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Putting Lipstick on a Pig!

Putting lipstick on a pig
Reading Time: 3 minutes

I’m 52 years old, I’ve been with the company for coming up on 10 years and I don’t understand some people. I should say rather, I don’t understand why some people just do not take care of their homes properly.  

I see this all the time, house is freshly painted on the outside, new car in the driveway, perfectly manicured lawn, newly pressure washed roof then I go inside. Inside the home is more of the same, stunning kitchen with big island and gorgeous back splashes, the home is well decorated, there are even little folded hand towels in the guest bath, and so on; you get the picture I’m sure. This is where the beauty in the house usually ends for me.

I start to look at the nuts and bolts of the home, the inner workings if you will, the air conditioning system, electrical system, duct system, water heater, plumbing systems and this previously beautiful house turns very ugly to the trained eye. Today I just want to give you a few warnings on the dangers of ignoring all the things in your home that you use every single day and then you get surprised when they break or do not function the way they should.

In today’s example house the water heater was 24 years old. Why? Again I don’t get it. They are not that expensive to replace and a failed water heater can cause tens of thousands of dollars in water damage very quickly. How beautiful is that kitchen going to look if it has 4” of water on the floor? Same house, the air conditioner was a combination of an interior unit dating from 1990 and an exterior unit from 2005 both in very poor condition. I explained how much energy they were wasting because of the age of the unit, how it could never keep up in hot summer months etc., etc. all the reasons it should be replaced.  The lady of the house just smiled and nodded. She said my husband is out walking the dogs maybe you can explain these things to him when he is back. I proceed with my inspection of the home only to find that they had had a bit of a rat problem in the attic. The rats had torn some holes in the ducts not to mention the feces and urine damage they had done to the insulation. As I am coming out of the attic the husband and the dogs enter stage right. I spend the next little while walking him around and explaining everything I have discovered in the last thirty minutes, complete with pictures and video.

Here’s where it gets weird. He says “I’m not sure why my wife called you, we trapped all the rats a few months ago, the air conditioner works and so does the hot water heater. I’m not doing anything about any of this.” As we are walking down the driveway a white van pulls up and a kid in his 20’s jumps out. Kid says to client, “I’m here from XYZ painting”. Client says, “Oh you are going to start painting the house today?”  Back to the kid, “No we’ll pressure clean it today and start painting tomorrow.”

Again I don’t get it.

I’m sure you have heard the expression lipstick on a pig before and to me that is exactly what today’s home owner was doing. All right, my rant is over and I feel better. My advice for whatever it is worth is to replace old things before they break you’ll save time, grief, aggravation and most of all money.  Until you can find the time to make your way back here again, thanks for stopping by.

What happened next made me sad. I opened a new box of candy canes just to find out they weren’t in mint condition.

House Whisperer out!!


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