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How to build the perfect bunkie

Bunkies are an extension of your cottage, a place to house guests or a fun little getaway for the kids. Regardless of who’s staying there, they should never feel as though they’ve been given the short end of the stick, because they aren’t staying in the main cottage. To avoid this, the style and comfort of your cottage should be carried through to your bunkie. However, although a bunkie should offer maximum comfort, it is also important to consider how much use it will get and during what seasons before building it.  This will ensure it is built properly and will help avoid unnecessary costs.

build the perfect bunkie

Photo Source: Bid My Reno

Building Permits and Restrictions

Bunkies are typically small spaces, and it may be surprising that you need a building permit before beginning any work. However, the Ontario Building Code requires a permit for any structure greater than 108 square feet. It is important to look into the building codes and regulations in your municipality before beginning any projects, as each one has different zoning bylaws. If you plan to build your bunkie near the water, it is also important to look into shoreline setbacks. Most areas have strict rules regarding how close any buildings can be to the water. Taking the proper steps before physically beginning your build will ensure the process is easy and stress free.


build the perfect bunkie

Photo Source: DIY Cozy Home


Aside from building codes, the location of your bunkie should be carefully considered to guarantee the maximum comfort of your guests. What’s the view like, does it face the water or the back of your cottage? A pleasant view will make guests feel more at home and welcome. Its proximity to the cottage is also important to think about, especially if it does not have its own bathroom. The walk from the bunkie to the cottage should be quick and easy for your guests, so they can have easy access to the cottage amenities, and not feel isolated.


build the perfect bunkie

Photo Source: Chris Kauffman


Carefully consider the amenities you would like to include in your bunkie, how luxurious do you want to make it? This may depend on how much use you think it will receive. Heating and air conditioning are important to help battle whatever weather comes your way, and will leave your guests feeling much more comfortable.


A bathroom is also a great addition, it provides guests with a sense of privacy, as well as added convenience, saving them a walk to the cottage in the middle of the night or first thing in the morning.

build the perfect bunkie

Photo Source: Ashley Klinger & Co.


Designing your bunkie with ample windows can make the space feel much larger, airier and bright. The paint colours and exterior of the bunkie should match that of the cottage, to create a cohesive look, making it evident that it is an extension of your cottage. You may also want to consider building a small deck or another outdoor seating option for your guests. It will be an added luxury to your bunkie.

build the perfect bunkie

Photo Source: Lady Anne’s Charm

Creating a Comfortable Space

Details make all the difference, incorporating small things for comfort and convenience can improve your guests’ stay immensely. A coffee machine and mini fridge save your guests from having to make trips back and forth to the cottage when they want a snack or drink.  A television or radio can also make a large difference, incorporating an element of entertainment. With all these added luxuries, guests will be yearning to stay in the bunkie.



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