To Buy Or Not To Buy: Should You Rent Equipment For Your Big Projects?

From the smallest of home renovation projects to big new build constructions, you find yourself faced with one particular problem.

Well, okay, you find yourself faced with many problems. You find yourself waking up in the morning to a light layer of dust over everything, and wondering why you ever began this project. You find yourself visiting friends, staring at their walls – without holes in them! – and daydreaming of living in such a place. We all reach a point where the downsides seem to be so substantial, there’s no possible…

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[Photo courtesy of Samson1north/wikipedia.org]

… Hang on; that wasn’t the point I was trying to make. Okay. Let’s refocus. No more whining; we all know the benefits of home-style construction and why it’s worth it. We live with our choices and embrace them – even if they can be a little problematic at times!

The issue I was originally referring to was much more simplistic. No matter the scope of your project, you’ve probably encountered it: should you buy or rent expensive machinery?

[Photo courtesy of Mark Schellhase/wikipedia.org]

This applies to everything, from a humble power washer when sprucing up your home’s exterior – right through to an excavator for a garden project. Hiring can seem the easiest answer, but it can also be prohibitively expensive. The choice is usually an individual one, but if you’re struggling to make a decision, here’s a few pros and cons on the hiring/buying debate. I’ll take it from the perspective of buying for yourself, for the sake of clarity.

PRO: It’s yours.

The most obvious one, but an important aspect to consider. If you do something to a piece of machinery you have rented – an accident, or misuse that results in a breakdown – you could be in for a massive bill. With your own machine, any potential mistakes that you make are your own. It will be cheaper to repair an item than to compensate a hire company for any damage that results from your use of it. Then when it is repaired, you can still use it free of charge when you own it.

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CON: You’re responsible for repair and maintenance.

Even if you decide the initial purchase price is cheaper than renting on a cost-per-use level, that’s not the end of the road. With renting, if a piece of machinery breaks down, it’s not your problem. You can hand it back to be fixed, providing you’re not the one who broke it.

If you own it, however, any breakdowns are going to be yours to deal with. Factor this in when you look at the purchase price.

As an example, let’s say you want to hire a mini digger for a big garden project. Rental is going to cost you $200 per day. You anticipate you’re going to need it for around seven days. The cost to buy your own is $1000 – a saving of $400. Seems an easy choice, until you factor in potential repair costs in future.

There are ways and means of lowering the cost. Performing routine servicing will keep an item running as it should. Replacing parts from a reputable retailer such as Woods equipment and the like can also insure against future issues. There should also be a warranty that means any issue not of your fault will bounce back to the manufacturer. But it’s still worth keeping in mind.

PRO: You can expand future projects thanks to it.

Staying with the example of the mini digger, you might have planned to use it for one particular project. That means it’s going to be surplus to requirements for anything else, right? So hiring might be more expensive, but at least you don’t then have to store a digger you have no other use for it.

You will probably find that you do find a use for it. The scope of your existing projects can change and expand because you now have a piece of machinery that makes more innovative ideas possible.

CON: You run the risk of not being able to take it back.

If you hire something, you always have the option of returning it if it’s not a good fit. You might choose something that isn’t up to the task at hand; or even an item you just don’t feel comfortable using.

When you buy, you’re stuck with it – within reason. All the usual buying laws apply to you, but you have to be careful to read the small print to ensure you can return an item. Some sales policies – especially for larger machinery – may only allow you to return an item for store credit, partial refunds or not at all if the item has been used. Be aware of your rights in case something doesn’t work as you hoped.

PRO: You can hire it out to friends and family.

One way of keeping a piece of machinery running is to make a little money off it. There’s nothing stopping you from hiring it out to your nearest and dearest for a small fee to help contribute to maintenance.

CON: You might not use it.

Cement Mixer

[Photo courtesy of Peter Griffin/publicdomainpictures.net]

There is always the risk that you will buy something, planning many future projects… and then never feel the need to touch it. If buying is cheaper than renting, then this still might be worth it – it all depends on the storage space you have available.

For smaller items like pressure washers and wallpaper strippers, you probably have a corner of your attic that you can use. For large machinery, then it might be a little trickier to give over space for something from which you’re not getting much use.

PRO: You can always sell it.

However, if the above happens, you always have the option of selling an item on. Returning to the mini digger: you saved $400 when you bought it, paying $1000. If you then sell it on, even for a small amount like $200, your saving goes to $600. Providing you get a good deal on the purchase price, this is definitely something to keep in mind.

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Reasons You Think You Can’t Change Your Home Decor and Design – And Why You’re Wrong

Coming around to the decision to give your home a makeover is an easy one.

Of course, the reasons in the pro column are long and substantial. Who doesn’t want their home to look better? Give everything a refresh; change things around so that it all feels like new again? Perhaps your eye has been caught by a new decorating trend, and you can’t wait to try it out for yourself. Or perhaps you’re just the kind of person who tends to need a project.

You find yourself imagining the changed decor; the fresh paint; the new levels of comfort that you can explore. Then, with a screech of brakes, your mind remembers all the reasons you shouldn’t do it.

Sometimes, though, you just have to seize the moment and go for it. If there’s something you want to change about your home, then it’s time to banish the concerns to one side. I’m going to go through all of the usual objections and show why they’re not anything that should stand in your way. Just call me your home decor and renovation enabler!

“I can’t afford it.”

Fall, Hurricane, Money, Finance, Currency, Crisis

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Of course, this one is pretty difficult to argue on the surface of it. If you don’t have the money, then what can you do? You can’t magic it up from thin air and progress on developing a money tree is still limited, so you’ll just have to wait until you can afford it.

The best option in this scenario is to look at a way to change something up without breaking the bank. Rather than a full-scale kitchen remodel, for example, why not go for a facelift? You could change the cupboard doors rather than fitting entirely new cupboards.

The same philosophy applies throughout the house. Craving a new bed to snuggle down into? Maybe that’s outside the budget, but memory foam mattress toppers can give a boost of comfort without the same price tag. Does the carpet really need replacing, or will a deep clean and brush be enough to bring it back up to standard?

“I don’t have the time.”

Clock, Time, Stand By

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Realistically, you probably don’t have the time for most things you do. We get it; life is busy, it’s stressful, and you’re struggling to do the basics. Why should you make your workload easier?

Because you don’t have the time! It’s that simple; the same thing arguing against the scenario is the thing that makes it a necessity. Unless you have a huge chunk of holiday time coming up that you know you can dedicate to DIY, where is it going to come from? You’re going to have to fit it in somewhere. There’s no time like the present, or so the old saying goes.

Putting something off to some fantastical period when you’re going to magically have “more time” isn’t going to work. You can break it down into chunks. Do a little as often as you possibly can to make it less draining.

“It’s a lot of disruption.”

Yes, of course, it is. You have to shop, make decisions, then implement them. Depending on the scale of your project, that might involve a builder being involved or transferring items into new furniture. It will be disruptive – but it’s always going to be. It’s the same as the point about time. Unless you can foresee sometime in the future when you will be able to do these things unencumbered, there’s no point holding back.

“It’s a lot of mess.”

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[Photo courtesy of geralt/pixabay.com]

Even the most basic things do cause a mess, but so does life. I’m going to imagine your house tends to require cleaning anyway. So, given the potential end result, what’s the harm in a little extra?

“It’s not a good time.”

There’s a chance this is a legitimate concern and I don’t discount that. If you’re particularly busy, going through a stressful situation or have health concerns – you’re right. It’s probably not a good time and you should wait until it’s more something you can cope with. There’s also seasonal considerations; it’s little use deciding to renovate the garden in winter, for example.

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[Photo courtesy of Unsplash/pixabay.com]

Only you can know if the problem is just where you’re at in your life – you know if this is a genuine reason or not. Often, this argument might be masking a concern about one of the above, so check your thinking to see if that’s the case. If it is, then see if there’s something you can do about progress. If not, and it really is a bad time, consider yourself un-enabled for now!

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Important Questions That Every New Homeowner Needs To Ask

Have you just bought your first house? Congratulations! Buying your very first home is a very exciting life milestone indeed! However, it isn’t all fun and games as it also comes with a lot of responsibility. Most new homeowners are completely new at owning their very own property. And they aren’t exactly sure about what goes into running a household. That’s why it is important that you try and fill some of the gaps in your knowledge as quickly as possible. And the best way to do that is to ask a lot of questions. Here are the best ones for you to ask.

Apartments, Architecture, Balconies, Building, Facade

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Where Is The Water Shutoff Valve?

It is incredibly important that you know where the water shutoff valve is in your home. Knowing where this valve is can help you prevent a huge disaster. For example, if a plumbing job goes wrong or a pipe bursts, you may end up with a lot of water damage in your home. And this can be very expensive to repair. However, if you know where the shutoff valve is, you will be able to greatly reduce the amount of damage. So once you have agreed on the house sale, make sure that you ask where this very useful valve is!

Faucet, Valve, Gold, Hot Water Connection, Nostalgia

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Is The House Equipped With Security?

Sometimes, properties are sold with all their security system still in place. If the previous homeowner had installed a burglar alarm system, they will probably leave this in place for you. There could be other safety and security features in place. So be sure to ask the previous homeowners about everything that is in place. Don’t think your new home is going to come with adequate security systems and equipment? No problem; it will be easy for you to get some installed. You could get a security firm in to install everything for you. However, many homeowners are now turning to DIY installations. You can learn about diy home security systems online.

Cctv, Security, Camera, Privacy, Security Camera

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Can You Cut Down Trees In The Garden

Trees can be a godsend in many gardens as they encourage a wide variety of wildlife and birds to visit. They are also good from an environmental point of view because they release a lot of oxygen into the atmosphere. However, there are a few downsides to having large trees in your garden. Firstly, if they grow too big, they could end up getting dangerously close to overhead power cables. Their roots can also grow quite far under the ground and could end up damaging piping and underground electrical cables. Not only that, though, but tall trees can block sunlight from getting into your home. And this could make your rooms feel fairly dark and dingy. So can you cut down the trees in your garden? You will first need to check with your locality to find out. Most localities require people to get a permit before they cut down any trees. Once they agree to it, it is often safer to hire a tree surgeon who can do the job safely for you.

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Is It Safe To Drill Into Walls?

When many people move into their home, they are incredibly excited to start decorating and put their personal stamp on the place. Most people want to hang pictures on their walls and mount wall hangings. To do this, you will normally need to drill into the walls so that you can put a nail or screw into the wall. However, do you know if you can drill into the walls? It all depends on what is in the walls. If there are lots of cables in there, it could be too dangerous to put anything on the wall. You could end up damaging the cabling, and you may even risk electrocuting yourself. Generally speaking, if you drill no more than an inch into the wall, you won’t have to worry about hitting these cables. You should make sure that you never drill above or below any wall sockets or light switches. There will be a lot of cables in these areas.

Taps, Drill, Milling, Milling Machine, Drilling, Tool

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Can I Deal With A Blocked Drain Or Toilet Myself?

Most of the time, yes! In fact, blocked drains are fairly easy to fix. One of the first things you should do is to pour some bleach down the drain followed by a kettle full of boiling water. This should dissolve and dislodged most substances that could be blocking the drain. If this doesn’t quite get rid of the clog, you could use a plunger to try and physically remove the block. You can also use this method to unclog your toilet. If things don’t seem to get any better, you may have to consider calling a plumber to come and fix things for you.

What’s 811 for?

Everyone knows about 911. But do you know about 811 as well? If you have bought a home with a large garden and plan on some big garden projects, you may need to know all about this three-digit phone number. It is important that you call 811 before you begin any outdoor projects that require a lot of digging. Each area has their very own 811 center staffed with people who know exactly what will be under the ground you plan to dig. If you let them know the exact area which you want to dig up, they will be able to tell you whether there are any possible dangers or obstructions. These could include water pipes or underwater springs.

Pokes Fun At, Sand, Blade, Digging, Work, Wheelbarrow

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Do I Need To Keep All The Receipts Of Home Improvements?

This isn’t an absolute must, but it could come in very useful if you ever decide to sell your home. That’s because you can use the receipt of each piece of work you have had done to show just how much your home has increased in value. That’s not the only advantage. It could also help to decrease your taxable income if you are a freelancer or self-employed.

All the answers to these questions should help you run a household smoothly!

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4 Common Problems with Hot Water Heaters

Is your hot water heater giving you problems? If you’re besieged by leaks, odors or operational issues, here are just four common HVAC problems that might be behind your misery.

No Hot Water

Don’t struggle through an ice-cold shower! If you aren’t getting any hot water from your heater, check the pilot light and make sure it hasn’t been blown out by an icy draft. You can also try tightening the gas thermocouple.

Not Enough Hot Water

If you have some hot water but not nearly enough for your needs, you might want to monitor your water consumption. If your heating unit is too small for your family’s daily demands, the hot water could simply be running out.

Bathroom, Sink, Faucet, Tap, Water, Backsplash, Tiles

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Strange-Colored Water

This is a serious problem that should be examined by companies in HVAC or furnace repair Calgary. It means that something is rusting or corroding inside your unit, and it probably needs to be replaced entirely.

Bad Smells

Bad smells coming from your water heater can be blamed on bacteria forming in its interior. This is another issue that should be looked at by the professionals; you’ll need an expert evaluation to determine whether the unit can be salvaged.

These are just four common problems experienced by homeowners throughout Canada. Hot water heating Calgary can be genuinely life-saving during a harsh winter, so don’t take chances with your unit. If you suspect a problem, do something about it.

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