Building vs Buying (again)

We recently started to pay more attention to how our house was impacting our life. Well, I did. We had talked about putting feelers out for a move, potentially pretty far away. We were becoming bored with how things were working on a daily basis, and were looking for some sort of change. We got the idea to rearrange some things pretty significantly, so the two child bedrooms were quickly redone and the kids were pretty happy. I then put an idea to my wife that I had been kicking around for awhile, a full blown redo of our master bedroom. I got an okay on the Sketchup design, and it was away we go.

I’m not going to get into many details about my bedroom, but we organized it so I could have a full corner dedicated to my office. In the course of doing so, I found the need and want to replace my dresser. I had long wanted to build my own out of cherry or walnut, but I’m simply not ready at this time. So, I bought one. An Ikea one (at least it is all real wood). I like it. It immediately made me happier. A few days later, as things were getting finalized, I had an immediate need for a bookcase to help clean up the floor. Again, I chose an Ikea product over something I would build. The price was right, I didn’t need anything custom, just something to hold a bunch of books and magazines. It was the wise choice for me. I struggled trying to justify not building it myself, but I found a great resource from the Wood Whisperer called Build or Buy (easily found via Google or his site, I won’t link). The idea is to assign weights to questions to see what you should do. As I needed something stock and fast, and wouldn’t widely be seen, buying turned out to be the right choice.

The bedrooms are basically done, and look great. The master bedroom remodel is better than I ever could have expected, and I love it. The decision to buy was clearly the right one. Now though, I am ready to get the media bookcase started on, and I’m facing the same decision of build or buy. The bookcase certainly doesn’t have to be custom, the Ikea one would work fine with extra shelves. The cost of buying would be basically the same as building, once I factor in all materials and transportation. I feel more guilt about this because it isn’t an immediate need, but a want. The games are already on a bookcase, it’s just the organization isn’t ideal. It is not a factor in keeping that room clean. I want to build something again, but I don’t know if it’s this, and I don’t know if now is the time. It’s ridiculously hot, and while A/C helps with that, it does cost money.

I’ve got my cases ready to be measured again, and now I have a bookcase that I can do some playing around with. We’ll see. Perhaps I’ll think it over through the weekend and make a decision.

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