Home Depot and Lowes Can Be My Downfall

Too often, I make the huge mistake of beginning a do-it-yourself project without doing all that much planning. This reality struck home while I was doing a clean-up around my condo and saw all the goodies which I had purchased for some DIY projects, and never started.

I few years ago, I decided to replace all brass door knobs on my interior doors with a more modern looking fixture. I went to one of my favorite hang-outs, Home Depot, and saw some satin chrome lever handles that would be perfect. The only problem was I wasn’t sure how many to buy and simply relying on my memory and mental imagery of the condo, wound up buying four sets too few. I didn’t install any of the units and placed them at the bottom of the closet to be finished at a later date, which hasn’t yet arrived.

The problem now is finding the same units so that each room and door will have the same look. I spent about $200 and will be out that amount unless I can find the same model elsewhere.

I also came across a few lavatory faucets which I bought and never installed. Now, in this case I have the right number but if I want the bathroom sink and shower/tub to match, I will be out of luck. This little fiasco has cost me somewhere between $50 and $100, depending on whether I can use both faucets.

In the closet where much of my future supplies were stored, I came across unopened and unused containers of tile grout, wood putty and packages of caulking strips. At one time, these must have seen like a good idea, but now they are just reminders of silly purchases.

If one of my clients were guilty of this behavior, I would tell them

1) Plan projects and make lists up 2) Don’t think that you are Bob Vila or any of the home fixer-upper gurus 3) Borrow the line from Larry David and “curb your enthusiasm.”

Impulse spending, in my case at least, was not only wasteful, but also added to a cluttered look. After all, it is hard to keep all those neat, but unnecessary purchases out of sight. I will add “Never go to the hardware store without a list” to my 2012 resolutions!

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