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$7,000 is a lot of $$$

November 28th, 2017 at 04:42 am

That's how much I could pay for the install of the stand-by Generac generator ($5,000) and the install of the propane tank and gas lines ($2,000).

I went into this thinking I would use the electrician I've used for several small jobs over the years (he moonlights on weekends but works f/t at a generator company), so I didn't get any other bids for his end of the work.

But now I'm thinking, that's silly, because 1) he's not doing the actual work itself, and 2) he can't control my costs since it's not his company.

So I decided I would get one more bid for the electrical end of the work, since that's the lion's share of the cost. I found him on Angie's List and he has 59 "A" ratings, far more than anyone else.

He can't come out til next week, though, so this delays everything.

I now have 2 estimates for the gas line connection, although the one guy hasn't given me anything in writing, just a phone estimate, which is about the same price as the other guy.

Strategy: I will call the one guy who went to the trouble of showing up here, explain it's a "tie" between his price and the other guy's, and ask if he can do any better on the price to give me a reason to hire him. If I could save a few hundred on the price, that would be great.

I imagine the payback on this generator will be quite lengthy, but the peace of mind and comfort factor is really what I'm paying for.

A small payday
My paycheck this Thursday (I get paid weekly) will be quite small since I only worked a 3-day week.

Mouse in the House
Earlier this fall, I noticed some herbal mouse deterrents at Lowe's and picked up 3 of them. Nothing to lose by trying. I put them in the areas of the basement where I think Luther catches his mice and until last night, they appeared to be working.

I was watching TV in bed when I heard a telltale squeak. Or was it coming from the TV? I got up and walked all around, looking for Luther, and finally found him in my upstairs bathroom. The poor mouse had climbed up the vinyl shower curtain and was clinging to it precariously. Luther didn't know where it went and was nosing around.

I quickly ran downstairs to the basement where I knew I had an empty cardboard box. I came back up, hoping the mouse was right where I left it. It was. I quickly tapped on the other side of the shower curtain while holding the box up on the side where the mouse was, and it landed perfectly in the box.

I released it outside. That was one of the lucky ones. I blocked the cat entrance in the door to the basement so I could get a good night's sleep without worrying about more live mice.

Capital improvements
Once I get this generator, I hope it will be the last pricey home improvement I make for a while.

There are other things I know I will do that aren't quite so pricey.

1. Beef up my attic insulation.

2. I would at some point like to replace my wood garage door. I remember everyone was trying to persuade me to go with a metal door, but no, I liked the look of wood better, but 13 years later, the door looks kind of like an eyesore as moisture/rain/snow has wicked up through the wood and warped the plywood panels in the carriage door style door.

Daydreams
Of course, I've always wanted a new kitchen, but that's such an expensive, overwhelming and disruptive project I have no desire to do it now. I have white laminate cabinets and some kind of manmade counters and it's too much white for me: white cabinets, white counters, white backsplash. Everything's a little worn around the edges, but perfectly functional.

The walls in the downstairs: I would love to get new drywall walls in here, another major disruptive project. This is an old house and old beaverboard (precursor to sheetrock) had layers of wallpaper PAINTED OVER. That's why the paint keeps coming up and cracking. The wallpaper was never removed. It's a mess and there's no use repainting as it only lasts a few years and then it cracks again. I will have to address this at some point.

The upstairs hardwood floors could really use a refinishing.

I would love to replace my upstairs bathroom cabinet, another laminate type job and part of the trim is coming off (tried gluing it back on already). But I have a pocket door opening to that bathroom and I can't even imagine getting a new cabinet in there, or the old one out.

My front door: It's narrower than today's standard width. I think it's just 30 inches wide and getting stuff in and out, like furniture, can be a challenge. I'd love to get a new door and wider opening.




2 Responses to “$7,000 is a lot of $$$”

  1. rob62521 Says:

    I think you are smart to get another bid. Sorry about the delay, but it may be worth it if the bid comes in lower.

  2. snafu Says:

    Having planned and carried out several remodel projects, I bravely mention it always costs more than anticipated.. Too often there is some issue hiding behind the wall, electric that no longer meets code, plumbing corrodes, or some level of rot in floor boards. I think youve already acknowledge walls are not 'true.' The old cupboard is demolished on site, adding the danger of large nails to threaten injury as you carry it to the dumpster. Assemble new on site.

    Chalk paint is easy to use if you want to change the color of cabinets. Although maddeningly expensive, it is easier to use and get a professional look.

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