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Cottage Culture and Insurance – Make Sure Your Cottage is Covered

Cottage Culture and Insurance – Make Sure Your Cottage is Covered

August 9, 2021

I think we can all agree: Canadians love their cottages! Cottage culture is more than just a fad – we love escaping lakeside or to the forests and mountains to enjoy the natural beauty of our country. Whether you like to fish, hike, boat, or just relax with your family and friends, your cottage is the perfect place to do all of the things you love.

However, you use your cottage, it is worth spending a few minutes learning more about cottage insurance coverage to make sure your investment is protected so you can enjoy every minute in your retreat. Having the proper cottage insurance is important, and the policy you purchase can depend on how you use your cottage, where it is located, and other factors.

Read on to learn more about cottage insurance, then contact us at Duliban Insurance Brokers for more information.

What you Should Know About Cottage Insurance

Whether you are using your vacation home seasonally or all year round, make sure you have the right cottage insurance coverage in place to protect your property if you plan to rent your cottage to tourists.

Many tourists who rent cottages treat them kindly, but some do not – having the proper insurance coverage in place when you encounter those few disrespectful guests is critical.

What is Cottage Insurance?

Cottage insurance, sometimes called recreational property insurance, is similar to the homeowner’s or condo policy you have for your main home. It helps protect your cottage from damages or theft and can provide protection when your cottage is vacant or rented to guests. Every policy is different, though, so it is important to review conditions, exclusions, and coverage limits to understand what you are getting with your cottage policy.

Some insurance companies will only write your cottage insurance if you also have your primary home or condo insured with them. Many cottage policies will not allow you to rent your cottage, so you may need a separate policy or endorsement to manage that type of risk.

What is Covered Under Cottage Insurance?

Every policy differs, but many cottage policies are written on a named perils basis. This means the policy provides coverage for losses caused only by the perils written in the policy. This is often because certain perils can be harder to discover and reduce with cottages that are used on a part-time only basis.

Consider if a pipe were to break while you were away for several months – the slow release of water over all that time is likely to cause more damage than if you lived there full-time and noticed the damages right away.

Liability insurance is critical on a cottage insurance policy to provide protection in case guests or renters are injured or if damage to another person’s property happens. Third-party liability can be included or added to your cottage policy.

When you purchase cottage insurance, certain factors will be important for your insurance company:

  • How do you use your cottage?
  • Is it occupied year-round or only seasonally? If seasonally, how frequently do you visit or check in on the property?
  • Do you rent it out to others or only your invited guests?
  • Where is your cottage located?

These questions will help determine the best policy for your needs.

Other Coverages to Consider for Your Cottage

Because every policy is different, you may have additional coverage needs for exposures not properly covered under your cottage policy. You may want to consider adding additional coverages depending on your policy:

Detached Structures

The detached structures you own on your vacation property may not be covered under your cottage policy. Check with your agent or review your policy to determine if outdoor bathrooms, boathouses, sheds, and the like are included, and consider adding coverage for these detached structures if you need it.


Your cottage policy should include some coverage for the contents that are permanently kept there. The belongings that travel with you, like your clothes, shoes, or other personal items, are generally covered under your primary homeowner’s policy. You may wish to purchase additional coverage if this is not enough.

Boats and Other Watercraft

If you own boats, kayaks, canoes, jet skis, and such to use at your cottage, the coverage provided by your cottage policy may be limited. Check your coverage limits to determine if you need to increase or add an endorsement to your policy to afford more coverage for your watercraft.

Replacement Cost

Replacement cost coverage means damaged items are repaired or replaced without regard to depreciation. This can make a large difference in the amount you receive from a claim if you have damaged property.

Rental Coverage & Income Protection

If you cannot rent your cottage because of covered damages, your rental coverage and income protection can help offset that loss. If you rent your cottage for income, this may be important coverage for you.

How do I Purchase Cottage Insurance?

It’s easy to purchase cottage insurance. Talk with your agent or advisor for help and to compare your options. Many insurance companies in Canada sell cottage insurance policies, so it is important to compare your options to find the best rate and policy for your needs.

If you already have cottage insurance, we can help you review your policy to ensure there are no gaps and the coverage meets your needs. If you have not compared rates in a while, you may be surprised to see your current carrier may not still be offering the most competitive rate.

Final Thoughts

Cottage culture is fun, relaxed, and a part of Canadian life. But make sure you are protected so your vacation does not end in disaster. Having proper cottage insurance coverage in place will help protect your family and your belongings so you can relax and enjoy your cottage.

How do I Learn More?

To learn more about cottage insurance, contact the experts at Duliban Insurance Brokers. Our licensed experts will be happy to answer any questions you have.

External Links:

  1. https://nationalpost.com/travel/throughout-its-history-cottage-culture-has-been-about-who-we-want-to-be-seen-as-rather-than-who-we-truly-are
  2. http://www.ibc.ca/ns/home/recreational-properties/cottage
  3. https://www.irmi.com/term/insurance-definitions/named-perils-coverage
  4. https://www.cottagetips.com/tips/renting-out-the-cottage/

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