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In-laws dropped the bomb

October 3rd, 2008 at 08:36 pm

Before the came to visit, the in-laws said they wanted to talk to us about their financial situation. Well, they did and it wasn't even close to what I expected.

They own a rental property right next door to their own house. It was my hubby's grandpa's house, and when he died, they had an emotional attachment to the house and didn't want to let it go. So... they turned it into a rental.

They told us they were done being landlords and they asked us to take over all the rental house responsibilities, repairs, tenant management. etc.

The rental house is 1000 miles from where we live, yet right next door to his parents.

I understand that they are not the right personality types to be landlords. They like to micromanage, and every small thing that happens in their life is considered a crisis. Not really conducive to letting other people live their lives the way they want in a house you own and live next door to.

We straight out told them Hell NO. With a new baby, and me not working full time. no way. We have no problems being a landlord, but we do have a problem being an absentee landlord, especially on a house we live so far from and that wasn't purchased based on its ability to make money, but only because of an emotional attachment.

If we had done it, it would have been a nightmare for us. Hiring and paying a property manager and paying the real estate taxes would have eaten up any money it made. Plus, his parents would constantly be calling us telling us to deal with this or that about the tenant or this or that should be done around the house, etc. and I really have a strained enough relationship with them without throwing that in.

I'm glad the hubby and I agree that this is a no go.

12 Responses to “In-laws dropped the bomb”

  1. Ima saver Says:

    You did the right thing. I had 3 rentals and they were nightmares when we lived in the same town. When we moved, they became even worse. We let one stay empty and some one broke in and lived there for months. we even had to pay their water bill.

  2. Broken Arrow Says:

    Yep yep. I would've told them no too.

  3. scfr Says:

    Wow - You absolutely did the right thing, and glad the 2 of you were in complete agreement.

  4. mom-sense Says:


    Is that right? 1000? You adsolutely did he right thing. We manage an apartment building for my father who lives one hour (30 miles away) from it. We are closer at 15 miles. My father is retired with nothing but time on his hands. We have a huge family, not mention DH's 9-5 job, plus coaching soccer etc. Let them hire management out to a management company - local to them that is.

  5. Joan.of.the.Arch Says:

    OMG. What were they thinking? Their proposal sounds irrational. Could it be they were really trying to get you two to think about moving closer to them, maybe even into the house next door?

  6. Aleta Says:

    You did the right thing. This is their responsibility and their own decision to not have sold it in a time when they could have probably seen a good profit from it.

    BTW, does your hubby have any other siblings and do they live close by?

  7. baselle Says:

    So let's see, you would have all of the diaper aspects of a managing a rental (from 1000 miles away) while they would have the baby aspects of owning the rental (next door). Wow, jump on that! Smile You definitely did the right thing.

    It wouldn't surprise me though that they will grit their collective teeth and put the property up for sale. In a sense, they've tested your DH to see if he somehow inherited that attachment. Hopefully when they inherited the property their cost basis was low. Expect that they will complain that your DH should have showed some family fidelity.

  8. thriftorama Says:

    My hubby is an only child.

    They even admit they kept the house for sentimental reasons and really think it was a mistake.

    They seem to think that leaving all the land they own intact, even with a nightmare rental property on it, is their "legacy" and their gift to us. That's why they don't want to sell it. They thought of us taking it over as them giving us part of our inheritance early.

    We told them the best gift they can give to us is taking care of themselves.

  9. HELPmeFriend Says:

    At least you had your hubby on your side. That could have been hard for you if he wasn't on the same page. That could also have been hard if he was just going to agree with his parents and had an emotional attachment to the house.
    WAY TO GO!

  10. fern Says:

    Yes, you did the right thing, and i think it was rather selfish (not to mention ridiculous) of them to propose that to you knowing you have a new baby. I think it's time they sold the house, sentimental attachments or not.

  11. nance Says:

    You certainly made the right decision. We tried to be landlords from 1200 miles away, and it was a nightmare.
    We sold the house, and it was a great decision!

  12. Analise Says:

    This is another example of why it is important to keep emotions out of the equation when buying real estate. Kudos for having the courage to do the smart thing and what is best for you, your DH and baby.

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