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Honored Contributor
Posts: 11,168
Registered: ‎03-09-2010

What to say when someone is taking it wrong

We are part of a group that owns summer property.

one of the owners decided to also be caretaker and live in the house assigned for that.He has been traveling often and is gone three full months during the winter when nobody is here to watch the property.A pipe blew in the laundry house and caused a lot of damage that also caused the exit door to breakdown and the heat bill was very high as a result.Both he and his wife are no longer speaking to me because I said they need to provide better security when nobody is here during the winter as part of their role as caretakers.I understand that they are retired and enjoy traveling often but as caretakers they have taken on a responsibility to our group.They have been busy now trying to create a position where we are all taking sides.I want to find a way to mend this so we can all get back to enjoying each other without conflict...any suggestions?

Esteemed Contributor
Posts: 5,097
Registered: ‎03-09-2010

Re: What to say when someone is taking it wrong

It sounds a bit confusing....how is he the caretaker?  Is he getting paid to do this or just living there?  Is he living there over the winter?  Is there a separate building just for laundry?  How many buildings are there?  Is it a compound?

 

I think if a group of you purchased property together you should have a set of rules or a contract of some kid that covers all situations with damage, etc.

 

Maybe you could all call a meeting togehter to try & mend fences then write up some of these rules so everyone knows what to expect.

Honored Contributor
Posts: 31,982
Registered: ‎03-12-2010

Re: What to say when someone is taking it wrong

@Whatnow  I wish I had some advice for you. 

 

I don't know if it's because I'm inherently distrustful or inherently selfish because it's not in my nature to group own anything Woman Frustrated

 

 

There are many elements: wind, fire, water
But none quite like the element of surprise
Respected Contributor
Posts: 2,559
Registered: ‎05-09-2010

Re: What to say when someone is taking it wrong

Group owing property is difficult and can cause hard feelings.  I saw it in my own family, but thankfully we were not part of it.

 

In my opinion, he should have never taken on the job as caretaker knowing they like to travel, and ESPECIALLY with them being gone for 3 months.  That is not acceptable.  If you paid a caretaker, there is no way you would agree to a three month absence, because of what can (and did) happen.

 

I guess you are all going to have to foot the bill for repairs and move forward.  But I think it would be better to pay an outside person for the job.  Good Luck with this!

Always remember that you are absolutely unique. Just like everyone else. Margaret Mead
Respected Contributor
Posts: 3,786
Registered: ‎06-10-2015

Re: What to say when someone is taking it wrong

IMO it was very irresponsible of them to leave for that long of a time and not have someone routinely check on the property.

 

That being said, it is my opinion that they should pay the deductible that your homeowners insurance does not cover.

 

I dont see any way to mend this fence and since they were irresponsible and now acting like jerks, I would sell my portion and never look back.  Their true colors are showing.

 

I guess this is not very helpful.  Maybe someone else can offer you more sage advise.  Good luck in whatever you do.

"If its broke, God can fix it".....Joyce Meyer
Honored Contributor
Posts: 11,168
Registered: ‎03-09-2010

Re: What to say when someone is taking it wrong

The caretaker lives in the house to look after the property...lawns,maintenance and security during the winter..we have 8 owners who each have their own cabin..the laundry house is for the cabins and the house has its own laundry.The problem isn’t so much the cost of repairs but also one of security when nobody is here during the winter.We could even have an insurance problem without someone on the property.We do have rules and a contract but the person is an owner so I guess he feels the rules are different in his case from past caretakers.He is very sensitive to any questions about his duties...it’s just really awkward.

Honored Contributor
Posts: 19,446
Registered: ‎05-10-2010

Re: What to say when someone is taking it wrong

This confused me so I imagine all of you are confused too.  I don't undertand why all of the owners did failed to  make a decision regarding this "caretaker" duty and put it in writing and sign it.  You are all co-owners so it was inherently unfair to just assume that the role would be "Bob's" forever and always.  Of course, he was going to be away at times so ALL of you should have made a plan for someone to look out for the house in his abscense.  It's obvious that there was never a formal agreement re the caretaker role, you are all co-owners so you ALL should address the issue and not pin the blame on anyone.  Sorry, absent a formal written agreement that stipulated the duties of the caretaker role, that couple does not have any more of a repsonsibility for safe guarding the house than any one of the others.  If you want to get over the difficulties and restore the peace, you (and whoever else criticized them) should apologize.  After that, all of you should meet and draft a fair plan for taking care of the house.  You should all sign it.   

Esteemed Contributor
Posts: 6,459
Registered: ‎03-09-2010

Re: What to say when someone is taking it wrong

@Whatnow , complicated situation.  I am guessing that good caretakers in seasonal operations are hard to come by.  If this caretaker is a good one, I. would take steps to ensure you keep him.

 

I think the owners have to swallow the cost of heat and repairs (including I assume the caretaker if he is part of the ownership circle).  If you don’t have off season care clearly stated in the contract and if you are not satisfied with the current situation, you must modify the contract.

 

Either the caretaker agrees to the new contract or he doesn’t.  If he doesn’t, you will have to find someone else.

 

I would nominate one of the owners to discuss this with him and move forward accordingly.  Stay out of the blame game.  No winners there.

 

Good luck @Whatnow .  LM

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Super Contributor
Posts: 342
Registered: ‎07-10-2011

Re: What to say when someone is taking it wrong

[ Edited ]

@Whatnow, why not hire a handy man or someone to oversee the properties? Who leaves for three months with nothing in place? If everyone still wants him to be in charge, he should find someone to take charge when he is away.

 

Even though he is also an owner, he could be replaced as caretaker.

Respected Contributor
Posts: 3,888
Registered: ‎03-09-2010

Re: What to say when someone is taking it wrong

Get someone else. He cant maintain property or provide security if he isnt there.

 

Why didn't he drain the pipes before winter?