Stay a while in the cottage before you start renovating. It may be necessary to know how you want to design the cottage. Think practically. Do not demand new conditions.
Take a closer look how the cottage looked like from the start. Is the cottage rebuilt? Enlist the help of previous owners, old, photographs or drawings. Photograph the cottage before the modifications for both you and any future owners.
Make preparations för your project. Build the cottage yourself or hire tradesmen? Read the manuals. Find out the Association's building regulations. Do you need a planning permission? Contact the Association and talk to your neighbours before you rebuild. Take quotes and compare prices and references.
Accept that the cottage has become older. Use traditional materials and colors. Save the original parts, such as brackets, moldings, doors, etc. You may decide later how you want to reuse the items. Take care of the cottage. Review the painting on the facade and windows. Make periodic review of roofs, gutters and downpipes. Do not plant too close to foundations.