Delay after delay after delay: why residents of Dover Coast Adult Community are up in arms

Delay after delay after delay: why residents of Dover Coast Adult Community are up in arms
PORT DOVER—The view from behind a series of condos as residents await outside work to be completed in phases one and two of the development. —Haldimand Press photos by Mike Renzella.


Doug Ward and his wife Linda Vanderkolk stand in the field of weeds that is supposed to be their private back patio backing onto an 18-hole golf course.

By Mike Renzella

The Haldimand Press

PORT DOVER—When Doug Ward and his wife Linda Vanderkolk purchased their home in Port Dover’s newest adult active lifestyle community in June of 2017, they were sold on the idea of a carefree life in a vibrant community near the coast of Lake Erie. What they got instead was a three-year-long whirlwind of delays, excuses, and mounting expenses.

“Our original closing was scheduled for May 25, 2018. We were delayed, which was not totally unexpected, with a new closing of July 2018. We therefore sold our home in July 2018. Since then we have had 13 closing delays over two years and we have moved and stayed in 18 different places during that time because of the numerous delays and short notices given,” said Ward.

Those delays added up to $20,000 in storage fees and an additional $30,000 in short -erm rental costs, forcing them to dip into both their retirement savings and the capital earned from the sale of their home.

According to Ward, some delays were not communicated until days before closing, forcing him and his wife to scramble to find yet another short-term solution. Ward said John Lennox, Construction Manager for the development, has given a long list of excuses.

“First he blamed the town, saying that they would not issue building permits…. Then he said he can’t proceed because there is a water shortage in town. True, but the water restrictions did not apply to construction projects already underway. Next he blamed the trades, stating that Port Dover was too far for some trades to travel to…. Then the blame fell on COVID,” said Ward.

The couple finally moved in this June, but they quickly discovered their home was still missing vital components.

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