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Re: gangrenous foot

Posted by alexandra_k on September 1, 2017, at 21:22:00

In reply to Re: gangrenous foot, posted by alexandra_k on September 1, 2017, at 21:00:51

My Dad was a builder. I remember when I was young on Sunday he would take us for a drive through the new building subdivisions where he worked. Suburbia... Starting to hit upon the city limits.

I remember him saying that... People were building bigger homes than they could afford. They were building 5 or 6 bedroom family homes and couldn't really afford that... They could only really afford 2 or 3... I remember him saying that they were starting out mortgaged up to the hilt and... Well...

The whole thing would hit a bottleneck. You needed the electrition to come and get something done before the inspector would visit and sign it off and nothing could be done until then. And delays... Cost money. Time where people are standing around. About how when things are costed you costed in things working to schedule and not days where you needed to pay builders to stand around waiting for the electrition to show up... Days waiting for when the building inspector was next able to come to sign off on the next thing... But people started out mortgaged up to the hilt.

Sometimes he would show us things they were doing - with genuine pride. One of the places had a stone slab floor with under-floor heating. Another house had an interesting architect design. But mostly it was kitset homes, yeah. And mostly, he was lamenting that the people couldn't really afford to build their homes.

Later there were all kinds of problems reported with houses that were built around that time. That they leaked, primarily. That corners were cut on quality of building materials... Corners were cut... To the point where people ended up with leaky homes that were damaging to their health. Homes that were rotting around them.

My Dad was doing up his own home. Renovating a semi-character. Put far more money into doing it up (and far more time and care) than he would ever get back for it in any kind of property market. Totally idiotic things from that point of view... Turning a 3 bedroom house into a 2 bedroom house - with a larger master bedroom and an en suite bathroom. Quality fittings. Brass door knobs. Native timber wood that he paint stripped back and lightly varnished. I remember he had friends who were electritions and plumbers and so on... They would spend half a day working on each others houses...

But then I think it was less about working on their own houses that they were living in and more about working on their cheap investment buy that they wanted to surface renovate only to flick on quickly for a profit. He never got into doing that. In fact... I think he stopped being a part of things when it was 'volunteer work' towards such ends... Maybe because it wasn't a joy when people weren't taking pride in their work, anymore. Maybe it was that. Taking advantage of people who didn't know the piles were about to give out, or were only propped up precariously, or whatever.

I remember him lamenting the demise of the apprenticeship system... About how these kids would do 3 years at tech before arriving on the building site. And then it turned out they couldn't hit a nail into a piece of wood straight. And then it turned out they couldn't turn up to the job on time each day. Either because they didn't have the transport or they couldn't figure out the transport or because they didn't have an alarm clock or... It doesn't matter why. Point is that they were mostly only sending on unsuitable kids.

Where do all the suitable kids go?

Someplace to be kicked around... I'm sure...




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