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Old 03-09-12, 08:43 PM   #1
no1mad
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Anyone still using coin operated laundry machines?

There are some apartments nearby that I'm going to try and convince my wife that we need to move into. We'd lose a bedroom, a one car garage, and a fenced in backyard on a corner lot, but gain a 3/4 bath and me not having to do yard work.

We'd save $190 on rent + the inclusion of water in that rent, but we'd have to get a storage unit to soak up the crap that's already in the garage, so that's actually evens out. I estimate the heating and cooling costs would probably be lower as well (the rental we're in now has minimal insulation and I've had triple digit heating/cooling bills).

The deposit and moving expense would be really tight, but I figure we'd recoup those costs in 3-5 months just on the savings in rent alone.

But it's the cost of doing laundry that has me questioning how much am I going to actually save? Or realistically, how often should I expect a machine to malfunction after I've already started it- won't spin/drain, dryer doesn't work, or ... ?
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Old 03-09-12, 09:26 PM   #2
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LOL, they're going away from coin operated machines. Now you use a card, like a debit card, that you fill at the landlord's office.

The machines seem to be basically reliable. The complex that I'm at has a service that owns the machines and takes care of all the repair work. So they need to keep the machines up to make money and the landlord just takes a share. About $1.25 per load for washing, $1.00 for drying.

The biggest problems are figuring out the best times to do your laundry and cleaning out other peoples lint.

The best way to know for sure is go visit the laundry room and ask the people there. Anything else is just other people yacking about their situations.
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Old 03-09-12, 09:37 PM   #3
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No1mad, I thought you owed the house well, I now used coin laundry (or card or whatever) only when my machines are broken. The public machines work but usually they rig a few dryers to make them less effective and force you to use the dryers twice.

The 1.25 washer and 1.00 dryer is standard on the really really small machines. With a big family, you gonna use *many* of these micro-washers. You'll probably end up on the outside public laundromat where the real machines cost 7 or 9 bucks. And the pain of hauling the stuff up and down the stairs...

I only get apartments with washer/dryer hookups. I've seen places that don't have the hookups, but don't mind if you hire your own plumber are hock'em up yourself.
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Old 03-09-12, 09:44 PM   #4
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The machines seem to be basically reliable. The complex that I'm at has a service that owns the machines and takes care of all the repair work. So they need to keep the machines up to make money and the landlord just takes a share. About $1.25 per load for washing, $1.00 for drying.

The biggest problems are figuring out the best times to do your laundry and cleaning out other peoples lint.

The best way to know for sure is go visit the laundry room and ask the people there. Anything else is just other people yacking about their situations.
+1 I haven't rented in a long time, but I remember the machines being pretty reliable, and getting fixed quickly if not. They are a source of income for the property so chances are if they are broken they won't be for long.

Most people do laundry after work or on weekends, so if you can use the machines at unpopular times you shouldn't have too many problems.
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Old 03-09-12, 11:04 PM   #5
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No1mad, I thought you owed the house well, I now used coin laundry (or card or whatever) only when my machines are broken. The public machines work but usually they rig a few dryers to make them less effective and force you to use the dryers twice.

The 1.25 washer and 1.00 dryer is standard on the really really small machines. With a big family, you gonna use *many* of these micro-washers. You'll probably end up on the outside public laundromat where the real machines cost 7 or 9 bucks. And the pain of hauling the stuff up and down the stairs...

I only get apartments with washer/dryer hookups. I've seen places that don't have the hookups, but don't mind if you hire your own plumber are hock'em up yourself.
Nope. We moved into this rental back in Oct. of 2009 after unsuccessfully trying to avoid foreclosure of the house we built in '06 (which is about 6 houses down separated by 2 streets from this one). Even went through Legal Aid after BOA refused our payment, but we were SOL. Just happened to find this house riding around on my bike. Kids kept the school and bus stop, so minimum impact on their lives. Got the notice of Sheriff Sale slated for 12/28/08 after we already bugged out.

Fast forward to this week. On Monday I received via FedEx and USPS and again on Tuesday via USPS a total of three identical packets from BOA and/or their affiliate to apply for a modification through the Affordable Homes Act or something to that effect. If it weren't for the fact that I'm currently unemployed and in the Pre-File stage of the Bankruptcy process (my mom paid an attorney for his services on my behalf- her way of helping us out financially ), I'd be tempted to contact them and shoot them an offer.
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Old 03-09-12, 11:36 PM   #6
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^ Hope it turns out for you somehow. Extra points for keeping kid disruption at bay
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Old 03-09-12, 11:39 PM   #7
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My apartment complex uses coin operated machines and I like it. The same company owns the more upscale complex next door, and the main differences between the two are the nicer ones have fireplaces and their own washer/dryer combo. But the rent's $200 more per month over there! It cost me $2.50-$3.00 to wash and dry a load, and I wash ever ten days to two weeks. I've never seen the machines malfunction, but they're pretty new and there are about a dozen of them so I don't imagine it would be a problem. If the machines were old I'd be more concerned. Disregarding higher rent, I have wondered if it cost me more for the electricity to wash and dry a load of laundry in my own machines than in the coin operated ones. When I had my own house, it seemed I always had to run the dryer twice to finish the job, whereas the coin operated dryer does it in one cycle.
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Old 03-10-12, 01:40 AM   #8
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We have several laundry rooms at work. We've had three contractors in the past 25 years and they've all been fine. Our biggest complaint is that people occasionally wash oily rags or dry wetsuits.

The cards were genius. People lose them or move before they use the remaining balance. It's free money.
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Old 03-10-12, 02:00 AM   #9
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I wonder how hard it would be to modify the coin/card system and hook it up to a computer interface. Making it so you could add balance to your "laundry account" trough the internet and such.
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Old 03-10-12, 11:22 AM   #10
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i do, they have a 24 hour laundry. and i tend to wash at odd time of the night so it is just me down there.
in-out. every few weeks. I just same the change from my pockets it usually is enough to get it done
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Old 03-10-12, 03:49 PM   #11
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not at the moment but I think my washing machine might be on it's last legs so coin ops may be metaphorically in the post.
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Old 03-10-12, 05:17 PM   #12
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I've lived in small apartment buildings all along. They all had coin-op washers. They have all been $1/load. My current landlord recently replaced the coin-op washer, as the old one had died.
I've never used the coin-op driers. We have a few of the folding drying racks and hang everything to dry in a spare room. Most everything will dry overnight.
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Old 03-10-12, 08:49 PM   #13
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But it's the cost of doing laundry that has me questioning how much am I going to actually save? Or realistically, how often should I expect a machine to malfunction after I've already started it- won't spin/drain, dryer doesn't work, or ... ?
Are you talking about a laundry room in the cellar of your prospective new place, or a laundromat out somewhere in town? Last time I used a laundromat, not sooooooooo long ago, they had a rate per pound you could pay an attendant to do your wash, and that covered all malfunctions for sure.
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Old 03-10-12, 10:46 PM   #14
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We have a laundromat here in the mobile home park. It still takes coins, and the maintenance is outsourced. We only used it once in 2006 when we'd just moved in and the Sears Outlet refurb washer we bought was broken but the dryer wasn't. So I washed the clothes in the laundromat and hand-trucked them home to the dryer. Only did it once or twice before returning the original W/D and picking up a new laundry set at Fry's.
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Old 03-10-12, 11:12 PM   #15
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Considering the relatively big-ticket differentials that you have to calculate (rent, storage fee, heating/cooling), it's hard to imagine that the laundry bill is going to be the factor that tips the scale in either direction. Especially when you figure that even if you aren't throwing coins into the slots each time you do a wash in your current pad, it sounds like you are still adding some $$ onto your monthly utility bill for water and electricity or gas, which would not be the case in the coin-op scenario. So how much of a difference would the laundry make, really?
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