Cottage in winter

Are You Closing Your Cottage for Winter? Here are 4 Steps to Protect Your Property and Possessions

With fall officially here, it’s likely that within the next few weeks you will be planning to close your cottage for the winter season. That includes putting all those valuable possessions you use in the summer months into a secure location

It’s particularly important that you store your possessions away this year, with The Weather Network predicting that Ontario will experience temperatures below normal – as well as “heightened potential for extended periods of severe cold.”

You’ve more than likely got a lot of use and enjoyment out of your cottage and possessions this past summer. However, now is the time to make sure you take a number of steps that will ensure you protect those valuable items through the off-season.

Here are a few steps you should take to ensure your possessions are secure from both the weather and criminal activity: 

1 – Use a portable storage unit

Most cottage owners leave their expensive equipment locked away in sheds or garages, but these are neither safe from criminals or protect your possessions from the cold, damp weather. Portable storage units, on the other hand, are both secure and weatherproof. 

Portable storage units can be delivered right to your cottage, making it far easier to fill them than the multiple trips it would take to fill a self-storage unit with your large high-value possessions. Once full, a portable storage unit can either be left on your property or taken away to your local storage center.

A portable storage unit will keep your items safe from the weather, criminals and rodents, and is perfect for those high-value items you only use in summer, such as:

  • ATVs
  • Dirt bikes
  • Small boats
  • Outdoor furniture
  • Seadoos
  • Stand-up paddleboards
  • Tools
  • Sporting equipment
  • And much more

Once winter is finished, you can simply take your possessions out of the storage unit and your empty unit will then be removed from your property. 

Want more information about which possessions you can store in your portable storage throughout the winter? Read our blog ‘4 Reasons Why You Should Use a Portable Storage Unit This Winter’.

2 – Leave your heat on

Closing down your cottage and turning the heat off will leave your property susceptible to frozen water pipes. If your water pipes do indeed freeze, then it’s likely they’ll burst and cause severe flooding damage to your property.

By simply leaving your heat on anywhere from 5°C to 10°C, you’ll prevent your pipes from having the opportunity of freezing over. 

3 – Make sure you lock all doors and windows

Just because you store all your high-value items in a secure portable storage unit, you should still ensure that all windows and doors at your cottage are locked. Failing to do this could result in you not meeting your cottage’s insurance criteria.

Make sure your windows are all securely locked, as well as the doors on your shed, guesthouse and garage. 

4 – Ask a neighbour to check in

Not all cottages are used solely for summer. In fact, many people are now retiring in Muskoka and living in cottages, and many others choosing to still travel to their cottages during the winter months. 

If there is somebody in your neighbourhood that you trust, make sure you ask them to check in on your cottage sporadically throughout the winter. They will check that nobody has tried to break in and that your property has not suffered any weather damage. 

Want more tips about closing your cottage for the winter season, or simply want to enquire about our portable storage offering – in which we serve cottage country, including areas such as Muskoka, Minden, Haliburton, Parry Sound, Gravenhurst, Huntsville and other surrounding areas? Contact our team of storage experts today.