Warren Buffet has said many times in Berkshire’s annual report “if you don’t know jewellery, know your jeweller.”
I can vouch for this as true; a friend of mine runs a jewellery store and he has given me amazing deals.
Most of us don’t buy jewellery on a regular basis, however. And some of us might even get away with not buying it at all. For most of us, though, I think the Buffet statement could read “if you don’t know cars, know your mechanic.”
I would love to learn more about automobiles. As it stands, I have a decent understanding of what problem I have, but have no idea of how to fix it. I have been fortunate in that I have been going to the same mechanic for the past 7 years. He runs a small garage from the side of his house, and there is no one I trust more with my car.
Yesterday my car started acting up a bit, so I took it in to the shop today. He worked on the car for about an hour, tweaked a part, and gave me an oil change (he also gave me a short lecture for driving too far without a change, to which I sheepishly acknowledged I was at fault for) and only charged me for the new oil he put in.
As far as the part goes, he said it’s a bit of an expensive part, so he tried to McGyver it a bit, and said to come back if I have any problems.
I cannot think of any other mechanic that would do his best to avoid having me pay more. I think a good number would say the part is shot, order a new one, and charge the labour and shipping.
This is not the first time this has happened, either. I knew I was having trouble with either a spark-plug, or the fuel-line some time ago so I brought it in. He not only fixed that problem, but pulled my muffler off to patch a hole that he could hear. I think he charged me about the amount of the welding rod that he used.
It means, of course, that I bring him a little gift every time to thank him for the last time. Usually a brand of senbei crackers he told me he likes.
No matter what, I surely get more value than I pay for.
If you don’t have a great mechanic, you may have to build some rapport for a few years, but once you have a mechanic you can trust, you know that you will never be suckered into buying lemons or blood diamonds.