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Why don't other tenants help me shovel snow?

For six years, I have l shoveled shared walkways and the parking lot for two triplexes where I live. Pushing, lifting and throwing heavy snow, ice and slush is hard work.

I am the only person who shovels snow. Why don't men in the complex help me? This floors me. Eight to 10 men live in the two triplexes. Four are young guys.

In the winter, I keep my snow shovel under the outdoor stairway. Snow shoveling is great exercise. I consider it part of my public service.

We had record-breaking snow in February 2019.

Maybe I could I buy another snow shovel and say," Let's do this as a team."

Your thoughts?

By LiterateHiker8
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When I was a renter it was in the contract that the management handled snow removal, and indeed all maintenance inside and out. You might want to check your lease. If management is not paying you in some form or fashion they may be taking advantage of you, and IF you get hurt they may be liable for your injuries. This could open a can of worms.


The law in Wenatchee is that homeowners and apartment owners are required to clear all walkways of snow within 24 hours. Many don't.

The snowplow doesn't always come and does a lousy job anyway, The driveway is aggregate with many cracks. He sets the snowplow blade high, leaving behind a lot of snow. Dumps it without caring about snowmelt (= ice) on the pavement.

I have been clearing it for my own and other's safety. With record-breaking snow, it has become too much. More snow is forecast for the next two days.

I'm going to talk to the manager and tell her I'm tired of shoveling. My upper back hurts. She needs to do the job or pay someone to do it.


It's like the parent that never let their kid do anything, and now the kid is a lazy
piece of shit.
You shoveled, by yourself, for too long, and now they expect it.

Don't expect assistance, and you won't be disappointed when you don't get it.
I'm not trying to be harsh with you, just honest. You're too damned nice and now they're taking advantage of you.
If you can afford it, and have someplace to keep it, get yourself a snowblower, so
you don't kill yourself.
While it might be good exercise, an over-abundance of it will fucking kill you.

Although, if you were to keel over while shoveling, the other tenants might try to force management into hiring someone. Or you could just post an open letter to everyone involved, telling them you're done and they're all on their own.
It's not worth having a heart attack over.
No matter how good of shape you think you're in, if you're over 45, you're at risk, too.
I say all this with love, not malice.

KKGator Level 9 Mar 10, 2019


Thank you. I'm 65.

@LiterateHiker Well, DAMN woman! They should all be totin' you around in a gold-plated sedan chair, when you're of a mind, of course.
I know you're all kinds of healthy and stuff, but don't overdo it. smile009.gif


Are you saying men should do more manual labor than women? Both sexes have arms. Have you seen any of the #trashtag pics? Everyone can help out. So many questions I have for you. Are you getting paid to shovel? If yes, don't complain. If no, don't complain online to people who literally can't help you at all. Are these triplexes owned by the individuals? If yes, it's their problem not yours. If they don't own them and are renting then the landlord is responsible unless otherwise stated in the lease. Should people help each other out with snow shoveling? Well sure that's a great thing to do. Should someone call out one sex on their unwillingness to help out? Probably not.

McWalsoft Level 6 Mar 10, 2019


I am not paid to shovel. With global warming, snow warms, melts during the day, then turns into hard ice as the sun goes down. It's extremely dangerous.

On the north side of the building, the parking lot gets no sun in the winter. The driveway slants downward. During the day, snow melts a little, and runs between our cars and front doors. Turns into a skating rink. Also the weight of cars packs down snow, turning it into ice.

The snowplow only comes when we have a snowfall of 5-6" or more. Last time it snowed, we got 4". The snowplow didn't show up.

Starting at the top of the parking lot, I clear snow away. It's for our safety.

There is so much wrong with your response to this post.
Shame on you.


Is there a bulletin board in any of the common areas? Post an invite or share these thoughts. Also as another commenter pointed out, talk to the owners/managers for some sort of reimbursement.

If it started to bug me too much in that situation, I'd buy me a set of those slip-on traction treads for shoes and boots I've been seeing in online ads, and laugh my ass off when the owners got sued because someone slipped. That sounds heartless I know, but you've described a situation where no one else seems to care about others, so it's not unreasonable for you to look out for yourself above all else.

I'd bet if you ceased your charitable act, someone would eventually ask you about it. That would be a great time to vent, no?


My wife and I shovel our driveway and sidewalk. We enjoy it as exercise. We both feel a sense of accomplishment when we're done. We've the largest driveway in our 'burb, and we only use shovels. We're also the oldest couple. All the other folks have snowblowers. When I'm occasionally asked why we don't get one, my reply is; "Well, when we're old and weak, I might." smile009.gif


Is it possible that they might think that you are performing a paid service? In helping you, they might be pulling money from your pocket? Or, maybe you live amongst a high concentration of lazy, inconsiderate fucks?

Good thinking. I hadn't thought of those angles...


I have one of these. I love it!!

linxminx Level 7 Mar 10, 2019

I shovel the snow where I live, I don't expect help. I also throw down salt, there are 6 townhouses where I live. The lady next door is handicapped so I clear her car and steps also. I also pick up garbage people throw out on the ground. I do these things because I can. I could wait for management to do it but they literally own 100's of apartments and I would have to wait-they do get the parking lot though. I am the only guy with a shovel and I only work part-time because I'm retired, everyone else here makes little money and most work 2 jobs. I would like to catch that little bitch that throws her Mountain Dew cans on the ground all the time though, that's just ghetto.


Good for you! Like you, I am the only person who picks up litter.


I would edit "Men" to "Other Tenants."

Just saying.


Good point. I changed it to "other tenants." Thanks for your suggestion.


No idea. I would ask them , i don't understand why common courtesy has gone out the window. A number of times I was on a bus in Portland when elders(not saying anyone here is old) would get on bus very young people would remain seated. I would give up my seat and speak to the younger people about why they should have done what I just did! If I was there I would help out of common neighborly decency


It's very possible they just don't care if it is shoveled or not. If they don't care, but you do, I can see where they wouldn't help. It's like if one roomate cares if dishes are immediately clean and one only cares that they're cleaned once a week. Caring on your part doesn't constitute caring on their part.

There is no DAMN way leaving dishes unwashed in a communal area is OK.

You want roaches?

I would put unwashed dishes on their unmade bed on day 2.


I would suggest a written letter, mailed to these inhabitants, asking them directly why they don't "pitch in for the neighborhood's sake". I would further ask them why they turn their back on one person doing all the work all the time. (I probably would piss them off too, for my directness.)


I do not have to do my own snow living in a condo townhouse but sometimes the hired dudes don’t arrive because there is not enough. So I do it then and a few neighbours while I am at it.

ToolGuy Level 8 Mar 10, 2019

Too much work. Maybe they think why should we work if she does it and we do not have to.

DenoPenno Level 8 Mar 10, 2019

Screw that, if I’m renting the landlord can do it. That said, I live in the tropicssmile001.gif


You probably shouldn't wear that optic yellow vest while shoveling the snow.

Condor5 Level 8 Mar 11, 2019

There was a gal in one of the townhome buildings in my development that shoveled out the whole building and the connector sidewalk to the nature path and I'll bet she was asking the same question.

The easy answer is, because they don't have to and she didn't ask.

Also, ironically, the HOA recently hired someone to do it for the whole development, and now she's been relieved of duty, effectively.

I would not assume everyone is a freeloader though. I saw her doing that, and I didn't help. My excuse is I'm under doctor's orders not to chop wood, shovel snow, or lift anything over 30 pounds.

The other factor in play is that neighborhoods aren't what they used to be. They are places to crash at night, and your friendships come to you more via your vocation or avocation or church or other community involvement. All the private homes here have Victorian front porches and no one uses them and no one engages in the 1950s pastime of an evening stroll chatting with the neighbors as you pass. Try that here in the 21st century and people just look at you funny. I think this extends to helping each other out.

In my defense I have made a point to insert myself in the life of the man across the street whose wife died a couple of months ago, I have tried really hard to be present for him and I like to think I've been neighborly, but he frankly doesn't know quite what to do with it.

It's a different world than the one we grew up in, I guess.

mordant Level 8 Mar 10, 2019

Do you know that they are all physically capable. I can't imagine that eight are incapable. But if you were to look at me, you would think that I'm capable. But after 3 neck surgeries, I'm not supposed to lift more than 10 pounds. Otherwise, I'd be the first one out there helping you. If I were you I'd definitely ask for the help, but be ready for the reality that some of them may have reasons that they can't help.


They aren't because you are. People are lazy. Either that or they think it's a service included in their rent/mortgage.

Go on strike and see what happens. ?

BeeHappy Level 9 Mar 11, 2019


Today I called the manager and told her I am not going to shovel anymore. With global warming, it means shoveling heavy, thick ice.

"People need to be careful," she said about the ice. "I'm not going to get it sparkling clean."

In other words, the parking lot and walkways will be icy and unsafe. I will need micro-spikes to walk to my car.

@LiterateHiker Well be careful. Don't they have something they can sprinkle on the ice?


Salt just loosens ice, so you can shovel it off. Ice refreezes at night.

The only way to make pavement safe is to physically shovel (lift) off snow, ice and slush, throwing it onto grass or flower beds. There is no easy fix.

I know this from experience.

@LiterateHiker That sucks!


Well, since you originally called out men (and still do beyond the edited headline), I'd imagine it's for the same reason the women don't help you shovel.


Have you asked for help? Perhaps they think it is your job.


I asked one man for help. His father-in-law shamed him into shoveling heavy ice and slush for five minutes.

@LiterateHiker people have gotten lazy. I think someone mentioned that your apartment owner may have legal responsibility for this task. You should check with the City Clerk; they will know. If you work, you can usually talk to them by phone. City Clerks usually know everything...or know where to find out.


The law in Wenatchee is that homeowners and apartment owners are required to clear all walkways of snow within 24 hours. Many don't.

@LiterateHiker follow up


Thanks, everybody!

After reading your comments, I decided to talk to the manager and tell her I'm tired of shoveling. My upper back hurts. She needs to do the job or hire someone.

The law in Wenatchee is that homeowners and apartment owners are required to clear all walkways of snow within 24 hours. Many don't.

The snowplow doesn't always come and does a lousy job. The driveway is aggregate with many cracks. He sets the snowplow blade high, leaving a lot of snow. Dumps it without caring about how snowmelt creates ice.

I have been shoveling it for my own and other's safety. With record-breaking snow in Feb. 2019, it has become too much. More snow is forecast in the next two days. In 2004, the last snowfall was June 4. I shook my fist at the sky.

"My back, my back!" my ex-husband moaned. Yet Terry played tennis five days a week. I did all of the snow shoveling and for the elderly lady next door.

Also, I did all of the leaf-raking with a massive, 80-year old Norway Maple in our front yard. The tree canopy shaded our backyard and extended over the street.

That Norway Maple dropped zillions of big leaves late in fall. I stood in swirling snow, raking madly.

After our divorce, Terry replaced me with a leaf blower and snowblower.

It's embarrassing how lazy the younger generations have become. I say that in general because I know not all of them are lazy but it is definitely noticeable


Maybe they know "you are woman and want to hear you roar".

dahermit Level 7 Mar 10, 2019

Since you always do it maybe they think you get paid for it? It is the responsibility of the owners to maintain safe walkways, parking lots, and all common areas. Your legal status is that of what is called an invitee. You are owed the highest degree of care which means the duty to make safe and to warn of any danger on the property.


Why buy the cow when you get the milk for free?


All I can do is answer in the manner people I do not know and will probably never meet would, I think, "Look, she is doing all the work, since she is doing fine and never complains I will just enjoy the view." If I were there I would at least try to help and both my knees are shot.

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