As is the case with your home, your cottage is one of your most valuable assets. Do you reside there year-round or on the odd occasion? Is the property rented out at any time throughout the year? These are the types of questions you need to ask yourself when determining which coverage options fit you best. Given that we are located in cottage country, you can feel confident in knowing that the experts at PAIB Insurance Inc. have the knowledge and experience to pair you with the appropriate policy.

A cottage can be listed on your home insurance as a secondary or seasonal location. You can also have property insurance as a separate, stand-alone policy.

Cottage Insurance Options to Consider

Due to the risk associated with part-time occupation, insurance for your cottage (also known as recreational property insurance) is normally provided on a named perils policy instead of a comprehensive or all risk policy.

With named perils, you have insurance coverage for specific risks such as fire, explosion or smoke damage. Coverage for certain risks, such as water damage or vandalism, may be more difficult or expensive to arrange, due to part-time occupancy. For example, if a water pipe bursts or if vandals break in while your cottage is vacant, the damage is likely to be more severe because it takes longer for the damage to be discovered.

Recreational property insurance works somewhat differently than insurance for your primary home. How your cottage is used and how often it is occupied will dictate which insurance packages are appropriate.

3 Additional Coverages to Consider


Some insurance packages automatically include contents up to a certain limit. This coverage applies to contents permanently kept at the vacation home. Anything you take back and forth – such as clothing – is covered by your primary home insurance policy. If this coverage is inadequate, additional coverage may be purchased.

Detached private structures

Some insurance packages include limited coverage for outbuildings such as boathouses, garages or sheds. If this coverage is inadequate, additional coverage may be purchased.


Coverage for recreational properties will often limit coverage for power boats, canoes, and sailboats. These items have the potential to be specifically insured by endorsement or by amending your limits. Contact your insurance representative for more information regarding your cottage insurance options.

Be Aware of What is Not Covered

For cottage insurance policies, common exclusions include coverage for septic backup and flooding, fuel oil release, earth movement (e.g. earthquake) and damage to / loss of:

  • Motorized vehicles
  • Campers or trailers
  • Buildings used for business or farming purposes.

Even a fixer-upper that is of low value requires third-party liability coverage. This coverage protects you in the event of someone getting hurt on your property or if you are responsible for damages caused to a neighbour’s property.