If you cut me open, the word BUDGET would be written through me like some kind of novelty stick of rock.
Practically everything we do or buy is done with a budget in mind, and maintenance, upkeep and repairs are no exception.
We always look at the potential cost of running anything before we purchase it, but sometimes there comes a point when you have to say enough is enough, and whatever has failed is designated to the bin. The question is, where to draw that line.
I have said in several previous posts that Hubby is useful.
As my Dad used to say ‘ I wouldn’t have done it quite that way myself, but it works.’
Hubby is inventive (he once converted a black and white TV set to a PC monitor for a customer whose computer system wasn’t compatible with anything available to purchase).
He is also practical, and when he was in the electrical repairs business, he set his BER at 2/3 or 65% of the replacement purchase price. He also never took offense if anyone wanted to get a second opinion from one of the more ‘elite’ computer repair companies.
B E R stands for Beyond Economical Repair (just in case you weren’t aware of this fact), and basically, Hubby could fix practically anything with a 3 pin plug on it.
He was very popular with the little old ladies as he never ripped them off, offered discounts for pensioners, and if doing a job for a friend, would more than likely only charge for parts, with perhaps a cake thrown in if the friend was female.
Unfortunately, no-one in their right mind would pay £15 to fix a toaster/kettle/hairdryer when you could go to one of the larger supermarkets and buy a new one for four.
Hubby admits to thus being a dinosaur, and we all know what happened to them, so it was good that things didn’t stop at electrical stuff.
Before cars were manufactured with electronic gadgetry and computer chips for everything except driving the damn thing (though driverless cars are not that far away from our roads I understand), Hubby used to do his own servicing and oil changes.
Allowances are always made for normal wear and tear (tyres, wiper blades, bulbs, exhaust etc) as well as general servicing, but when things start to cost megga bucks to keep going, then decisions have to be made. Although both of our Peugeot vehicles were running well, they were nine and ten years old, so we decided to change whilst things were still in our favour, and we are down to one vehicle now.
Grease monkeys (aka good mechanics) were worth their weight in gold years ago, and should you break down, Roadside Assistance normally got you going merrily on your way with a smile and a wave from the AA man.
Not so today, if the chip ain’t worth it’s salt, you’re towed mate!
Over the years, Hubby kept on top of the maintenance of our properties, and our joint efforts at keeping our fence panels at our last house under control is well documented.
Now that we no longer have that particular set of problems, the boat will come under his TLC, mine too, as we deal with the small annoying little problems as and when they arise rather than leave them until they become major issues.
Once again though, cost effectiveness will come into play.
You said it all in that last paragraph – Fix it before it becomes a major problem. I too will try and fix pretty much anything (success rate pretty good!) and am lost for words when I see what other people are ignoring. Currently it is ice build up on the eaves-troughs which is creeping back and lifting the roof shingles/tiles. All because of poor/no insulation in the roof space. I guess everybody has their own priorities!
We understood we were eligible for a grant/reduced cost for loft insulation in our last house (a 160 year old former school with false ceilings when converted to a private residence). The council preferred company rep costed the job at £150 but took one look in the roof space and said no way as it was so shallow. We took advantage of a DIY outlet with special offer of buy one get three free on foil lined insulation rolls, and using our drain rods (!) did the job ourselves. Total cost using 10 rolls (but had to ‘buy’ 12), £52. Good luck with your problem.
Just a clarification. We don’t have the ice build up problem. That was just an example of what we see in our area when taking Ray for his walks! 🙂
ah. sorry! With you now.
Maybe it is our “generation” but we also fix and mend things as much as possible. New stuff is so poorly made these days, I’d rather have a mended old thing anyway 🙂 You are lucky “hubby” is so talented 🙂
Couldn’t agree more. It’s a throw away society these days and things are not built to last. Yes, I am lucky with Hubby, I was told to keep him as he’s useful! 😀
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