People have gotten upset modernly about how airlines have stripped down what is offered in the basic price of a ticket and pushed everything into optional (for additional expense) upgrades (check baggage, carry on, food, drinks, seat assignments, oxygen, and so on). However, after looking into a new build home, I’m thinking I know where the airlines got the idea.
After all, even going with a good builder, it’s astounding how much the price can change based on things you, of course, must have. Here is a basic template of how the conversation goes:
Buyer: What comes standard for X?
Builder/Developer/Designer/Etc.: Well, X is fine…but no one will ever buy your house from you if you go with X, you’ll never be able to change it, you will hate X for the rest of your life and forever rue the day you picked X, and no one will ever love you again. You will die a miserable, painful death and your family will be cursed for nineteen generations…all because you picked X.
Buyer: Ah, in that case I’ll go with something much more expensive. (Homage to Dave Barry’s bit about buying running shoes.)
Builder/Developer/Designer/Etc.: Of course.
Seriously. Carpet? Well, the flooring comes standard with angry, rabid wolverines who like to lie on their backs and shred anyone who walks atop. We really suggest you upgrade for $10,000 to something at least resembling carpet or hardwood floors. Oven? Well, the standard appliance is formed of strike anywhere match heads soaked in napalm, but we really recommend spending the additional GDP of Paraguay to upgrade to stainless steel or at least something not flammible.
This will go on for quite a while. By the time you are finished, an affordable home will be much more cost comparable to recreating Versaille, complete with a cloned version of Marie-Antoinette, in the middle of Tribeca (with a good view).
Okay, maybe it isn’t quite that bad. It feels like that right now, though.