From Dan Harding on November 18, 2008 in Remodeling News
Sometimes remodeling can get a little odd. Even more often, money can set good friends at odds. Both were the case in Cleveland where a remodeling contractor, who was old friends with his client, discovered $182,000 stashed in an old bathroom wall. The ensuing hours-worth of dialogue appears to have gone something like this:
Ooo-ee, hoor-AY! (Bob Kitts - contractor)
HA-HA! YES! (Amanda Reece - homeowner)
Photos were taken, complete with wads of 1920s cash and kid-in-the-candy-store smiles.
Woohoo! Oh Yeah!
You can have 10 percent, its my house.
I want 40 percent, I found it.
Then things degraded. The proverbial record player came to a screeching halt. The party was over. The two argued and argued and insulted each other until finally lawyers and courts became involved. By the end, the rather large family of Patrick Dunne the man who stashed the money so long ago—was in on the case. Everybody was looking for their share.
It all started when Kitts was demolishing Reeces bathroom walls during her remodel. He found two metal lockboxes inside the wall below the medicine cabinet. Needless to say Kitts got them open and found several envelopes (with P. Dunne News Agency written on them) full of fifty dollar bills from the 1920s and 30s.
Reece and Kitts were former high school classmates but still couldnt work things out and, in the end, nearly lost it all. After Reece spent a decent percentage of it, after $60,000 was allegedly stolen and phone threats made, and after Dunnes 21 surviving descendants sued for the cash, there wasnt much left to go around.
I just cant help but laugh at this wonderful fable; Aesop couldnt have written it better himself. The moral being; if you find a stash of money with your friend, for Gods sake SPLIT IT UP! Greed and selfishness can be powerful forces, we all know that, but this was free money…found in a wall! Split it up, shake hands, and take a day or two off work. Its that simple.
It is certainly a creative way to pay for your remodel.