On top of all I have going on, I am now weighing pros and cons for a decision that came up since Friday. I haven't made my final decision yet, but thought I might show you how I process such a decision.
It started on Thursday with a phone from a soft-spoken girl who asked if I was aware that I was eligible for a climate action grant. Well, no, but I know our federal and provincial governments are sort of competing in this area. She asked if my furnace was over 10 years. (I did some quick mental math, as it was installed in 2009 as part of a gov't First Time Home-owner Grant; so it was 12 years old now). She said an interviewer would come on Friday between 4-5 pm for a 10 minute interview, and I might qualify for a $1000 grant.
Oh? Okay.... Might as well wait and find out.
Two very friendly men in uniforms I didn't recognize arrived well before 4 pm. We had a lively, friendly visit as they asked questions, and I took them downstairs to see my furnace and water heater. Then I pulled out my utility bills for Jan-March.
The one man, Ryan, did some math on his electronic pad, while his partner went around my house installing LED lights. (Later, I was surprised at how bright my kitchen, bathroom and bedroom had become!) Ryan soon announced that they could save me a lot of money on my utility bills, if I allowed them to replace my furnace with a new one on a rental basis, with maintenance included. I would also get a rebate in a few days of $250.
In all our friendly chatter, they learned that I'd written a novel ( the reason I went online and learned how to build websites). They wanted to see it, so I had partially crawl under my desk to bring some out of my stash in a carton. Both of them bought a copy for cash!
The plan was that installers would show up on Monday morning to install a NEW more energy efficient furnace. I was busy over the weekend with my own business agenda, and couldn't even get to the work in the garden because my indoor to-do agenda was too exhausting.
Then yesterday (Monday) morning as I started my devotional time, I suddenly realized that this big change was coming and I'd forgotten of my pledge back when I had all those problems with the security system, that I would NEVER again agree to a contract just presented at the door, in effect, and without taking time over several days to pray and determine God's will in the matter. I began to get nervous that the installers would be here suddenly and I did not know God's will in this matter yet!
My neighbour called and we discussed times we had made such decisions - that just made me even more nervous about having agreed to this without seeing the fine print of the agreement. When we finished I phoned Ryan, as he had urged me to call him with any questions. He told me that the installation had been delayed until Friday, and he marveled I had not heard from their office yet. He also informed me that the contract was downstairs by the furnace.
It is legible but in small font and a whole legal sheet full! So I plan to study it today. (I saw that I have 10 days to cancel this agreement).
I've already determined some questions I need answers for;
If I want a different furnace in the future, am I stuck with theirs until they decide I need a new one?
Or, is a monthly saving of $47 on all my monthly utility bills, worth enslaving myself to their plan for the rest of my life? (I believe the Bible talks about NOT indenturing oneself to others, ie. enslaving myself).
How easily can they raise that monthly payment plan so that my costs go up after all? Or be sold to foreign investors? (Rita had told me how her security/phone company had been bought up by another and now the people there spoke some foreign language and she could not make herself understood; very upsetting!) Ryan assured me on the phone yesterday, that there was no danger of their company being bought by another. But then he is an employee, not the owner.
I see that the monthly payments are $144.28 for 180 months (15 years!) and they have a right to raise the payment rates a minimum of 3.9% each year. This is just from the first 3 paragraphs!
I won't take you through the whole document right now, as this may take some time, but I do feel very much that I need to think and pray this all through very slowly, carefully, without friendly and outgoing men distracting me. I do hope to have a conclusion - maybe even today, or for sure before Friday, so I can prevent the installation if that is the way my decision goes.
If you should wish to pray that I discern God's wisdom on this, I would appreciate that!
Ruth Marlene Friesen
The Responsible One