Sorry for all the words that are about to happen. We’re good about waiting for sales and we do a decent job at spreading big purchases out over time. We haven’t had to squirrel away money for months to afford something. Until now.
Until now, our major purchases were a mattress (hello, clearance sale), a fridge (thank you, Black Friday) and a sofa (bye bye, tax refund). But there are a few major home projects that we want to take on that will take a hefty bite from our nest egg.
We’ve done research, picked out what we want, gotten quotes, etc. etc.
Fence – $2,500
Two of our three neighbors have fences. We’d like to finish enclosing our yard for privacy and for the sake of our dog. Our only quote (so far) set the price for a 6′ wooden privacy fence at $2,500. I’ve called other companies – one never returned my call, another couldn’t take on more clients.
To DIY or hire out? We’re on the fence about it, pun intended. We like the work the company we got the quote from does. They knock out installation in two days, whereas it’ll take us several weekends, for sure. It’d be a bit of balancing act with our HOA too – they’re not terribly strict, but we’re not sure if they’d approve a DIY fence.
Conclusion: There’s no pressing need for a fence. We don’t have kids yet, and even if we had one in the next year, that kid won’t be running around for nearly two years. And given that the professional install takes two days, it’ll be the easiest project we ever take on. We’re just not committed to spending the cash on something that’s mostly a “nice to have” feature.
Wood Flooring – $5,000+
Our house is 85% carpet right now (12% linoleum in the kitchen and master bathroom, 3% tile in the hall bathroom). The carpet is about 15 years old. For an inexpensive builder-grade carpet, it’s at the end of its life. Even with frequent vacuuming, it’s just gross. We want to replace it with wood flooring.
I’ve visited Lumber Liquidators a few times to pick up samples. There are A LOT of things to consider when picking out flooring. Thickness, width, installation type, wood type, finish. We picked out a bamboo click-install floor that we really like, but the flooring plus underlayment will run us around $5,000, maybe even $6,000 when we add in buying a table saw, delivery/renting a truck, quarter rounds, etc.
Conclusion: The expense takes our nest egg uncomfortably low, so we need to properly pinch pennies for this project. It’s something we definitely want to have done before we bring a baby home (could you imagine trying to DIY a floor with an infant in the home? No, me neither), so it takes priority over the fence. I’ll be price watching it, so we might snap it up on some random clearance weekend. Until then, we’ll be taking especially good care of our carpet to extend its life.
Patio and Deck Outdoor Oasis – $???
The current state of the backyard: blah. Our deck is positively treacherous. It looks like the original stain was applied when it was built, then never, ever touched up or resealed. The wood is a splinter nightmare. We want to take out 75% of the deck (leaving the bones, which appear to be in decent condition) and replace the decking, rails and steps.
I expertly photoshopped this image a while back:
The outdoor oasis project will include changing the position of the deck steps, laying a stone patio, buy and/or building furniture and planting a couple of dwarf trees and plenty of flowers. Estimated cost? We’re not sure. The decking boards will be around $225. We haven’t made any decisions on the railing or balusters, which will be a significant cost. Then there’s staining and sealing. I think we can do it for less than a grand.
Then there’s the patio. We have done zero research on this, but I’m guessing it’ll fall around the same price as the fence. That, of course depends on the size of the patio.
Conclusion: We’re going to tackle at least phase one (the deck) of this project this summer, and we’re going to try to do it while continuing to save up for that wood flooring. Haha. GOOD LUCK, AMIRITE?
How do you deal with big purchases for your home? Save up? Charge it to credit and dance in the reward points?