11 Replies Latest reply: Oct 22, 2019 2:06 PM by thaxterlane RSS

    My first charity auction will be my last charity auction

    bonesxxx Active Contributor

      A friend asked me to donate a weekend stay at my STR to benefit a local charity. I agreed (what can I say? I’m a decent human being).

       

      Well I just spent the day cleaning up after the guests who ( you would think ) would be at least half way classy... but nooooooooo.

       

      They repaid my act of kindness by acting like &%#*’ing pigs.

       

      I did make them sign an RA but did not make them give me a DD.

       

      Here is the rundown (thankfully my housekeeper is on vacation so she didn’t have to deal with it)

       

      • Dog poop all over the yard (yes I allowed a pet like a *******)
      • Ruined plastic dog toys strewn about the yard
      • Shooting debris from unauthorized target practice
      • Toothpaste spit on the wall next to the sink
      • Bacon grease all over the stovetop
      • Two sets of king sheets in the dirty pile (and I only have one king bed)
      • Large clump of women’s hair on the shower floor
      • A tidy pile of pubes next to the sink (ick)

       

      The moral of this story? Damage Deposits are VERY effective. AND if you give it away, guests will treat it with equal value.

       

      NEVER. AGAIN.

        • Re: My first charity auction will be my last charity auction
          scowol Active Contributor

          Sorry to hear about your awful experience.  I sadly had the same experience, and so it was a lesson-learned.  It's also a double money-loser because I learned that donating nights to charity of a vacation rental is NOT a tax write-off.  I didn't believe it, so I did some research and sure enough.

           

          https://kahnlitwin.com/insights/think-twice-before-donating-a-vacation-home-stay-to-charity

           

          I have friends asking all the time to donate and telling me "you can write it off!"   Um, nope.  It's a myth.  The reason I say it's a double-money loser is because in addition to no tax write-off, you lose out on potential rent by blocking revenue for the donated nights, and pay for the operating expenses.   So only donate out of pure goodness of your heart and if you have a thick wallet.  

          • Re: My first charity auction will be my last charity auction
            hmmmm Senior Contributor

            This was my lesson as well.
            Not fun, and I would only even consideration it with a large refundable deposit and a large cleaning fee.  Large did I say Large

             

            Yes and no its not a write offfffffffffffffff.

             

            And I would add that some people, friends too, are under the misunderstanding that some of us use this as an income as well.

             

            Would I ask them to donate their paycheck for a week to a charity?

             

            And I would not hesitate to let the "friend"  know the results of your good deed.

              • Re: My first charity auction will be my last charity auction
                scowol Active Contributor

                Indeed.  I'll add further that, today, my rentals are not profitable (as many are not, namely due to forgotten depreciation of the dwelling capitalization, which is 27.5 years on a 1040 tax return for a vacation rental).  Ultimately they will be a profitable nest egg, but today I just about break even.  Yes, vacation rentals may rake in a lot of income, but the operating expenses and capitalization is oftentimes overlooked.

              • Re: My first charity auction will be my last charity auction
                captmarkhd Senior Contributor

                I‘m sorry for your heartache, no good deed goes unpunished!!! I had a similar experience for a charity auction. A group of adult women came to my home and trashed it! According to my onsite staff they were partying  the entire time, broke many items in the house including two glass refrigerator shelves And they complained the entire time and were just plain rude to my staff. I still use my home for charities but what I do instead Is to have a raffle through the Charities  Go fund me account. I only open the raffle up to my former guest so I know who I am dealing with. I have done this twice now and has worked out fantastic!

                • Re: My first charity auction will be my last charity auction
                  green_mango Active Contributor

                  Sorry - that's awful! 

                   

                  I've had better luck thankfully - our VR has been the prize at two charity auctions.  In both cases, I sold the nights to a parent at the school for a small discount, and then the parents made the donation to the school - so, I got paid (just slightly less than my usual rate) & I collected a deposit (and returned in full both times).  

                   

                  When charities ask me to donate straight out they get a little education in how that is not a tax-write-off for me, so I prefer to donate cash. 

                  • Re: My first charity auction will be my last charity auction
                    twobitrentals CommunityAmbassador

                    Well I did a private charity of sorts. I offered up my home for a week stay at $20.00 per name entered. Not only did I raise a little bit of money for a very needy family but the lady who won the trip said she wouldn’t be staying, she just wanted to donate to the cause. She told me to try and rent it for my normal rate and donate that as well. So, while it sounds like all charitable situations are bad, mine was not.

                     

                    As for the tax write off, I wasn’t too worried I just wanted to help just like each of you.

                     

                    Based on your comments I would definitely get a deposit if the situation arose again. (Thank you for sharing)

                    • Re: My first charity auction will be my last charity auction
                      bonesxxx Active Contributor

                      Thanks all. Misery enjoys company and you all made me feel better about how upset I was.

                       

                      What I forgot to mention is that they also used my good Calphalon cook pot as a doggie bowl. Seriously? What kind of ignoramous does that? And it logically follows that if they did that, they might also assume that every other dish and utensil in the House had been used at some point by someone as a toss pot

                       

                      they hey left a note in the guestbook that they will be coming back... oh no they won’t.

                      • Re: My first charity auction will be my last charity auction
                        vrdoctor Senior Contributor

                        We did a charity auction for our school one year and regretted it for similar reasons.  Our neighbors from down the street booked our cabin and left it kind of a mess.  We didn't collect any security deposit but we would not have made a claim as we would not have wanted hard feelings between neighbors.  We opted to not donate our cabin stays for any future events.

                        • Re: My first charity auction will be my last charity auction
                          thaxterlane Premier Contributor

                          Donating a stay can be a minefield for owners who are not experienced . . . Always use a rental agreement (yes!) and always charge a fully refundable security deposit, preferably from the guest and not the organization.  Prior to the auction, set the dates that are available for the stay, set the house rules, and set the rental process - and PRINT IT for distribution to interested bidders.  Set a reserve price, in addition to the value of the stay, if possible, too.  I have donated a stay at my home three times to benefit local groups.  It's gone well due to planning before the stay has been put to auction.