It’s summer, not yet, but here in Ohio it’s currently 70 degrees plus oddly enough and it’s only the beginning of May. My grass has started to sprout, er uhm.. giant green stalk actually and it’s time to get the mowing season started. I have a VERY Small lot and a brief background is my oil/gas powered “machine” went out on me at the beginning of LAST summer. Sure, I could have gone out to buy a new powered mower and spend $150-$300 on a gas powered-get out of my way lawn mower, I mean everyone has one of those and how the heck else do you cut grass if you don’t have an oiled-machine? I took a step back and went back into “time” for the method to my “huge” aka tiny lawn this year, which ended up being the frugal method. Look at this beast and let’s talk about it:
The Purchase Decision on my Push-Lawn Mower
I knew I needed to cut my grass, as it had to be getting over the 12 inch in length mark in my small back yard (the only area that gets sun, it’s sad but not a bad thing). I had a few alternative options – I could pay someone $20 to mow my yard from various job ad posts. I could borrower my cousin’s or my family’s lawn mower and make the travel trips of 2 hours total to make that happen + giving the mower back aka another extra trip. Also – it’s not easy transporting a gas powered lawn mower if you don’t have the trunk space, trust me on that. As I stated in the opening, I could have spent well over a few hundred dollars on a new mower, but for my small yard? I don’t think so. Another alternative – I could have bought parts, tried to fix mine or take it somewhere and more than likely spend between $50-$150 in time, parts or services. Why would I want to spend so much energy, time and money on a machine that had broke down on me previously? That doesn’t make sense either. I could have just let my yard turn into a jungle, I guess is another alternative. But I’m on a pursuit to save 60% of my income, as it is an integral part to my 2015 goals. Therefore, for the final alternative…
This led to a discussion with a few friends an co-workers, Bert included. How about the old-school, blade chopping, no gas/oil or electricity using, beast mode Push Mower? I guess I never really considered that there was once a method used to mow your yard before using Gas/Oil or plugging it into an outlet. You mean to tell me after all of these years of filling up my mower, struggling for a half hour at a time to pull the rope to get the thing started, there was another, easier, more frugal method to cut grass? Talk about a game changer for me. I’m always trying to be more frugal, whether it’s asking for a discount on items/services or even finding fun ways to save during the winter months. I began my research, and immediately looked at amazon. I had approximately $43.4 in reward points through amazon, so felt that I should buy a new one, with new fresh blades. That’s when I stumbled upon this bad boy – the “Great States 204-14 14-Inch Deluxe Hand Reel Push Lawn Mower” for $73.99. With the discounts/reward points, the price came down to for my out-of-pocket at $30.59, my dividend income from PM last month could have purchased this without the discounts, just to give perspective on how inexpensive this tool is. Well, I clicked order now and it shipped within 2 days to my house, in a nice small package.
So on May 3rd (date of this writing), I assembled the push-mower and that may have taken longer than the actual mow itself. There were 4 handles I had to screw together and doing it by yourself wasn’t hard but more than likely added 5 minutes to the total activity. It was around an 8 out of 10 on the easy scale for assembly, I can say that much – 3 screws, and that’s it, just more of a juggling act screwing all of the metal or steel pieces together.
Once I had this bad boy assembled, I went to work. And wow – this damn thing actually works. In about 15 minutes tops, I had my entire portion of my backyard mowed that actually grows a consistent amount of grass and by today – the grass had to be well over a foot long in certain sunny areas. There is the picture below to show what it looked like after the mow job.
The pros of this tool is that: (1) Does not cost anything to operate but a little elbow grease in the pushing in tough spots (2) It can be hinged off to transport frankly anywhere (3) it’s VERY light (at least in my perspective (4) cut extremely well (5) storage space needed is minimal (6) is the most frugal way to cut the grass.
The cons of this tool is/could be that: (1) The blades may become dull given the usage and if not taken care of (2) may take extra strength in the extra long/stronger grassy spots (3) you have to rake the grass out if you do not like the grass to sit there (4) Doesn’t cover as much of a mow as a lawn mower does = more “ups and downs”
Overall Conclusion and Summary on the Push Mower
Overall – I am EXTREMELY pleased with the mower I purchased. It cost me out of pocket less than $31, doesn’t cost anything to run/fuel/propel and is a great way to spend an extra few minutes walking/exercising outside in the great weather. It performed a great/clean cut for me and I’m almost mad at myself for not knowing about these things – talk about being stuck in the “mindset” of everyone owning a big, powerful machine, when really it should be based on need and not what the Jones’ have or that mentality of “it’s the only way”. If you have a fairly small yard and are looking for an easier, less problematic, costly way to mow your yard – this is the trick, and I can say it’s going to be fun performing the next mow, no joke. This will help me in saving close to 60% of my income, so that I can focus on other things – such as investments and the like or having more cash to paydown the mortgage. What does everyone think? Do you currently/already own one of these? Would you consider purchasing one if you don’t? Any other experiences have you had with one? Thanks all – appreciate the comments and visits, talk soon!