Sarah Stultz: The perks and woes of being a homeowner

Published 8:45 pm Tuesday, September 14, 2021

Nose for News by Sarah Stultz

It’s one of those weeks at our house where we are cringing at being homeowners.

You know, those weeks where something goes wrong with the house out of your control and you know you have to call in a professional to fix it.

It started for us a couple weeks ago when the lightbulb went out in the light fixture above our washer and dryer.

We didn’t think much of it, but kept forgetting to get more lightbulbs at the store.

A few days ago, I went to switch the laundry and stepped into some water with my bare foot directly underneath the fixture. That’s when I knew there was more to the story.

We tried that day to remove the fixture from the ceiling but were unable to get it down. We tried calling electricians and plumbers, but everyone we called was booked out.

After a few days without any luck in getting a professional, and the area around the fixture starting to get a little “squishy,” my husband asked our neighbor, who is an electrician, to come over and see if he could get the fixture out. After a little maneuvering, the fixture essentially came down, followed by a splash of water.

As I type this, there is now a hole in the ceiling and we await a plumber to come and figure out where the leak is originating.

I cringe when I think of possible scenarios, what might need to be replaced — and of course the costs involved.

Aside from the plumbing costs, there’s also the costs that will come along with drywall replacement and whatever else they encounter.

We’ve called the plumber a couple times since we lived in our current house for a few clogs, but this is by far the worst of our plumbing woes to date.

I think about the times we’ve had to call professionals in the past, and about how easy it was when we were renting many years ago to simply call the landlord if we encountered a problem.

While that was nice in many ways — especially because we didn’t have to pay for the repairs — I think the benefits of being a homeowner still outweigh the “perks” of being a renter.

While I haven’t been able to do as many fun renovations in our homes over the years as I would have liked, it’s still great to be able to have our own space that we can do with as we please and invest our time and energy into.

Fingers crossed this little speed bump won’t be as bad as I’m expecting.

Sarah Stultz is the managing editor of the Tribune. Her column appears every Wednesday.