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What upgrade for 2014?


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13 replies to this topic

#1 of 14 OFFLINE   DaveF

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Posted January 13 2014 - 04:32 PM

I've got a number of big-ticket upgrade options for 2014. I need to start reducing the list and pick the one (maybe two) that I'm going to do. What do you think, what would you pick?

* Deck / patio
* Basement HT
* New car
* Dining Room table & chairs
* Big vacation

#2 of 14 OFFLINE   Stan

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Posted January 13 2014 - 05:03 PM

I'd go with Deck/Patio or Dining room set.
 

The others all become outdated, sometimes literally the next day. A vacation? What do you get, a few memories, some pictures and maybe some tourist trinkets.

 

Go for the more permanent items.

 


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#3 of 14 OFFLINE   schan1269

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Posted January 13 2014 - 06:04 PM

Depends what you call a big vacation...

Driving the Trans-Canada
Alaskan-Siberia cruise
Driving tour of Scandinavia

#4 of 14 OFFLINE   DaveF

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Posted January 13 2014 - 08:39 PM

A driving tour no longer qualifies as vacation for me :) driving is a chore I have to do to get to vacation. But Alaska cruise would be great. Maybe a trip to Hawaii or Overseas. We're doing Disney World this year, but parents are paying for most of it.
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#5 of 14 OFFLINE   schan1269

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Posted January 13 2014 - 08:54 PM

I have a British 2 seater. 69 Sprite.

I actually plan to have it ready this summer to drive to the UP to go to Isle Royale this summer.

The car is drivable already. 50 miles jaunts from home are one thing. Lap around lake Michigan is another.

That is a vacation.

#6 of 14 OFFLINE   Patrick_S

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Posted January 13 2014 - 10:55 PM

There is just no way to give you good advice without more information. It really all depends on what you would give you the most enjoyment.

 

From the list, is your current car dependable or is it having issues? If it is not reliable then it would be the thing I would upgrade. If it is running fine and you just want a fancier one, then I would move to another item. Of course this advice is coming from a person that views a car as nothing more than a tool. If you are a car person that gets a lot of enjoyment out of having a really nice ride than it would be a good upgrade for you.

 

 

Deck/Patio, can’t go wrong and it will add a little value to your home.

 

The home theater, I just read that it is one of the worst upgrades in terms of adding value to your home. Of course if I had a basement I would have a home theater. It will give you years of entertainment.

 

Dining Room table and chairs, do you currently have one? Does it do the job? If you really need one then buy one but considering how rarely people actually use their Dining Room it is a poor value. Of course if you entertain a lot during the year perhaps it is a good value for you. I would advise you to buy a used set. There are some great values to be had via consignment stores or even fire sales from couples that are getting divorced.

 

Big Vacation. I disagree with Stan’s opinion on vacations. If you have always wanted to go overseas on a vacation then I say do it. It will give you a better perspective about the world we live in and the memories will last a lifetime. You do not want to be the person that always puts off doing something you really want to do and then dies before you can do it.  Sounds grim I know but I had a good friend from University that really wanted to go to Europe but always put it off even though he could afford it. Sadly he became ill with cancer and within two months he died. He was a young man with means; he should have lived a little more.



#7 of 14 OFFLINE   Jason Charlton

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Posted January 14 2014 - 07:47 AM

Agreed that it's really tough to gauge what your needs are.

 

That being said - a few years ago, we splurged and had our deck completely redone. It was a MAJOR project (roughly 12'x50', adding a covered portion off the dining room. Overall budget was >30k). Absolutely the best decision we could have made. Our house backs to woods and we spend as much time out there as we can - listening to the stream while we have dinner and watching the birds, deer and other wildlife that wander by.

 

A big vacation would be nice, too. My wife and I haven't had one of those since our honeymoon. We're about 15 months away from our 10th anniversary - I think we'll splurge for a tropical getaway then.

 

Good luck to you!


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#8 of 14 OFFLINE   Adam Gregorich

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Posted January 14 2014 - 11:24 AM

Our dining room furniture gets used twice a year: Thanksgiving and Christmas.  Technically it gets used at other times, but only as a place to set stuff.  Deck depends on your weather and how much entertaining you do.  We did a big vacation over 10 years ago (Africa) and still talk about it, bad news is we want to go back.  HT depends on how long you are planning on staying in the house, and how often you plan on using it.  Car is always nice, but buy used.  We finally got rid of my wife's minivan (that I always seemed to get stuck driving) and got a "new" car.

 

Let us know what you decide and how you arrive at your decision :)



#9 of 14 OFFLINE   schan1269

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Posted January 14 2014 - 11:39 AM

I've never bough a new car either. Closest I came was a 1989 Supra Turbo I bought in '92 as a college self present.

#10 of 14 OFFLINE   Aaron Silverman

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Posted January 14 2014 - 11:43 AM

Patrick_S pretty much posted exactly what I was going to (aside from the sadly departed friend, but I agree with the sentiment).


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#11 of 14 OFFLINE   Al.Anderson

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Posted January 15 2014 - 03:39 AM

I'd go with Deck/Patio or Dining room set.
 

The others all become outdated, sometimes literally the next day. A vacation? What do you get, a few memories, some pictures and maybe some tourist trinkets.

 

Go for the more permanent items.

 

 

Overall, I side with the "it depends" sentiment.  But I disagree with the "thing" position.  I've been reading a number of studies recently that indicate people are much happier with experiences than things. 

 

http://www.cnn.com/2...ss.possessions/

 

Of course, even there it probably "depends".

 

With the mature response out of the way I'll respond in fun, the way the question was meant - new car!  Lots of buyer satisfaction with none of that silly research, preparation, and/or side effect impacts to daily life.  (Except for the dinning room upgrade, but that's just boring).



#12 of 14 OFFLINE   schan1269

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Posted January 15 2014 - 04:51 AM

Depends if these "things" create "experiences"...

 

 

That is as far as I'm taking that statement...



#13 of 14 OFFLINE   Everett Stallings

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Posted January 15 2014 - 04:55 AM

Outdoor Home Theatre!!


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#14 of 14 OFFLINE   DaveF

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Posted January 15 2014 - 06:15 PM

Great feedback! You can sleep well, knowing that my decision won't be made by HTF. But getting the input and conversation is fun and helpful.

Car: this is lowest priority. My car is 2004 Accord EX, with 140k miles. I'm the original owner. It still runs well and maintenance costs are normal. My wife's car is a year newer and has half the miles; also running normally. We'd like to upgrade cars to. Enter suit our current situation: a fuel efficient daily driver for me and a more luxurious car for, that I'd drive for vacation travels. But this can wait another year or two.

Vacation: I don't have much to say on this. I don't see this as a real choice for this year. But I suspect that in 2015 this will be required by The Wife.

Dining room set: Agree completely about the dangers of expensive furniture that never gets used. But my current set is a $150 yard sale four piece I bought seven years ago. We use it regularly to play games. A few times a year for eating. But the chairs are starting to fall apart, and can't be repaired reasonably. I've got something in mind, but can't find it. I thought I'd found what I wanted last year, but it was a discontinued set, and only scratched floor model was for sale. So table is growing in importance, but not crucial yet.

Deck: I lived in my previous house for 7 years and never got my deck built (or even the safety rail removed). I swore I wouldn't go another 7 years on this house. And I can't grill until I get a deck. (But I've learned to cook a mean pan-fried steak!) Still, this is a tough purchase. It's the most expensive, a major home project. And I'm honestly not sure how much I'll use it.

Basement Theater: I'm pre-wired for 5.1, front projector, and Ethernet. And I like TV, video games, and movies. :) A big project, because it requires moving the AV kit to the basement and getting a new (more modest) system for the living room. And furniture for the basement. I'm also wary of the state of display technology. 4k projection is now out for the high-end consumer, and I'd guess will be under $5k in three years. That's looking like a tough decision there. I'm also unsure how we'll end up using it. A big change from always using the living room, to watching in the basement.

The basement also could bring with it a big expense of replacing carpet with tile and putting in the bar (snack area with sink and mini-fridge, I think). And there the gaming table I want for board games :D

But this too is something I've wanted for years. And I could tackle it in stages, spreading the cost out if I didn't want to do it all at once.

I need to do research on projectors. (I hardly know where to start there) And we're going to the home show this weekend to look at local deck builders.




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