In the Northern Hemisphere, the first day of summer is June 21st. But here in Canada, many people believe that the May long weekend is the official start of the new summer season. Summer has always been close to Canadians’ hearts as they dream of escaping to the great outdoors after a cold winter and rainy spring. Heading out to a cottage or cabin is the perfect way to celebrate the arrival of sunny days and warmth. But since many cabins aren’t winterized and act as seasonal cottages, work needs to be done to open them. Thankfully, there are teams of professionals ready to support ‘cottagers’ with all of their maintenance needs.
HomeStars recently spoke with Upper Lakes Property Management, a crew of skilled carpenters, handypersons, and grounds work operators located in the Muskoka region of Ontario. Having situated its operations in Muskoka and surrounding areas, Upper Lakes Property Management has a deep understanding of the unique needs of cottage properties.
If you’re interested in learning more about cottage maintenance, from open to close, keep reading!
Why Hire a Professional For Your Cottage?
In Muskoka, cottage maintenance is a year-round effort. Whether your property is open all year or is only seasonal, hiring a cottage maintenance professional to look after your space can take a load off of your busy plate. To mediate potential winter issues such as ice damming, roof snow-load issues, or erosion, Upper Lakes Property Management suggests incorporating proactive maintenance work strategies into your cottage care schedule. By doing so, you can ensure your cottage stays safe during the winter season and is ready for you to enjoy when spring and summer arrives.
Many cottages in the Muskoka region were built during the early to mid-1900s. Due to a building’s age, your cottage may need to be handled with special attention and care. Between old plumbing and electrical wiring, it’s important to have a licensed plumber or electrician on the case. Upper Lakes Property Management Inc. can provide ‘cottagers’ with the right tools, education, and support that can meet the needs and the specific characteristics of these types of properties. Upper Lakes can also provide services in cottage improvement so you can grow your investment and get the most out of your summer season! Think bigger, brighter, cozier!
What to Look for in a Cottage Maintenance Company?
Searching for the right service professional for any project can take time. To find out what qualities to look for in a cottage maintenance company, we turned to Upper Lakes Property Management for advice. Upper Lakes Property Management suggested finding a professional who is “knowledgeable, prepared, and experienced.” One way to find professionals that meet these criteria is by reading reviews on HomeStars. “Reviews are a great way for people to feel comfortable with a service provider. [Cottagers] can see that the contractor was able to complete the job successfully and satisfy their client’s needs,” says Upper Lakes Property Management. Whether it’s by conducting multiple site visits or providing a variety of solutions, a series of steps are needed to ensure a project’s success. By employing best practices, safety standards, and ensuring that all work adheres to code, a cottager can feel confident that the best decisions are being made for their property when they’ve hired a pro.
What Is Needed To Open and Close A Cottage?
When it comes to a cottage, opening and closing routine checklists are a must. Because all cottages are different, it’s important to recognize that each cottage will have its own set of needs. By connecting with a professional, you can properly tailor your opening and closing checklist to your space. With that said, Upper Lakes Property Management shared a basic checklist:
- Activate any and all sanitary, hydro, electricity, and water systems
- Inspect the property’s health and be on the look for potential damage
- Clean the deck and porch
- Inspect the deck and porch for rotted planks or nails to replace
- Clean exterior windows and remove sap, pollen, and insect debris
- Remove leaves, fallen pine needles, and debris to avoid moisture around the property perimeter.
- Inspect for any needed pest, moisture, and mold control or mediation
- Review driveways, paths and walkways for safety/stability
- Deactivate any and all sanitary, hydro, electricity, and water systems
- Inspect your septic tank, fireplace, and roof
- Drain your pipes to prevent freezing
- Clean your gutters and eavestroughs
- Wash, stain, and seal your deck or porch
- Clean interior spaces and windows
- Clear out the fridge, freeze, and cupboards
Get Your Cottage Summer 2022 Approved
Just as your home is an investment, so too is your cottage. Across Canada, you can find highly skilled trade experts on HomeStars to support and address all of your cottage needs. Companies, such as Upper Lakes Property Management in the Muskoka region, are equipped to respond to year-round cottage needs and can make your cottage experience the best it can be!