top of page

Common Question Series: #3 How Do We Find Reliable Contractors to Work With?

One of the best things I've ever done was to tell Bryndee we should do the work on our first home ourselves. We had just bought an old duplex that was super run down and heavily smoked in. We had about 3 weeks to completely renovate both units before both us and our new tenants were set to move in. It was going to be "easy," all we had to do was rip out and replace the old carpet, paint both sides, redo the kitchen and bathrooms, and install new laminate flooring. Seemed doable at the time…. But it wasn’t quite that easy, at least for us. :)

We were both working full time so we would work on the house early mornings, late into the night, and on the weekends. We were tired, exhausted, and plugging along when it came time to do the painting. We had to put a heavy primer on all the walls and floors that worked as a sealant to get rid of the smoke smell. We rented a paint sprayer from Home Depot and sure enough, before long that thing jammed. I was trying to fix it but was unsuccessful, so Bryndee came over to help. While she was checking out the spray gun I decided to test it to see if she fixed it, and stupid me, I didn’t realize the sprayer was pointed right at her face. Before I knew it I was getting punched by my screaming wife who now had this heavy primer all in her eye. I was sure she was blind and knew I really messed that up. Lucky for both of us, we were able to wash it out without any permanent damage- other than the emotional scars I still have from being yelled at when all I was trying to do was help!

As angry as Bryndee was, and as scared for my life as I was, we tried to document me spraying her with a heavy primer right in the eye. I know it's super blurry and this is after she washed her face but if you look close you can see the white primer on the left side of her face, and my face questioning how I was ever going to redeem myself.

Unfortunately, it doesn’t end there. After a few days of the painting taking way long than expected, I was trying to make things up to Bryn and spent some extra time at the house one morning trying to finish up the paint job. I enlisted some help from my “nonprofessional” friends and we busted things out. We worked hard through the morning and completely finished painting the house, hallelujah! I had to run to work but I couldn’t wait for Bryndee to go over and see the surprise. After work that day I went straight over to the duplex knowing Bryndee would be there and couldn’t wait for the smiles and praise she would give me for doing such a good job. Wrong… instead I found a wife in tears with a paintbrush in her hand trying to fix the bad job I had done. Now that the paint was dry I could see uneven paint lines everywhere, I didn’t tape the window frames properly so I got paint on the frames and the windows themselves (yes I was that bad), and I found out we basically had to go back over everything again. Once again, my wife was in tears and I felt like I had just ruined the whole project (which I guess is kind of true).

In the end we finished the project and since it all worked out well I claim it to be one of my more proud moments. As a result of all this I have now been banned from ever picking up a paintbrush (or spray gun) in one of our houses again, and for that matter Bryn barely even trusts me to swing a hammer anymore. So when I say this was the best thing I ever did, it’s because I got myself out of a whole lot of future work!