Caretaking – What a Wonderful Life

I would guess there are very few people in this world that would say they have the perfect job. This statement may be a little off the wall but given that a building caretaker job calls for mature (seniors and retirees welcome) people, Irma and I can testify that this career is outstanding!

We Loved The Career

Caretaking – what a wonderful life my wife Irma and I have enjoyed. We went from being jobless and too old for an employer to consider, to being comfortably set up in a nice apartment, good salaries, benefits and working from home. We didn’t need to commute to work. We had free parking, phones, cable TV, internet, holidays and vacations.

Working Together.

In a way, we looked after the house. We did what most couples do; we cleaned and repaired things as they became dirty or worn out. The only difference for us was that our house was big. One of our last caretaker jobs consisted of 126 rooms. Since it was a condominium we didn’t need to do anything inside those rooms because we worked together. This is why we can say caretaking is such a wonderful life.

Irma was an expert detailer; she was happiest cleaning around the laundry or the elevators and lobby. Men simply don’t have a penchant for this kind of work. We don’t see where a child might have placed his or her hand on a glass entry door. I could busy myself mopping the lobby floor, cleaning the garbage room, changing the compactor or running the backup generator. We worked as a team. She knew me so well and we are now counting down to our 60th wedding anniversary.

Financially, We Were Now Sound.

We had our government pensions coming in as well as our salaries. Things had greatly improved for us since we found our first caretaking job.

We would start our day with a nice 45-minute walk in a park across the street. By 8:00 AM we would be checking out the building and getting busy cleaning the lobby, laundry room and elevators. I would do a walkabout on each floor and the roof. From the roof I could eyeball the surrounding grounds and I would check the garbage rooms. At 10:00 AM we would stop for coffee and by that time, we would have an idea of what was urgent and needed to be deal with right away. I would meet with the property manager for a few minutes around 11:30 and then Irma and I would clean the recreation centre and pool. By noon, we were off to have lunch.

Our Regular Work Day

We would vacuum the hallways once weekly and our dumpsters needed changing as required. I was responsible for maintaining the cleaning supplies for two similar towers so I sometimes needed to go to the wholesalers for more goods. I was paid extra for this as well as for maintaining the locks in those other buildings as well. Once a week I ran the backup generator and the other two caretakers and I would test the fire alarms. Once that was done, we three couples would get together for coffee and sweets at which time we would discuss any urgent problems. As need be we would check the grounds outside, and perhaps rake up leaves around the tennis court. We had a snowblower to keep the snow cleared away from the driveway and walkways.

Generally by 3:00 or 3:30 our day’s work would be finished and we would be back in our apartment. After 4:00 PM we were free. Our answering machine would record any calls if we were away.

The Benefits Were Excellent

We worked a five-day week, earned $46,000 per year and paid $475 per month in rent. The apartment we had was very nice with a living room, bedroom, kitchen and bath. Similar apartments rented for $1,100 in the area. Now this was the reason why I often stated that caretaking was such a wonderful life.

Is Every Caretaking Job Like This?

I would say this was average. Rental buildings were a little more work but if I had to ever do it over again caretaking would be my top job on the list.

The great advantage we had over younger folks was that because we were older we were in high demand by property managers. They want older, more mature couples. What other job is there where being a senior, retiree, or mature worker is an asset?

16 years experience went into our book.

  • Writing your resume
  • Finding a job
  • Job interview
  • Rental buildings
  • Condominiums
  • Daily routines
  • Waste management
  • Fixing things

Benefits you may receive such as;

  • Rent reduction
  • Working from home
  • Free parking, phones, cable, hydro,
  • Vacations
  • Stat holidays
  • Salaries
  • Dental

Once you have read CARETAKERS you will be ready to hit the job market.