Humor · Marriage · poll

Hot and Cold

My husband and I are fighting. Well…we’re having a conversation. A calm and yet pissy conversation that might sometimes get heated, but then we laugh, so, not a fight. It’s a good debate for us to have since we are essentially polar opposites. The question is, what is more important, cost or customer service?

Our furnace was put in in 1980, so it’s had a good run. And our Central Air Unit is, as the repair man put it, obsolete. Also, we need heat and air put into our den, which was previously a sun room. All this is gonna cost a pretty penny…and few ugly nickles, I’m afraid.

Our grumpy old units, Lennox and Trane.
Our grumpy old units, Lennox and Trane.

So, we had a man come in to give us an estimate. He came out on a Saturday when my husband would be home. He inspected the house, taking measurements and counting windows. He spoke to both of us, not just my husband. He joked around with our kids. He told me he’d have an estimate for us in 3 days. In 3 days he came back, sat down with both my husband and me and went through all our options very carefully.  He patiently answered all our questions, laughed at all my ridiculous jokes, and then said he’d wait for our call.

My husband saw the dollar signs and called a second guy.

Hvac-guy #2 was referred to us by my husband’s parents, so, people we  trust. He was set to come on a Friday afternoon. My husband had to leave work an hour early because this particular company, or this particular employee, does not work after 4:30. I was annoyed because that was the time I had to take all three kids to the doctor, which is the worst possible activity in the world short of having your fingers bitten off by tiny lizards. But if that’s the only time they could do it, so be it. I would take the kids to the doctor, alone, and Steven would walk through everything with the repair guy.

At 3:00 my husband texts that they called and cancelled. The guys dog died, and apparently there was no one else in the company that could come. They rescheduled for Monday at 4:30. So now, I not only have to take the kids to the doctor by myself, but my husband would have to work through two lunch breaks so he could take off early another day.

Monday comes, and the guy is late. I should mention, the first guy was also late, but he at least called to let us know. This guy shows up, doesn’t apologize, doesn’t acknowledge me or the kids. Takes about three seconds to look at the furnace. Checks out where we need the duct work, and starts to leave. While my husband, a super-perfectionist, is trying to tell him what we have in mind, the man is talking over him, “yeah yeah yeah, sure sure sure.” It’s very annoying. He says he’ll have a quote for us in a few days. The quote comes via email. It does not include the cost for duct work for the den. He will email that to us in a few days, he says. A week later, my husband emails back asking for the cost with duct work since we haven’t heard from him yet. 2 days later, we get it.

It’s $3000 less than the first guy.

So, as you’ve probably guessed, I say, “First guy was polite, attentive, answered our questions and then some. The second guy was rude, late, and seems like he’s just gonna do what he’s done in every other house he’s worked on before and not care what we say. I vote #1”

My husband looks at me like I’ve just suggested we eat spit and keys for dinner and says, “THREE-THOUSAND FUCKING DOLLARS!”

I think what we’re gonna need to do is call a third person. Maybe third time is the charm and this person will not be so expensive and not be a total douche-bag. At least we can hope.

But, I’m curious, what does everyone else think? Does good customer service account for anything anymore? Do you get what you pay for? Or does the all-mighty buck rule the world?

I’ll let you know how this all goes down, but until then, vote! And yes, I will be using this information against my husband, so vote correctly. 😉


Thanks for stopping by!


13 thoughts on “Hot and Cold

  1. I swear that I must have been reading an argument between my husband and myself. Rude and cheap don’t always go well together. I used to be in the beauty industry and my clients would mention to me how much cheaper the “asian’ places were…I just looked at them and asked…”Do you want to have polite conversation or do you want to be talked about without your knowledge?” Needless to say they kept coming back and paying a little bit more. I mean let’s face it, I am still cheaper then a psychiatrist to listen to your problems. ;D

  2. I’d probably call the first guy back and tell him that you really, really want to use him – but that the other quote was $3000 lower. See if he has any room to adjust his pricing. He might be willing to cut his figure down to a closer match. Good luck! This is one of those “discussions” my hubby and I would have too.

  3. I would worry a lot that the second guy’s attitude and performance reflects his company’s equipment, installation and service thereafter. I like the comments above that suggest being honest with the human being guy No. 1 and say you received a quote that’s really a lot less expensive, asking him is his company can do anything to compete. If his squad wants your business, who knows? Or call in estimate three and play that hand in the game, too. But that’s more of your time, effort and worry. These big purchases are such a rigormorol. But it’s not a one-shot deal with major appliances. It’s a 30-year relationship.

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