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Is Your Cottage a Family Treasure or a Family Investment?

Feb 23, 2019 9:00:00 AM The MacMillan Estate Planning Team Estate Planning, family cottage, Family Office


If you own a cottage, it will be a key point of interest in the preparation of your legacy. However, the role it plays in your estate plan will largely depend on the relationship that you and your family have with it. Is it an object of emotional significance or is it simply a piece of real estate?

The Cottage as an Heirloom

For many, the cottage is a cherished locale whose meaning goes beyond its capital value, a place where formative life experiences are had and unforgettable memories are made. It may hold an even greater significance if it’s been tied to the family name for multiple generations. Whatever the circumstances may be, treating the cottage as an heirloom in your estate plan comes with a number of important considerations. For instance, it’s essential to maintain clear and healthy communication regarding expectations for inheritance — both in person and in your estate documents — so that the risk of family conflict can be mitigated.

As Investment Property

Whether or not the cottage holds a great deal of personal meaning for the family, it is also an investment. As such, its viability and cost efficiency may one day reach a downturn, and remaining attached to it despite this could prove to be financially damaging. Like any piece of real estate, a cottage requires upkeep that could become more costly than it is worth. Further, there may be no guarantee that your children are personally or financially fit to inherit it. It’s not uncommon for beneficiaries to allow their inherited cottage property to fall into disrepair, ultimately having no choice but to sell it at a loss.

How a Family Office Can Help

Whether you sell the cottage or it remains in your family for another generation, an experienced family office can provide both guidance and support. They will assist you in navigating the issues to ensure the best possible outcome for you and your loved ones.

Your estate plan should be shaped by the countless nuances that define the relationships between you, your family, and your wealth. MacMillan Estate Planning is committed to taking a detailed, attentive approach to empowering your legacy. Request a free consultation today!

At MacMillan Estate Planning, our team of professional trust and estate practitioners, chartered accountants, financial planners, and legal professionals look forward to assisting you with the design of your estate plan and will ensure you build, protect, and enjoy your wealth. The information provided is general and may not be suited to your objectives or sufficient to ensure the protection of you and your family. You should not act on this information without providing MacMillan Estate Planning with the opportunity to ensure that it is suitable for your unique situation.

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