When is wasting money actually a good use of cash? I’ve been wondering about this recently, as baby fever hits the Skint house and suddenly it dawns that the long list of chores won’t get done on time without some help. So, against the usual Skint ethos, I’ve given in and hired outside help for jobs that could certainly be done ourselves.
I like to think I can paint furniture, assemble flatpacks and varnish doors with the best of them, but with the clock ticking and the to-do list growing rather than shrinking, I got in one of those so-much-still-to-do panics that anyone with a kicking timebomb inside them will recognise. The only answer? Start enlisting outside help to get jobs finished on time. And though it meant spending a bit of cash that was technically unnecessary, I don’t grudge a penny. Here’s how it went:
Hiring someone to assemble a flatpack wardrobe, shelving unit and put up a curtain pole – £48. In theory we could have done these jobs ourselves, but you know when the curtain pole was bought? Four years ago. Uh-huh. (* Hangs heads in shame* ) Time to concede defeat on that one – it took the chap half an hour to do.
Hiring company to clean a bedroom and stair carpet – £75. Technically I could have hired a carpet cleaning machine from the supermarket and cleaned all the carpets in the house. That was my first plan, but when I went along and watched the little sales video of how ‘simple’ the machine was to operate I could tell it was a disaster waiting to happen. The way the woman pulled the machine with ease from room to room? I felt the thing – and it must have weighed the same as me. I used my strength to flick through the Yellow Pages instead.
Getting a painter in to paint the baby’s bedroom – cost £100. The room just needed a freshen up really: walls, ceiling and woodwork, not hard at all. But with the clock ticking and so many other things to do – stuff that could really only be done by us – I took the easy route again.
So, that’s about £220 gone on jobs that would normally come under DIY. Were they a waste of money? Or a smart use of cash when facing a major deadline? Though the opposite of what I’d normally do, in these circumstances I think that splashing the cash was worth it as it stopped me from feeling totally overwhelmed. I can’t hire anyone to give birth for me, (if you know different, please let me know, quick-sharp . . .) but at least getting some outstanding jobs ticked off makes me feel more in control.
What do you guys think? Got any examples to share of times when wasting money was absolutely the right thing to do? I’d love to know.