How a family of five took on a cottage reno project in Gravenhurst

How a family of five took on a cottage reno project in Gravenhurst

The buyers: Amanda Moskowitz, a 34-year-old stay-at-home mom; her husband, Adam, a 39-year-old auctioneer; and their three young children.

The story: Adam grew up vacationing on Lake Muskoka and wanted to continue the tradition with his wife and kids, but their existing cottage was too small for their growing family. It was time to trade up. Amanda was concerned about the kids’ safety: she wanted a place located on a bay, with minimal boat traffic and calm water. Their budget of $1.5 ­million needed to cover the purchase price as well as any renovations.

The buy

Lake Muskoka, Gravenhurst

This one-and-a-half-storey cottage had been vacant for about four years. The previous owners had started a reno but never followed through, leaving the interior gutted and ready for construction. Amanda and Adam loved the idea of having a blank canvas to renovate as they pleased, and the bay location meant tranquil water for the kids. They crunched the numbers and figured they could afford to finish the reno if they got the place for a little less than list price. There were no other bidders, so they were able to win out for $49,000 under asking. A year later, their renovation is almost complete.

The Specs

Size: 2,800 square feet
Listed at: $949,000
Purchase price: $900,000
Lake frontage: 300 feet
Bedrooms: None
Bathrooms: None
Features: Renovation-ready

Here’s the view from the lake:

And the view of the lake:

The Hunt