It’s great fun moving into a new house and trying to get caught up on all of the repairs; even little ones can take up a lot of time and mental energy. One critical repair was to replace a fence section that was badly warped and pulling loose. My neighbor was making pointed comments about it falling into her yard.
June first seemed like a good day to purchase materials. I knew I wouldn’t have time to fix the fence right away but I needed some pressure-treated lumber, as well. I wanted it to age for a couple of weeks before I painted it. More on that, below.
During the month of May I had been contemplating the pros and cons of getting a pickup truck. Obviously, I needed one now that I was a landowner—should I buy an old beater or a newer, more reliable one? Yet, June had arrived and I still had no method of transporting large objects.
It suddenly occurred to me on that Saturday morning that trucks could be rented for very little money. Duh! A little online research revealed that my local Home Depot rents trucks—time to go shopping.
The Home Depot rental was a bit pricey—and definite overkill. It’s a flatbed with stake sides that fold down in case my load was really oversize. It has a cargo capacity of 3500 pounds – rather more than I would need. Still…the convenience! I could have driven to U-Haul and gotten a light truck for about twenty dollars a day. The Home Depot truck cost nineteen dollars for seventy-five minutes. A full twenty-four hours costs sixty-nine dollars. But 75 minutes would be plenty of time–I live less than two miles from the store. Why rent for a whole day if I didn’t need to?
That afternoon I stopped off at their rental area and placed my name on the waiting list. The trucks are in high demand on Saturday. Then I went to do my shopping.
It’s quite a time savings if you do things the right order. My first stop was in lumber where I tracked down an employee and set them to work cutting up sheets of half-inch plywood to my required sizes. While he was doing that I wandered off and got the rest of my supplies. Then back to lumber to pick up everything else. Time to check out.
While I was in line I got a call on my cell phone—my truck was ready. Did I mention convenient? Not only was the truck parked right next to the contractor loading area, they didn’t start charging until my purchases were actually on board. And there was a Home Depot employee to help me load.
I’m convinced—I don’t need to buy a pickup. Even if I rent a truck every single weekend of the year it’s still cheaper than paying the insurance on old beater. I’m also saving the purchase price. And the cost and headaches of repairs. This experience has gotten me thinking. Maybe I should buy a sports car for my daily driver. I can always rent any other vehicle I might need. Hmm…
Unfortunately, the new fence panel had to sit for two weeks until my twenty-year-old son was free to come over and help me install it. He graciously did the heavy lifting and allowed me to have the fun of playing with the power tools. That was on Saturday, the fifteenth.
The pressure-treated lumber and the plywood got a coat of primer that same weekend. Normally (or so I’ve been told) pressure-treated wood is supposed to age for a while before being painted. The primer that I purchased is supposed to stick to most anything. We’ll see how it does on pressure-treated wood. The lumber will become an aquaponics trough. I’ll get to that in a future post.