If you read my last post, you’ll know that I’m facing a hefty bill to get the water line from the street to my house fixed this week. Yesterday, I was feeling more upbeat about the situation, and figuring out how I could scrounge some extra money out of Prosper (about $600), and a reimbursement check I’m expecting from work ($450), plus about $100 from Google Adsense since I finally qualify for my first payout (yay!).

But then I decided to switch plumbing companies, since the plumber I had originally wanted suddenly had time in his schedule for me when he heard I was going with a different company. After talking to my arborist, I decided we should take a more circuitous route with the pipes to avoid cutting tree roots close to the trunk. I felt like I trusted this other guy to avoid as much damage as possible to my tree, plus he quoted me a price a bit lower than the original company did for the extended route. So, my new price is $2,400 for the longer route. I was okay with that price, and felt confident that the tree was going to be as safe as possible.

But then the first plumbing company came back to me asking for $300 to cover the permit they had already gotten from the city (apparently $200 for the permit, and $100 for the labor to get the permit.) So now my total cost for this thing is going to be $2,700.

So just like that, the few hundreds of dollars that I had “found” from sources other than my emergency fund are quickly wiped out by this new turn of events.

And of course, I’ve learned some lessons, such as if I want to comparison shop, I shouldn’t give the first company the go-ahead right away. Also, a lot of people seem to think I should “put my foot down” and refuse to pay the first company anything, but I just can’t do that, because they did spend time and money on the permit, and they did agree to do the job on very short notice - which is why they pulled the permit so quickly. I realize that there are people out there who would just say no, they’re not paying, and the company probably would take the hit without pursuing action, but… sigh.  Can’t do it.

But, I’m cooking up some black beans right now… I plan to make this my lowest grocery-spending month ever! (Well, since I started keeping track that is…)