Thursday, June 8, 2017

Prejudices About Wealthy People

There seems to be an assumption in some circles that wealthy means stupid.  Often, when we ask someone up to the house to bid on a project; the estimates show it.  An asphalt guy came up to quote a price for resurfacing a 20' x20' piece of asphalt in front of the telescope garage: $3500.

Now several years ago, an asphalt contractor had a job cancellation that left him with a large load of asphalt that was going to congeal, a work crew already hired for the day.  He did a vastly larger area for $3700; probably about his cost.  When I told Mr. $3500, the price dropped to $1000.  I have largely done the same repair (although not to the same quality of appearance) for less than $100 of Latex-ite Ultrashield and about three hours of my labor.

Wealthy means either stupid or absurdly generous, in some eyes.  It doesn't even have to be wealthy, except in relative terms.  Our first house, during a 1 1/2 year sentence to San Jose, needed a fence.  We asked for bids.  The first, by what must have been (at that time) the only swishy fence contractor in San Jose.  Bid: $4000 for a fence that ended up costing us about $400.  This was not a big or fancy house; it was less than 900 square feet, and starter home appearance and quality.

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