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Just when I thought Murphy was gone on an extended vacation, he comes back to visit me. I received a call from my tenant stating the sink is leaking underneath. I was hoping it was only a minor repair and that maybe a washer had gone bad in the faucet. If I only needed to replace a faucet, I would be out of pocket for less than $100.

I had my handyman take a look at it and it was a little worse than I thought. Looks like not only will the faucet need to be replaced, the sink basin will also need to be replaced. The old sink can't be used since the holes that were bored for that sink have rotted and there is no material for the fasteners underneath to hold on to.

I received a quote to repair the sink for around $800 which includes the labor and materials needed to complete the repair. This quote was from the handyman I've used for a couple of years and I'm pretty sure I can trust him. He does all the work on my rental property and he's also done some work for me at my primary home (tiling my kitchen and crown molding). I usually glance at the estimate he gives me and either say ok or if I feel the labor costs are out of line, we discuss it a little further. I don't know what he was thinking on this one because he went with the highest quality sink and faucet. Of the total $800 estimate, materials consisted of $600. I knew the materials costs were out of line for a sink and faucet so I headed down to the home repair store. After I finished shopping for the materials, I was able to trim the total cost of the repair down to less than $500 while still using quality materials.

It's funny about the timing. I just finished fully funding my rental property savings account thanks to an additional paycheck this month. It's like Murphy was peeking into my bank account. Just like the last repair I had to do for the rental property, it was a minor inconvenience and not the end of the world. Thanks to me saving money in a separate account for times like this, I didn't have to sweat the repair and wonder where I would find the money.

If you don't have an Emergency Fund, START TODAY! (Hint: ING Direct is a great place to start a savings account). Murphy is always lurking around the corner just waiting to cause you a little financial stress. Be prepared and you can tell Murphy to go pound salt.


  1. Ryan @ Smarter Wealth // July 21, 2008 at 7:36 AM  

    Sounds like a lot of work. Would you still recommend property investment as a great option? Or would you recommend something else?

  2. MoneyBlogga // July 21, 2008 at 11:36 AM  

    Property investment is the gift that just keeps on ..... giving. Giving you headaches, bad tenants, good tenants that go bad, repair lists ad nauseum. It can also give you a good income if you do it right. I'm one of those annoying people who will listen intently to others' advice and then not follow a word of it. I have to learn from actually making the mistake which can be a very expensive mistake when talking about purchasing rental property.

  3. SingleGuyMoney // July 21, 2008 at 5:59 PM  

    @Ryan: I got pretty lucky when I became a landlord. I got a good paying tenant who's been with me for over 2 years. I would probably do it again.

  4. budgets are sexy // July 22, 2008 at 8:16 PM  

    isn't that funny how that happens? the mins things are going smoothly and POW - you get hit w/ something out of the blue.

    A kinda-sorta-not-really-similar thing happened to us last week - a pipe in our basement got backed up and water decided to swim around a bit :( While it def. sucked, i learned a LOT and got away with fixing it myself for a good $100 and 6 hours of time! (woohoo)

    Anyways, i hope it all works out well my man!