Friday, December 19, 2008

My momma told me... You better shop around...

You better shop around... Boy did I ever learn that this week. Our air conditioner has been slowly dying for the past few months. Our regular a/c guy, Mr. Lambert, of Lambert Air Conditioning of Houston gave us the awful news that our a/c had to be replaced both inside and out. I nearly fainted when he told us how much it would be. We wanted to avoid paying for this on credit, so we had to save up for it. We sweated out the last few months until we had enough to pay for it.

Being a smart shopper, we asked for referrals from our homeschooling group. We got several good recommendations and proceeded to get estimates. The first estimate was $1,798 more than Mr. Lambert had told us. The second estimate was $1,571 more. All these system were exactly the same system, installation, parts and warranty.

It was kind of shocking. I can’t imagine what the extra $$$ was for. A nice Christmas bonus... a new diamond ring... Needless to say, we are going with Lambert Air Conditioning and Heating. We have used this family owned business for many years and have always been pleased. We were shocked at the discrepancies in price.

This was an eye opening experience and just confirmed my resolution to shop around before I purchase high dollar items.


Shannon said...

Good info! We are without heat in one half of our house, have been since we moved in nearly 2 years ago; but I refuse to accumulate any more debt. It amazing how much more willing we are to shop around when we are paying with cash. Glad to hear you got your A/C back. I can freeze a few weeks out of the year, but I can't imagine going without A/C during Houston's summers.

Frazzled Mom said...

Shannon - Good for you for avoiding getting into debt! I bet you have some really creative ways to keep warm! LOL Do you have two heating/cooling units for your house? Is that why one half is not heated? I would highly recommend calling Mr. Lambert when you are ready to get your heater fixed/replaced. It might not be as bad as you are thinking.

Well our a/c has been "dying" but we were able to get some cooling at night because the system could use what little freon it had left to cool the house at night when the temps. weren't so high. We cooled the house down at night and kept all the blinds closed during the day to keep it as cool as possible. We've been doing this since September. Our ceiling fans really saved us. I would not have survived in pioneer days here in the Houston area.


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