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Old Yesterday, 07:02 AM
 
30,631 posts, read 47,841,301 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kayanne View Post
If I lived there full time, I would definitely do it myself, as I have in the past. As I explained in my OP, this is not our primary residence. We currently live outside the country; my furniture and worldly possessions live at the house with the pool, which I visit just a few times a year.
You need to find someone to come in and check your house weekly while you are gone.
If the water is left turn on—since he used it for the pool—the possibility of a water leak inside that goes unnoticed for long time or other issues seems significant...

How do you prep the house before you leave it for months?
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Old Yesterday, 07:04 AM
 
30,631 posts, read 47,841,301 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rickcin View Post
Wondering if you called the sewer department to explain that the excessive water usage was a result of filling a pool?

Sewage costs are based on water usage that get piped away in the sanitary sewer system and treated in a waste water plant treatment plant. If you explain that the excessive water was used to fill a pool, they might reduce the sewage invoice significantly.
That is the point—
A small amount of water went into the pool
A much larger amount — days worth—went into the ground
It didn’t necessarily go into the sewer system since apparently he left the hose running when he left the property
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Old Yesterday, 07:57 AM
 
Location: A tropical island
4,622 posts, read 4,523,650 times
Reputation: 11534
Quote:
Originally Posted by loves2read View Post
You need to find someone to come in and check your house weekly while you are gone.
If the water is left turn on—since he used it for the pool—the possibility of a water leak inside that goes unnoticed for long time or other issues seems significant...

How do you prep the house before you leave it for months?
I did Google a while back for a company who would check an empty house, and didn't really find anything. My son lives 30 minutes away but he spends a significant amount of time out of state for work, so not a good option. We just bought this house in January, when my husband took the job out of the country, to be our retirement home next year and to be a place to put all of our possessions in the meantime. So I don't really even know any neighbors yet, other than very brief hello's.

As far as prepping the house before I leave (which is usually for a month or two, before a trip back to check on things), I unplug things, turn off AC, and throw sheets over furniture. Maybe there is a way to turn off the water inside the house but still have water available for Brian to fill the pool. I'll think on that.

Last edited by kayanne; Yesterday at 08:08 AM..
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Old Yesterday, 08:47 AM
 
Location: Minnesota
2,130 posts, read 916,930 times
Reputation: 3765
Don't forget to turn off the water supply to your washing machine. If you have water supply hoses to washer they are known to give out. I turn mine off when I leave for more than two days. Have plumber install on/ off lever valves (rather than the twist knob style) where needed to shut off. You could probably have it set up so only the spigot to pool hose is on for the pool guy.
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Old Yesterday, 09:02 AM
 
4,081 posts, read 2,849,609 times
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Did the pool overflow?

We have filled our pool a few times and the water company always gives us the sewer credit, there's never any issue at all with getting that. Please don't expect him to pay that bill.

It sounds like his offer of one month free service is about right. You said they adjusted your water bill, how much is it normally?
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Old Yesterday, 09:23 AM
 
18,830 posts, read 20,799,515 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kayanne View Post
The young man (Brian) who takes care of our swimming pool once a week was adding water to our pool with the garden hose, and he forgot to turn it off when he left. I arrived at this home 5 days later, saw the water running, and knew we would have a very expensive bill.

When the water bill came, it was for 48,000 gallons (we normally use 1000 gallons or less because this is not our primary residence), at a cost of $418, which I let Brian know. He offered to give me one month of free pool service, but that is only $200. I told him I would see if the water company would give me a price adjustment (they did, down to $225).

Then a couple weeks later I remembered that our billing for water and sewer had recently been changed, and is now administered by two different companies. Our sewer bill arrived, and it was for $550! So I called Brian back, and told him about the additional $550 but that I would apply for a "pool fill credit." (still waiting to hear back about that). Brian just said something vague like "Well, hopefully we can work something out." He has never offered to cover the bills whatever they are.

THEN I realized that the day the water meter was read was on the third day out of the five that my garden hose was running non-stop. This means my NEXT month's water bill and sewer bill will also be extremely high. (And the price adjustment thing can only be requested once per year, so they will be due in full.)

I hate that the expenses I'm reporting to Brian just keep growing and growing. He's a very nice and polite kid (probably 20-something) who is trying to get this new pool business going, and I'm going to have probably over $1000 of bills, because he forgot to turn off our water. I'm bothered by the fact that he hasn't offered to pay whatever the water and sewer bills are for the two months. But I am currently living out of the country, good pool guys are hard to find (he's good other than this one lapse), and I probably need him more than he needs my business.

Should we insist he pay the total bills (minus a small portion for our household water use the few days we were there)? Or perhaps split it 50-50 as a gesture of goodwill since we do want to keep him as our pool guy? Why am I feeling guilty for expecting him to pay? (Ah, I know the answer: because we are older and financially secure, and the thousand bucks will hurt him a lot more than it would hurt us. Should that be relevant?)
So what happens at his next mental lapse where he forgets to turn off the water again?

Sorry none of that is your problem. It’s absolutely irrelevant wether you are well off, he’s gonna be hurt by this or you want to keep him as the pool guy. I don’t understand why you’re willing to split or eat a bill that the charges were not caused by you. There is probably a good reason why Brian is just a pool guy not a rocket scientist. This is absolutely his fault and he should eat the costs. That’s just part of running a business. Sometimes you **** up and pay for it. Guys like this who do crap like that don’t usually stay in business.
Yeah he is nice now. Wait till you present him with a $1000 water bill. I bet you’ll never hear from him again.


Wait till you get all your billing and THEN call Brian the pool guy and tell him that he owes you x amount of money. It’s not your job to go and deduct or fight with the water company for billing. When Brian says I hope we can work it out I would say yes you pay the money you owe for leaving the water running and you can still be the pool guy for my property. Otherwise I’ll get another company and I’ll take you to court for the damages.
There are plenty of pool guys who will take the business. And I wouldn’t offer to do anything stupid like he can do the pool for free for x time. You’ll be the one who loses out. No he pays you what he owes then you pay him his service charge. Keep the two transaction separate

Being well off doesn’t mean you need to bend over and take it
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Old Yesterday, 10:09 AM
 
Location: A tropical island
4,622 posts, read 4,523,650 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KaraG View Post
Did the pool overflow?

We have filled our pool a few times and the water company always gives us the sewer credit, there's never any issue at all with getting that. Please don't expect him to pay that bill.

It sounds like his offer of one month free service is about right. You said they adjusted your water bill, how much is it normally?
Yes the pool overflowed. The sewer company (which just became separate from the water company) will give us a "pool fill" adjustment only one time per year. Since the water was left running during the week that our water meter was read, we will have high bills for two months.

Water bill Aug 9, $418, adjusted down to $225.
Sewer bill Aug 9, $550, I don't yet know how much adjustment they'll give me.
Water bill Sept 9, bill amount unknown as of yet, or if adjustment is possible.
Sewer bill Sept 9, unknown, but definitely no adjustment.

Normally our water bill is about $25, and sewer about $30, because I'm not there much.

His offer of one month free service is not going to be nearly enough, unfortunately. That $418 and $550 were the charges for only 3 days of the water running. There were two additional days that will show up on my next bill, approximately another $280 for water (possibly adjusted by almost half, like the last bill, but I rather doubt they'll adjust again) and $370 for sewer (no adjustment). So another $500-600 on top of the August water bill that was discounted down to $225 (of which I'll accept $25 - $50 for my own household use) plus whatever the August sewer bill is discounted to.

As my subject line said, an expensive mistake.
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Old Yesterday, 01:07 PM
 
Location: Fort Lauderdale, Florida
9,541 posts, read 8,519,971 times
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Where do you live that you pay $200 a month for pool service? Mine is $75.
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Old Yesterday, 01:49 PM
 
5,988 posts, read 6,841,029 times
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You really have been very kind to many of the responders, and you have also laid out your priorities.


So, add up all the bills, have a sit down, face to face, serious conversation with Brian and explain what it costs, and that you don't wish to hurt him such that he goes out of business. Whatever he charges you per month, divide the amount you have incurred by his rate and tell him he will be servicing your pool for that many months at HIS EXPENSE until the debt is paid off. Be very firm. No negotiating or squabbling. Be honest that you appreciate his service aside from this event.


That is very fair. You save him his company and continue to have an otherwise good pool guy.
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Old Yesterday, 02:16 PM
 
Location: A tropical island
4,622 posts, read 4,523,650 times
Reputation: 11534
Quote:
Originally Posted by blueherons View Post
Where do you live that you pay $200 a month for pool service? Mine is $75.
You pay $75 for weekly pool service?? Our guy is there for at least an hour every week. Maybe your pool has more automation so your pool guy doesn't have as much to do.

My previous lady (the one I got rid of because she wasn't doing a good job) was charging me $75 a WEEK! I started out using her because the previous homeowner used her, and with me not living there, it seemed easier just to keep the person who was already familiar with that pool. I did think $75 a week was high, but $50 seems reasonable based on what I've seen online.

Count yourself lucky for getting it done so inexpensively! I do look forward to living at that house and being my own "pool guy" again. Quite easy to do with all the information at the Troublefree Pool website.
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