Posted by: Patti Dickinson | 11/27/2018

When a Bargain isn’t a Bargain

For sale: Pottery Barn queen sofa sleeper. $500. Rarely used.


Several months ago, I found this “for sale” ad on a neighborhood website. Since we downsized by half about two years ago, sleeping space is at a premium when our kids come to visit.

So I bought it.

We hired “Bungii”, which is basically a heavy-lifting sort of service. You send them a picture of what you want moved and they shoot you a quote. $30. Seemed really low, yeah the old adage about if it’s too good to be true….he got to our house with the sofa. He – singular. One guy. Not too sure how one guy is going to get this up our stairs. He said right away that he’d have to call for reinforcements. Another guy came and after lots of grunting, out-loud problem- solving, a good bit of sweat, and the repeated thud sound of the sofa hitting the plaster wall, the sofa arrived at it’s almost-destination. It was in the upstairs hall. Upended.

More grunting, more what-if-we’s……..there was no way this 32” wide sofa was going into a room with a 29” doorway. Doorways have not one single bit of give. The Bungii guy suggests that we are just “that close” and if we could get the door frame off, the sofa would go right in.

Call another handyman who takes off the door frame. Call Bungii back. They send two different guys out. Déjà vu. Grunting, banging, sliding, guesswork, if-we-turn-it….heavy breathing. They come downstairs to give us their professional opinion. This couch in not going into the room. Both my husband and I are ready to cut our losses. So we tell them to bring the sofa back downstairs and we’ll just put it in the garage. Before dark, I will be posting my own want ad.

So I can’t possibly make this up.

They say they can’t get it back down the stairs. That it won’t fit. My husband reminds them that it got up the stairs so it’ll come back down. Suffice it to say that the plaster on the wall going downstairs looks like a demolition crew had the wrong house. Not just scrapes, holes.They have to take the bannister off. They leave the house with the screws to the bannister in their pocket.

So – we are out $500. 6 screws. A bannister that is off the wall. Multiple holes in the plaster that will require patching and painting, a door frame that has to be put back in, walls that need mudding, and walls that need painting.

But there is also tremendous value in a funny story. We can’t drive down a street in Kansas City that has a couch out by the street for pick up that my husband doesn’t take the opportunity to ask me if I think that sofa will fit. I have a lifelong propensity to leaving myself wide open to this kind of stuff. But I’ve got lots of funny stories.



  1. Oh Patti!!!!!! Life happens i guess.

    Sent from Yahoo Mail on Android

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