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No A/C Diary: Day 8

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We’re now starting Day #8 of having no A/C.

This is in Tucson. Our temperatures the past couple days have been in the one-hundred-teens. It was literally over 100 degrees even at 10:00pm last night. It’s been in the 120’s in our upstairs. To say “hot” is the understatement of the century.

Back Story

Let’s back up a bit. Our A/C went out last Wednesday night/Thursday morning. We’ve had 3 separate repair companies out to inspect it. We initially considered filing a home-owner’s insurance claim to help repair our A/C when we thought the damage was due to a lightening strike (which is covered under home owner’s insurance). But after 2 more companies came out to inspect, both thought the damage was more likely due to flood-related issues. Flood-related damage is not covered by our home-owner’s insurance. We do not have a home warranty. We’re on our own to pay for the issue.

Warranty

The good news is we’ll be receiving close to $4,000 in parts for free since they’re covered under warranty (the unit is only 3 years old!). The not-so-great news is we have to wait for the parts to come direct from the manufacturer and we were told it was a 2-week wait. We paid $150 to rush order the parts so they would be here in 5 business days. That would have put the parts here yesterday, folks.

Day 8 and still no A/C…

The company we ended up going with was recommended by a friend. They have good reviews online. They’re a family-owned small business (love supporting small business!) All seemed good at first. But I started getting nervous early this week. Hubs called for a status update on Monday, left a message, and received no return call. He called again Tuesday, left another message, and received no return call. By Wednesday I’m freaking out. The parts were supposed to arrive Wednesday. They’re supposed to be installed today. We’re supposed to have working A/C again tonight!!! Hubs called 3 times yesterday. No pick-up, no return call. Finally about 4:45pm I decided to take matters into my own hands. I called from work (a different phone number), and lo and behold – they answer.

What followed next was an INCREDIBLY frustrating conversation that left me literally shaking I was so angry. Long story short, it became blatantly clear we were receiving the run-around. There were several inconsistencies, misrepresentations, and just plain contradictions in story between what we were told last Thursday/Friday and yesterday when the part was supposed to arrive. Getting off the phone, I was told by the owner, “I’ll let you know in the morning if the part has even been shipped yet.”

….

IF THE PART HAS EVEN BEEN SHIPPED YET???

It could be another 5-7 days. Another WEEK with no A/C.

Surviving the Heat

We did a staycation for 2 days at a local hotel over the weekend. It was a welcome (albeit temporary) relief from the heat. When we came back, we went and bought two window A/C units (thanks to recommendations from readers – thank you!). We have one in our downstairs living room. We hung sheets to enclose the square footage and make it a smaller place. The other is in the master bedroom upstairs. We keep all the doors closed. The window units have made the place survivable, but it’s far from ideal. I’ve broken out in an itchy heat rash all over my legs. Even with the units running constantly, the best they can do is cooling the enclosed areas to 84 degrees. Still pretty toasty (During summer I keep the thermostat at 78, for comparison).

The second you have to leave the cooled area (going to the bathroom, kitchen, dining room, etc.) it’s literally in the 120’s. Going into the bathroom it feels like walking into a dry sauna. The floor feels heated. I’m sweating constantly. It almost makes your chest feel heavy, like you’re being suffocated. It’s just miserable. To those who recommended buying “standing fan”??? I appreciate the comment, but it’s just so clear you’ve never experienced heat like this before. We do have a couple fans to help in addition to the window units. But I just can’t even convey through a computer screen the level of heat we’re dealing with here. It’s awful.

Starting Over

I don’t want to throw this local business under the bus, but I am BEYOND DISAPPOINTED in our interaction with the A/C repair company we chose. The plan for today is to call every single repair place listed on the A/C manufacturer’s website until we find someone who can do it sooner than we’ve been told by the current company. Luckily, we haven’t signed any contracts and we didn’t pay any money up front so we aren’t obligated to stay with them. I just can’t even believe that we’re at this point. A full WEEK without A/C and no closer to getting it fixed today than we were an entire week ago. In fact, we’re starting all over from scratch. Calling all the places, gathering all the info, etc. Meanwhile, work is piling up (this has taken a lot of time, obviously). The bathrooms are becoming disgusting messes (try cleaning a 120 degree bathroom. Kudos if you can get it done, but I just cannot). Doing laundry feels like entering the 8th circle of Hell from Dante’s Inferno. It’s hard to do ANYTHING when you’re just dripping sweat, itching your heat rash, and trying not to die of heat stroke. Dramatic much? Yes. But is it my real, true feelings? Also yes. It’s horrible.

Healthy Coping

I went to Happy Hour with a friend last night. I enjoyed a giant $6 margarita and some much needed friend-therapy. I have a lunch-hour yoga planned for today on campus (a free event). I’m crossing my fingers and hoping for the best and praying we can get this thing fixed SOONER than another week.

iPhone X Purchased: Birthday Money and Savings All Spent

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He bought the iPhone X. Despite all the advice and all the time to consider his options, he chose what he wanted. And he paid every penny of the purchase.

This is a follow up post to this one. My recently turned 13 year old son has been BEGGING for the iPhone X since it was announced last summer. I mean, he has not let it go. And has asked everyone for a contribution. (And everyone told him NO!)

gymnast with his iPhone X

Gymnast is thrilled with his purchase of an Apple iPhone X and case. He wanted the focus to be on his prize!

Wait 30 Days

According to several personal finance experts, they say to hold off on big purchases for at least 30 days. He was forced to hold on to this dream for over a year.

They also say to pay cash. He had to do this as he had no other option.

And of course, it is always advised that you watch for deals. He was able to get the $1,000 phone for $549 + tax through my business account with Verizon.

All in all, without knowing it, he followed all the expert advice on making such a large purchase.

Not What Anyone Advised

Gymnast has heard feeback from alot of people on this purchase.

  • No way, no one, let alone a teenager needs a $1,000 phone.
  • It’s just a phone. It will just call and text like any other phone.
  • Think of all the other things you could do with that money.
  • What if you break this one too? Since you have broken every other electronic ever.
  • And so on and so forth.

Despite it all, he’s held true to his dream. And he’s worked hard to earn the money. And saved all his birthday money. (He asked for money toward a phone purchase for his 13th birthday.)

To be honest, I don’t know many adults that hold off on dreams that long. Typically by the time it comes around, they have moved on.

Sad but Proud

First, off I am very proud of his diligence and “stick with it-ness.” He’s stood up to just about everyone we know to pursue what he wants. Although, I don’t agree with it in this case, I can’t help but be proud of this characteristic. Standing up for what you believe can be hard, especially when everyone tells you that you are wrong.

While I won’t say he sacrificed a great deal because the bulk of the money came from his birthday. He did work VERY hard for half of it. And he made a wise decision is purchasing a good case first, then the phone.

He spent the month of July in Texas with my parents, and worked in the Texas heat trimming bushes, cutting lawns, painting dressers and more to earn money toward the phone. All this without knowing how much he was earning.

He even earned enough to purchase the back to school clothes he wanted. And while he may be broke now, he is all set for school and is still starry eyed at the phone in his hand.

I know many will disagree with me allowing my son to spend over $630 (phone, tax and case) on a WANT and not a need. But I believe he is old enough to make these decisions with his own money. And I also believe he is old enough to learn important lessons from whatever happens next. For instance, he has no spending money now with two weeks left of summer. He already has other things he wants and he will have to wait. And so on.

If something happens to the phone, well, he will learn from that too. But for right now, in this moment, my teenage son who has suffered a great deal of loss over the last few years is very proud of himself and very happy with his purchase. And that warms this mama’s heart.