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Old 05-12-2014, 01:15 PM
 
Location: SW US
2,218 posts, read 2,036,207 times
Reputation: 3824

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Quote:
Originally Posted by zugor View Post
This is my dilemma. In this rural area I've yet to find anyone who runs a handyman service. A few times I've hired someone to do small jobs and they tend to want a rather high rate of pay (15 - 20 an hour), in cash at the end of each day, so that they can continue to collect various benefits such as unemployment and food stamps. Then they disappear and I'm left trying to find someone else.

Friends tell me they have the same problem with finding help.
Same problem here. Rural areas are tough. And if I manage to find a good handyman, they always seem to disappear before too long - retire, change to another business, move, etc.
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Old 05-12-2014, 01:21 PM
 
5,392 posts, read 6,536,800 times
Reputation: 10465
My HOA has a management company that DOES measure the grass and sends out notices with fines and liens, etc. Don't even think those folks served in the military etc but they push their power to the limit.
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Old 05-12-2014, 02:39 PM
 
Location: SW Florida
9,759 posts, read 7,038,572 times
Reputation: 14295
Quote:
Originally Posted by johngolf View Post
In our last purchase home maintenance played a major role as we were in our late 60's and the work of maintaining a home was becoming a task even for a very good DIYer like myself.

We opted for a new build stand-alone home in an HOA that includes all outside maintenance of landscape and house exterior shell. Yes there are HOA fees that pay for the maintenance but we also bought in an HOA with little to no amenities so the majority of fees go to maintenance not luxuries. Even in a private home one either pays now (monthly fees) or pays later like a new roof, septic system, etc. Buying new puts off any maintenance issues (theoretically) for 10 to 12 years but there is no getting around home maintenance. The only way I could see getting around maintenance is renting but there is no way that with no mortgage and a reasonable HOA fee that renting makes economic sense to me even if it might be worry free living.

One thing any homeowner should do is to find good and fair repair/maintenance people to do what is necessary especially when they cannot do such due to age or inability. I have such an HVAC company and an auto mechanic I trust. Also have a local tire and auto service place I trust. Most anything else can be done by a good handyman though finding such is a task in itself. The best sources I have found are personal recommendations from friends, family, etc. and never, never, never hire a family member..........LOL
...Or a fellow church member, LOL....

I think the idea is that the homeowner is responsible for needed maintenance and upkeep, regardless of whether or not he can actually do the work himself.

And to me it just seems like common sense that when one cannot manage that maintenance and upkeep, either because of physical, mental, or financial constraints, it's time to sell the property, and move to where one does not have to worry about it.

I know that's how I would approach the problem of not being able to take care of our property, as much as it pains me to think of the possibility at some time in the future.
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Old 05-12-2014, 02:51 PM
 
38,181 posts, read 14,924,927 times
Reputation: 24615
Quote:
Originally Posted by GrandviewGloria View Post

As for people subject to HOAs, I would suggest that you vote AGAINST anyone with a "leadership" background which includes military, police, or "education". Horticulturists, Scientists, Architects, Decorators, Artists... these are the people who should be making decisions in a nice neighborhood - not authoritarian imbeciles. ... I'm sure that a former Football Coach/Highschool Principal would be just dandy on the HOA Board.
This is terrific advice.

Unfortunately, it's the military types who step up and make life for everyone miserable with their "chain of command" authoritarian approach to matters and the horticulturists, etc. off away because "who needs the grief."

One of the ironies of our HOA is that the guy flying the "Don't tread on me" flag is constantly insisting the HOA "do something" about neighbors who don't mow their lawn or sweep up their driveway or whatever his latest gripe is on how others should be forced to comply with his standards.
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Old 05-12-2014, 02:57 PM
 
Location: SW Florida
9,759 posts, read 7,038,572 times
Reputation: 14295
Quote:
Originally Posted by Robyn55 View Post
Drought in California? We don't have drought or anything near it in Florida these days (we had a super wet winter). Robyn
I guess we have different water issues here in south end of Florida than you might in your neck of the woods. Here water issues are maintained ( with a stranglehold, IMO) by the South Florida Water Management District, and as regards the amount and control of the water in Lake Okeechobee, the Army Corps of Engineers as well.

The SFWMD has pretty much made water restrictions a permanent part of life in south and southwest Florida, they aren't terrible most of the time, but there are restrictions on the number of times and on which days one can irrigate one's lawn, wash one's car, there are regulations requiring the installation and use of "low flow" toilets, water restrictors on shower heads and faucets. This is probably not a bad idea, though, given the population in those areas of Florida and consequent high demand for water,
water IS a resource that could be decimated over time with careless use by that many people. At this point, the restrictions aren't all that strict, I don't think they're really inconvenient enough to drive anyone away, and there are other parts of the country where it's so much worse.

That said though, what amazes me is the repeated deliberate outflow of water from Lake Okeechobee at the request of the Army Corp of Engineers during periods of increased rainfalls, in lieu of their repairing the levees that surround the lake. They do so to lower the water levels in the lake so it doesn't overflow in the event of a hurricane, or long periods of heavy rainfall. Then, when the lake reaches levels below "normal", the SFWMD declares a drought, and issues increased water restrictions.
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Old 05-12-2014, 03:01 PM
 
Location: Ponte Vedra Beach FL
14,628 posts, read 17,932,507 times
Reputation: 6716
Quote:
Originally Posted by Travelassie View Post
...Or a fellow church member, LOL....

I think the idea is that the homeowner is responsible for needed maintenance and upkeep, regardless of whether or not he can actually do the work himself.

And to me it just seems like common sense that when one cannot manage that maintenance and upkeep, either because of physical, mental, or financial constraints, it's time to sell the property, and move to where one does not have to worry about it.

I know that's how I would approach the problem of not being able to take care of our property, as much as it pains me to think of the possibility at some time in the future.
Couldn't agree more. In fact - an older homeowner might get less sympathy from me than a younger one. Say a spouse has a corporate relo and has to move out of town while the remaining spouse has to deal with maintaining and selling the old house - maybe finishing out the school year with kids - etc. Or another situation my husband ran into when head of our CCVC. Couple gets divorced - and wife gets the house as long as the kids are minors. But not enough money to take care of the house. House gets cited for lawn violations and wife tries to re-sod lawn with help of 10-12-14 year old kids. Obviously ridiculous (and wife had one stupid attorney).

One thing most older homeowners have is mobility in terms of living here or there (although they may - often as a purely voluntary matter - elect not to be mobile).

And why is everyone here assuming that we're only talking about the POOR WIDOW SMITH? My father stopped doing most exterior maintenance on his house when he was 80+ because he thought it didn't make sense to pay for "cosmetic stuff". It was only when the city cited him for a very ugly roof (white roof all covered with black algae) that he got it cleaned up. My late FIL pretty much acted the same when he was 80. Note that neither of these men is/was anywhere near poor.

Also - I don't think we can get into "need" as a criteria - unless we're willing to demand financial statements from our potential beneficiaries going back years (many older people in Florida impoverish themselves voluntarily and give their money to their kids so they can - down the road - go into Medicaid SNFs).

If someone/anyone wants to do something/anything for anyone for any reason - you're not going to get a fight from me. Just don't expect me to break *my* back or raid *my* piggy bank to help you out. Or to ask my HOA to do the same with *my* money. Robyn
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Old 05-12-2014, 03:13 PM
 
Location: Ponte Vedra Beach FL
14,628 posts, read 17,932,507 times
Reputation: 6716
Quote:
Originally Posted by Travelassie View Post
I guess we have different water issues here in south end of Florida than you might in your neck of the woods. Here water issues are maintained ( with a stranglehold, IMO) by the South Florida Water Management District, and as regards the amount and control of the water in Lake Okeechobee, the Army Corps of Engineers as well.

The SFWMD has pretty much made water restrictions a permanent part of life in south and southwest Florida, they aren't terrible most of the time, but there are restrictions on the number of times and on which days one can irrigate one's lawn, wash one's car, there are regulations requiring the installation and use of "low flow" toilets, water restrictors on shower heads and faucets. This is probably not a bad idea, though, given the population in those areas of Florida and consequent high demand for water,
water IS a resource that could be decimated over time with careless use by that many people. At this point, the restrictions aren't all that strict, I don't think they're really inconvenient enough to drive anyone away, and there are other parts of the country where it's so much worse.

That said though, what amazes me is the repeated deliberate outflow of water from Lake Okeechobee at the request of the Army Corp of Engineers during periods of increased rainfalls, in lieu of their repairing the levees that surround the lake. They do so to lower the water levels in the lake so it doesn't overflow in the event of a hurricane, or long periods of heavy rainfall. Then, when the lake reaches levels below "normal", the SFWMD declares a drought, and issues increased water restrictions.
We have all this stuff too - as a way of life - from the St. Johns River Water Management District. And - last time I looked - our restrictions were more onerous than yours. So you still have all those ridiculously thirsty impatiens yard plantings in south Florida (you won't find them here). We also have tiered water pricing from our water company (the more you use - the more you pay per gallon). Guess I've just gotten very used to things. And - except during times like the '98-99 drought (when nothing would have helped) - the rules seem to work out ok. Unless you think your water bill should be $25/month <LOL>.

Haven't really kept in touch with the Lake Okeechobee or Everglades water management stuff lately. So I can't comment on it. All I know is south and central Florida are looking with thirsty water eyes at *our* water supplies. You can be darn sure that no local/regional politician here will ever get elected/re-elected if we send a drop of our water down south. Robyn
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Old 05-12-2014, 03:21 PM
 
Location: SoCal desert
8,093 posts, read 13,234,579 times
Reputation: 14870
Quote:
Originally Posted by Teddy52
My neighbor on the farm has a 5 acre lot and it is all lawn except for buildings.

It used to get quite yellow until.............presto.....one trip with the lawn tracor pulling a rented sprayer .

Beautiful lawn.

I thanked him for being a good neighbor and controlling his weeds.

He was a good neighbor and kept his place neat despite not being forced to do so.
Quote:
Originally Posted by old_cold View Post
A 5 acre spraying of an herbicide?
What is it that's said quite often in the P&C forum? I've got my bowl of popcorn ready.
Huh.
I read Teddy52's post completely different.
Didn't even think of herbicide.
Liquid lawn fertilizer controls and reduces weeds too.

Heck, in CA some people paint their lawns green
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Old 05-12-2014, 04:04 PM
 
Location: Near a river
16,042 posts, read 18,978,143 times
Reputation: 15649
Fighting the HOA for a grass-free yard (with useful links for Texas at the end of the piece):

How the HOA Was Won: The Story of My Grass-Free Yard
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Old 05-12-2014, 04:07 PM
 
29,782 posts, read 34,871,258 times
Reputation: 11705
Quote:
Originally Posted by Teddy52 View Post
Isn't it wonderful that we all have choices?

If a neat person buys a house between 2 junk yards, why should he complain afterwards?
If another person buys a house in an HOA and then complains about regulations .......why ?

Know what you are getting into beforehand.
Bada Bing
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