Thursday 1 May 2014

Good riddance

When we left uni, setting out on the great road of life, we pooled our resources, got a mortgage and bought a house.   We got the biggest mortgage that we could just about afford.   Mortgage rates, that were at around 7% promptly rose to 8% and thereafter drifted fairly quickly up to about 16%.  We were skint.

We budgeted our monthly outgoings to the penny.  After essentials like the mortgage, gas, electricity, travel to work, rates and food we had about 20 quid left per month for non-essentials like clothes or furniture.  We were lucky that during this whole time, we had no breakdowns of household appliances like the boiler, or we'd have been in deep doo-doo.

We were happy in those times to buy things that were cheap.  Second-hand was OK for things that were in good order, and we were always pleased to pick up a bargain.   So, now that things are not so financially squeezed, I see it as a duty (and a pleasure) to dispose of those things that we no longer need, in such a way as to benefit people (like my younger self, perhaps) who can make good use of them.   These things could be items in good working or decorative order, or perhaps they no longer work but someone with more skill, knowledge or time than I have, can bring them back to life.   The kitchen  and office revamp has resulted in some perfectly good or slightly used kit that no longer fits the style, to be available at bargain prices.

Ebay used to be my favourite avenue to market, but it seems to me that they're getting both too greedy and too restrictive.   And it doesn't seem to be so popular here in France as it is in the UK.  Here they prefer straightforward small ads, and the website seems to be the most successful.

I was pleased that our excellent solid wood dining room chairs were snapped up by a couple with a pair of young kids who were delighted that they would go into their dining room without even the need for a repaint.  The sofas from the gîte were getting a bit tatty for a place that aspires to be top rank, and have found new homes, scattered around the local area, aided by leboncoin and word-of-mouth.  Light fixtures that didn't sell online have been sent home with my sister to be offered to hubby's mum.  Coming soon onto the second-hand market are an armchair and a glass cupboard door.  Perhaps that will be a good riddance, in the nicest possible way.

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