Friday, March 6, 2009

So You Better Shop Around.....

Two years ago I moved into a beautiful house that I fell in love with as soon as I walked in the door.Actually it has great curb appeal too. It has wonderful molding and high ceilings and a winding staircase and a fireplace with a mantle to die for. It was built in 1932. It had a new bathroom downstairs and 2 70's style bathrooms upstairs.

I'm going to take a minute to tell you a BIG FRUGAL TIP now. And if you listen to this ONE tip you can probably save as much money as by using ALL THE OTHER TIPS ON THIS BLOG. The tip is this-NO MATTER WHAT. DO NOT BUY AN OLD HOUSE WITH OLD BATHROOMS. There now. That was pretty straightforward right? DO NOT be lured in by crown molding or inlaid floors or whatever else it is that gets your personal house hunting heart pumping. If the place has old bathrooms run. JUST run. Thank the Realtor and look for another house.

Um yeah, so I did not do that. 3 mos after buying the house, the shower in the master bath began leaking into the only nice bathroom downstairs. Ruined the ceiling and we called a bath designer who came up with all kinds of lovely bathroom ideas that came with a big price tag. Well no problem we say, we'll just shower in our daughter's full size bathroom while we save up for a beautiful bathroom re-do. That has worked for 2 years until last week when the bathtub in my daughters bathroom began to leak into the kitchen.....

The economy being what it is. And my personal economy being what it is, we decided to go the Home Depot/Lowes route with this redo and let me tell you, I have found some really nice things that will look lovely in that new bathroom. I almost got it all at Home Depot one afternoon. After all, I usually feel like those places are all pretty similar. And regarding the things that they stock, they are pretty similar. What was not similar were the prices. Neither one had ALL of the things cheaper than the other-for instance, Home Depot was clearly the winner with vanity's and faucets while Lowes seemed to beat them out with Toilets and Bathtubs. I also got the tile from Lowes. By comparing places and picking and choosing I have saved over $400 between the places. This took me only an additional few hours at Lowes to do some comparison shopping. All told I have probably spent 6 hours figuring out what I need/want.

Of course this tip did not save as much as the "No BUYING OLD BATHROOMS tip" but it's all I've got. You however, have a choice, just NEVER BUY AN OLD BATHROOM. Just don't....

7 comments:

Stephanie Dray said...

I'm going to be paying keen attention to your progress here. Adam and I bought a new townhouse, it's not even ten years old and we have already had two major leaks that required a plumber, and dry-wall repair.

Right now, the shower in our master bathroom must be replaced, as well as the waterdamaged floor. My dad was all "This is easy" so I asked him to come up and look at it, and he was like, "Hmmm. This is going to be tricky."

Adam and I are not handy, so I have no idea how we're going to fix this problem. We're going to have to watch what you and Will do.

Christine said...

Oh I hate to disappoint you on this one but the other thing we are doing is hiring someone to install all of this stuff. We could save a bundle if we could do plumbing and tile work!!!

It's kind of disheartening to think you live in a new home that needs a new shower. Or maybe it's not and will just give me a good excuse to ignore the bathrooms the next time I wan to to buy an even older homer ;-)

Deanna said...

Yeah, what do they say, the first time marry a handy-man and once he's fixed everything, then you can divorce him and marry for love? Or something like that... I married for love, but thankfully my husband has reading skills and he was actually able to replace drywall and tiling in our shower (prior to that when you touched the wall, it moved -- we decided that was a bad thing...) -- I was pretty impressed with that, I must say! I don't think he's up for replacing a floor yet though.

Christine said...

I think they say Marry for Money....

Deanna said...

Oh right -- then you can afford to HIRE a handyman... Well, either way!

4in4 said...

Wow, I thought you were going to install them yourself too! Good job shopping back and forth, I'm not sure I would have had the patience for that. I'll look forward to reading how it goes!

Christine said...

Oh if only we could do these things ourselves! Sorry if I gave that impression! That, of course, adds a lot to the cost of a bathroom redo!

I usually don't have the patience to look all over town for something either but I wanted to compare tile and it was actually time well spent.