Cottages are typically seasonal properties and as sellers, you will probably want to enjoy one last season at your getaway place. That being said the best seasons to sell your cottage would be the Spring, Summer or Fall. Each does come with its own set of pros and cons.
Pros: The trees are bare and everything is damp. Both sound like negatives but they allow buyers to see what your neighbour's area looks like and how dry your cottage can stay. After the winter the water level is at its highest. Giving buyers a great idea at what the shoreline looks like.
Cons: The spring is often when buyers can see the big problems especially the landscape. Selling during this time might require more maintenance of the structure. You will also be encouraged to clean leaves and fallen branches the winter brought. That means more work for you before you can sell.
Pros: It’s warmer and buyers will be chomping at the bit to buy a recreational property. This way they can enjoy some of the good weather. You may find more buyers and competitive offers on your property.
Cons: You won’t be able to enjoy the full season at your cottage. Moving costs are also typically more expensive during the summer. You might also find that with more buyers there are a lot of people walking around your property. With all these people you will need to constantly be cleaning while also being vacant during home tours. Juggling this schedule might become difficult and unenjoyable.
Pros: Similar to spring, buyers will be able to see the bare bones of your property. Buying in the fall will also allow buyers to get their belongings in order for when they move in during the spring. They will be able to schedule movers ahead of time, buy new furniture and enjoy their first full season.
Cons: Buyers will not be able to enjoy the cottage until the following Spring. Some will be less motivated to buy because of this. You might actually find interested buyers who will wait till Spring to see if your property is still on the market. That way they won’t have to pay for months at a cottage they don't get to use.
We would recommend that you avoid selling in the Winter specifically because it’s harder for buyers to visit your cottage do to snow and colder temperatures. If your cottage is not winterized you won’t be able to let buyers in until the Spring. Buyers will not want to buy a cottage they can’t fully see. As well due to snow and ice, they won’t be able to see the shoreline unless you or the agent took photos previous to the winter.
Overall, we suggest Spring is the best time to sell your recreational property. There will be less foot traffic through your property as well as motivated early-bird buyers.
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