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6 tips to adequately protect your cottage

Published on June 19, 2022


Renowned haven of peace, the cottage is synonymous with getting away and relaxing. Ready to get away from it all in your own little piece of paradise? Follow these six tips from L’Unique General Insurance to adequately insure your cottage and prevent losses.

1. Consult your insurance advisor

To get coverage tailored to your needs, contact an insurance advisor and tell him or her about the features of your cottage. For example:

  • Location
  • Use
  • Year of construction
  • Accessibility
  • Renovations

These are all things that can impact the coverage offered. That’s why your insurance broker should know about them.

You may also be eligible for various homeowners’ insurance coverage. They’re more commonly available for primary homes. There are also more limited coverages that mainly protect you against damage to the building due to fire or certain types of water damage. In that case, you could add à la carte coverage to insure the contents of your cottage.

Do you rent out your cottage? Tell your broker about it and specify how often you rent it out. Your broker can then offer you the appropriate coverage. Some insurers, such as L’Unique, could offer you coverage that’s tailored to your situation.

2. Protect your civil liability

It’s important to take out civil liability coverage for your cottage.

It doesn't matter how much it's worth or how often you use it. 

Did someone get hurt on your property? Did you accidentally break something that belongs to someone else? Civil liability insurance is included in your cottage insurance. It protects you if the injured party or owners of the damaged property decide to sue you. 

You should also remember that the proper maintenance of the building and grounds can prevent many injuries. 

3. Consider taking safety measures

  • Install smoke detectors. Replace the batteries every year.
  • Place a fire extinguisher in an area that’s accessible.
  • If you use fuel for heating (propane, gas, wood, etc.):
    • Do maintenance on your heating appliances or systems based on the manufacturer’s recommendations. 
    • Install carbon monoxide detectors. 
    • Store propane tanks outdoors.
  • Lighting a fire indoors or outdoors? Dispose of the ashes safely

4. Reduce the risk of break-ins

  • If possible, ask a neighbour you trust to keep an eye on your cottage if you’re away.
  • Install outdoor motion sensor lights.
  • Lock your doors, windows, storage space, etc.
  • Don’t leave valuable property (bicycles, electronic devices, jewelry, etc.) in your cottage while you’re away. Bring valuable objects back to your primary residence. They will then be covered by the insurance policy under this residence, which is likely more complete than your cottage insurance.

5. Install prevention systems

Many sensors allow for a rapid response when you’re not there. At the cottage, you would do well to install:

  • A fire alarm system connected to a central monitoring station
  • An anti-theft system connected to a central monitoring station

Some owners even have surveillance cameras installed.

6. “Close up shop” before you take off for an extended period

  • Turn off the water supply to prevent the pipes from freezing and bursting.
  • Unplug all electrical appliances.
  • Close and lock all doors and windows.

Your insurance broker is there to help you prevent losses. Contact him or her!