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The rules of engagement for owning a share in a family holiday home

Media Release 

Sydney, NSW (3 January 2018) The holidays are a time for families to bond and have fun — and a period when family members desire to take advantage of their conjointly owned holiday homes.

Supplied by Raine & Horne Terrigal

“Homeownership is the original Great Australian Dream, and increasingly securing a share in a family holiday home is a dream for increasing numbers of Australians,” said Angus Raine, Executive Chairman Raine & Horne.

“If you are own a share in a holiday home, it’s crucial that you and the other family members, who are co-owners, establish the rules of engagement for the use, management, and maintenance of the shared property.”

Managing peak periods

Family members would do well to agree to an accommodation schedule for the holiday home, noted Mr Raine.

“Some weeks such as Christmas and Easter, which is just 12 weeks away, are more prized than others, but by taking a common-sense approach, it’s possible to come to a solution that’s suitable to all parties,” he said. 

“It might be that those family members who can be more flexible with their time, may be able to stay at the property in non-peak times.

“Once there is an agreement, the dates can be included in the accommodation schedule, which is shared with all owners.”

Sharing the cleaning

The responsibilities for cleaning a shared family holiday home should be addressed early. From the outset, all owners should agree about how the property should be left after a holiday stay, advised Mr Raine.

“To make certain the home is spotless for every new arrival, all owners could agree to pay for a professional cleaner whenever they exit the property,” said Mr Raine.

Dirty linen should never be an issue according to Mr Raine. To ensure clean linen is never an issue, occupants could take their towels and bedding to the holiday home and remove it with them when they leave.

“At all times, the holiday home should be left in an orderly way to minimise possible squabbles. And don’t forget to leave behind a full gas bottle for the barbecue,” said Mr Raine.

Supplied by Raine & Horne Terrigal

Repairs and maintenance

Mr Raine advises that agreeing on the financing of repairs and maintenance expenses is essential.

“Contributing to a sinking fund is one method to ensure there is a kitty for repairs and maintenance.  This is an arrangement used in strata properties, where all owners contribute an amount to upkeep. The contribution each owner makes to the sinking fund could be determined by how often they use the property,” he said.

Alternatively, maintenance and repairs can be paid as required, or if there are some handy types among the family, they can fix leaking taps, slap on some paint and maintain the gardens themselves.

If either of these options do not work for the family, then an old fashion working bee could be a fantastic way to keep the holiday home spick-and-span, according to Mr Raine.

“By getting the owners together to do the maintenance work, the owners will not only save money, but it is a valuable opportunity for a family bonding session.”

Breakages, according to Mr Raine, should be addressed immediately.

“If you crack a glass or lose some cutlery, just fess up and replace it. It’s only fair that when the next family members arrive at the shared holiday home that they can use a kitchen that is well-stocked with the basics such as plates, cups, and glasses,” Mr Raine said.


For further media information contact:

Kim Pilkington, Communications Executive, Raine & Horne Group on 0414 358 722