Rewatching the Good Old Shows

Lately, old shows from the 1980’s and the 1990’s have been coming out on DVDs and frankly, I was quite excited by the prospect of being able to watch the shows I loved to watch as I was growing up. So, when the first season of Sliders became available for renting, I jumped at the chance to watch it all over again.

It was just as good as I remembered it. I enjoyed seeing Q-Ball and the gang “sliding” from alternate dimension to alternate dimension all over again. Some of the special effects weren’t all that convincing as it did back in the 90’s but the stories are still pretty cool.

Next, we tried watching Quantum Leap with Dr Sam Beckett “leaping” back and forth in time hoping that the next leap is going to take him back to the present. As with Sliders, the special effects weren’t up to par with modern-day effects (as expected, of course). Still, the stories were pretty interesting and I was always excited to find out what happens next (I’ve forgotten how all the episodes ended).

And latest one we’re watching is MacGyver. I found the show very educational as a kid in the 80’s and thought MacGyver was a very cool guy. I just started watching season one of the show and I started seeing things about it that just didn’t gel.

Like, who or what is MacGyver actually working for? And in the first episode, there was this explosion in an underground secret lab and the people there needed saving. So what does the government do? They didn’t call a rescue team. No. They called MacGyver. Why? And in the same episode, he got to kiss the girl whom he just knew for maybe less than an hour. Heck, the intelligent things MacGyver did was more plausible than some of the story elements.

Anyway, I can’t remember most of the MacGyver episodes. That’s why I’m watching them again. Right now, I’m still at episode three, so I can only hope that it gets better with every episode I watch.

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Published in: on September 30, 2005 at 11:23 pm  Comments (3)  

Freebies for your mobile

Mobile phone expenses quickly add up and for budget-concious people like us, pre-paid deals are the best way to go because we could budget the amount we recharge and how long it would have to last. Sending SMS or texting instead of making a call is also a good way to save but could still blow your budget if you’re not careful and at times may leave you wondering if perhaps you should have just called the other party instead.

If you like texting and use a computer most of the time anyway, signing up for a free account at SMSPup.com could save you heaps. It’s a free computer to mobile texting service where you earn points to be able to send free SMS to any other phone in Australia. You’d need a valid Australian phone number and an email address to register. Text messages sent through this service would look like it came directly from your phone except that it would have a short blurb at the end saying that it was sent through SMSPup. The upside is that the receiver could instantly hit Reply in his/her mobile, compose the message and hit Send. You’ll then receive the reply in your mobile phone.

SMSPup will regularly send you advertising emails in order for you to earn points (1 point = 1 free SMS) but they won’t spam you with numerous advertisements. I think only received about 5 emails from them in the last month. Another good thing that could come from signing up with them is that you learn about promotions from various advertising sponsors. One recent promotion I received from SMSPup was about a new prepaid mobile provider named RevTel promising to send out a free SIM Starter Pack with $20 loaded for anyone interested to sign up. I did and received the promised SIM Starter Pack a couple of days later. If you want to port your number over, you could sign up for the $30 free pre-paid credit instead. But before you transfer your number, make sure that you check out their rates first. Although their call rates are competitive, they charge a 15c fee per day and a 50c fee everytime you recharge your account and calling customer care is not cheap either with its $2 flagfall and 9.9c per 30 seconds.

If you think the cheap call rates outweigh the cost of the fees or if you just want to try their service first, you could still sign up for the free no-obligation $20 SIM Starter Pack. At the very least, you’d have several days to use up for free text and phone calls before you decide.

Published in: on September 30, 2005 at 7:15 pm  Comments (2)  

Melbourne housing ‘most affordable’

Citing a June quarter report from the Real Estate Institute of Australia, Victorian treasurer John Brumby said yesterday that Melbourne’s housing prices are the most affordable compared to the two other big cities, Sydney and Brisbane. Median house prices, loan repayments and weekly family income were among the factors measured in determining affordability.

I don’t know about Melbourne being the most affordable city to buy in because there are cheaper suburbs as well as expensive ones in every city. In fact, free newspaper MX ran a poll yesterday posing the question to readers if they believe that Melbourne’s housing is affordable, 80% of the respondents said no.

However, if you’re thinking of buying your own home, now might still be a good time to do so since the government’s First Home Owner’s Bonus of $5000 would only be effective for contracts entered into until the 31st of December this year. Starting next year till the 30 June 2007, the bonus would be decreased to $3000. Add to that the non-income tested grant of $7000 for first home owners and that’s $12,000 that could go towards paying your stamp duty and other fees.

Which made me think about what we went through these past few weeks in our own search for our first home. Here are the things “we learned which wished we knew then” and hope it would help you in your own search.

  1. Get your loan pre-approval first since this would give you a budget to work with. Finding a property you like, going through the negotiation process and then later finding out that you can’t find financing is a big waste of time and effort for everyone involved. Not to mention the disappointment and regret you’d feel to let the opportunity to own the place slip through your hands.
  2. Make a list of must-haves and good-to-haves. If you’re co-owning the property with a partner or a spouse, talk about what you both want and make a list. In our case, we both want a 3-bedroom free-standing brick house (or 2 bedrooms plus a study) with a low-maintenance yard in a quiet street. My only must-have is that the property should be near public transport and my want-to-have is that the interior of the house be well-lighted, making the best possible use of any natural light coming in. Gj’s must-haves are that the house be a modern one (no Edwardians, thank you very much) and that the bathroom is clean and well-maintained. He also prefer that the house be a low-maintenance one (meaning no floating floorboards), comes with appliances like air-conditioning and dishwasher and that the property be situated in a neighbourhood with other modern houses (possibly a new estate).
  3. Browse through real property sites such as RealEstate.com.au and Domain.com.au to look for properties and neighbourhoods that suit your needs. Go to open inspections and if you plan on bidding at auctions, go to auctions as an observer as well.
  4. Once you’ve narrowed down your search to a few good neighbourhoods, sign up for email alerts in RealEstate.com.au and Domain.com.au to be instantly alerted when new properties go on the market.
  5. Buy the weekend newspapers to have a good idea of how much similar properties are worth in the suburb you’re interested in. RealEstate.com.au’s Sold properties section is also a good place to go. Note that prices listed may not be entirely accurate but a price range or a near enough listed price would be better than having no idea at all. Alternatively, you could buy home price guides for a fee.
  6. If you know someone who lives in the neighbourhood you like, ask if you could have their copies of the weekly community paper. These community papers usually have a real estate section listing the properties on the market and developments in new estates. These papers are also a good source of news articles about the area, the people who live there and their concerns/problems.
  7. You may also talk to real estate agents and tell them what your requirements are. You could request them to contact you once a property that may match your needs goes into the market.
  8. Shortlist the properties that you’d want to inspect. Most properties are open to inspection at the same time (for us it was on Saturdays between 11:00 to 3:00) and you may have to decide which ones are worth visiting and which ones you could afford to skip.
  9. After inspecting a property, create a sketch of the house’s layout to help you remember how it looks like. Make notes of what you like and don’t like about the property. These notes would be a quick way to eliminate the properties that doesn’t suit your needs and the ones that may need some work but could possibly be in your shortlist. Agents usually contacts you several days after the inspection and ask you what you think of the property, your notes would be a handy reference in this instance as well.
  10. Visit the property more than once. Real estate agents worth their salt know this and expect you to do so. The real estate agent of the house we bought asked us our first impressions the first time we visited the property and gave us his contact details, saying we could arrange for additional inspections anytime. Overall, we inspected the property twice, did several drive-bys on different times of the day, once at night when we parked near the house and strolled around the neighbourhood.
  11. Know when to compromise when buying an existing house. Unless you build your own house, the properties you see on the market would always have one or two points against it. Even if you build from scratch, there are no guarantees that what you build would be the perfect house you picture in your mind. For us, the property we eventually ended up with met all the items in our must-have list but came short in the good-to-have department. We made a second inspection and studied the floor plan of the house, figured that the good-to-haves could easily be added in later and made sure we’re happy with the property as it is in the meantime.
  12. Recognise a hard sell and know when to walk away. Give yourself time to think about the purchase and if the agent is pressuring you to sign before you are sure, it may be better for you to walk away. The agent of the first house we made an offer on was quite pushy and would like us to sign immediately. We’ve inspected that house once that afternoon and he told us that there was this other couple who have already put in an offer and that we should put in an offer before the day ends if we liked the property. We liked the property but wasn’t sure about the suburb since it’s still fairly underdeveloped. We called him later that day and he said that we should sign a contract note immediately, we asked if we could do the signing the next day since it’s already quite late but he kept on insisting that he could go over to our place to have the papers signed. In the end, we said no (maybe to his great shock and disappointment). Thinking about it now, we’re better off with the property we ended up with compared to that first house and saying no then paid off.
  13. There would always be ‘another couple’. Gj was telling some office colleagues about his experience with the pushy real estate agent mentioned above when a colleague who has recently bought a property for his daughter said that there would always be that other couple. He said that he had made several offers and every single time, the agent would make mention of this other couple who is also interested on the property and may be willing to pay more than he was offering. True or not, his advice is that we should only make an offer of what we think is a fair price for the property.
  14. Have a backup plan, or what I call ‘the other property we like’. In our case, we’ve narrowed down the list to two properties in the same neighbourhood with the first property having a better street location and being the nearer match to our must-haves and good-to-haves list. If the sale of this property fell through, we thought that we’d make an offer for the second property and be happy with it too. We were lucky that both properties were for sale at the same time. If you can’t find another property that closely match your needs, you could always opt to wait for another property to come up. Your first choice may be bought by someone else in the intervening time though so make sure that you’d be okay with missing out on that purchase.
  15. It may be better to consult with a conveyancer or solicitor first before signing rather than after. It is not uncommon for prospective buyers to sign a contract note and be given 3 cooling-off days to get out of the contract after consulting a conveyancer or solicitor (in private sales only, no cooling off period applies for auctions). The cooling off period comes with a small price though, if you back out within the cooling-off period, the seller can withhold $100 of your deposit or 0.2% of the purchase price, whichever is more according to the Law4u site. In our case, we had a conveyancer read the section 32 before signing (which means there won’t be a cooling-off period for us anymore since we’ve consulted with the conveyancer already prior to signing) but at least we don’t lose anything between the time that the conveyancer receives the documentation and the time we signed.
  16. As with most everything else, any research you do will pay off in the end. We’ve read several books, browsed through numerous websites, watched videos and talked to some very helpful people. Aside from the list I’ve posted before, here are a few other references we found useful:
    • Your home: buying, selling, renovating, building (99 Q&As from the experts) by Dominic Ogburn & Harvey Grennan
    • Finding and managing your mortgage for dummies by Maureen Jordan (Australian edition)
    • House hunting : a consumer’s guide to buying a home in Australia by Jerry Tyrrell
    • The Australian home buyer’s guide 2005 by Nicholas Humphrey
    • Fast-track your mortgage : save thousands and live the life you want by Lorraine Graham

Well, we’re only halfway through the buying process and I’m sure there would be other things we would be learning along the way. Any other good tips? Care to share them?

Published in: on September 29, 2005 at 12:07 pm  Comments (3)  

Noooooo!

Stupid Microsoft Reader! I installed the Pocket PC version of Microsoft Reader on my iPaq Pocket PC a few minutes ago. I wanted to have an eBook reader on my Pocket PC and I was deciding between Microsoft Reader and eReader (formerly Palm Reader). In the end, I chose Microsoft Reader.

Silly me. I thought that installing Microsoft Reader on a Microsoft Windows-run Pocket PC would be a better choice instead of installing a competitor’s eBook reader. Well, I installed it on my Pocket PC. Afterwards, the program wanted me to (soft) reset the Pocket PC so that it could finish installing the new program.

A soft reset is equivalent to rebooting a PC. There is another form of reset on a Pocket PC called a hard reset. What it does is basically wipe clean the Pocket PC’s memory and restore its factory defaults kind of like reformatting your PC’s hard disk. To perform a hard reset on a Pocket PC, you need to press two different buttons simultaneously while performing a soft reset.

I performed the soft reset as asked by the new program. The Pocket PC’s screen went black as expected while it resets. Then when the screen came back on, it was asking me to calibrate the stylus digitizer. The first time I saw this screen was when I started up my Pocket PC for the very first time. I suddenly had a bad feeling right then.

After I finished re-calibrating the Pocket PC and entering details like what time it was, I quickly checked to see the state of the memory. And to my horror, the Pocket PC had inexplicably hard-reset itself! All my installed programs, lost!

Also frustrating is the fact that I hadn’t backed up the Pocket PC for a while now and my back up is in the office. I hope that I’ll be able to restore my programs tomorrow.

Well, I certainly regretted installing Microsoft Reader. I wish I had installed eReader instead.

Published in: on September 28, 2005 at 11:29 pm  Leave a Comment  

Sky High

Will Stronghold is about to start his freshman year in Sky High, a high school for gifted individuals with extraordinary powers. Will, being the only child of the legendary super couple Commander and Jetstream, looks like he’d breeze right through to “heroes” class and won’t have to worry about getting assigned to the “hero support” (sidekick) career path. There’s just one little hitch — he doesn’t seem to have any powers! What’s he to do and how does he tell his eager and enthusiastic father that his dream of a Stronghold 3 may never come to pass? Add to that the angst of teenage love relationships, dealing with a bully with super speed and a rebel with a grudge and suddenly Will’s high school life doesn’t seem to be too rosy after all.

We went to watch Sky High yesterday afternoon as a break from several week’s routine of house inspections and were horrified to find that the movie theatre was teeming with pre-teen kids with a few smattering of adults with younger kids. I started ribbing Gj that we’re the only couple there who doesn’t have any kids when another couple sat right in front of us – kids at heart just like us? The man in front was quite tall and Gj now has to look over the side to see the screen, too bad that seats were assigned and there doesn’t seem to be a better spot for us to transfer in. Tough luck.

We were afraid that the movie may get too cheesy as most movies geared for kids are but was pleasantly surprised that it could be a fun movie for adults as well. Steven Strait (as fire-shooting Warren Peace) and Danielle Panabaker (as flora-controlling Layla) were my favourites and gave great “hero support” to Michael Angarano’s Will Stronghold. Some bits of the movie were predictable and Kurt Russell as the costumed Commander cracks me up but it was fun and entertaining overall. :d

Published in: on September 26, 2005 at 5:48 pm  Leave a Comment  

The Search Is Over

After several weeks of house-hunting, we’ve finally committed to a house. We’ve looked for houses at the Eastern and Southeastern suburbs but found that there weren’t a lot of houses there that we liked. Actually, there were but they were either just too expensive or too far from the city. However, we found houses we liked when we headed to the Western suburbs and at more affordable prices to boot.

We decided to just keep our searching in the suburb of Werribee which is about 40 minutes’ drive away via the Princes Freeway from the city. But, it seems like Werribee isn’t such a popular choice of a suburb for some people. Perhaps people thought that it was a bit far from the city but these same people would live just as far from the city except they lived out East instead. So I guess what they were really just saying was that they preferred the East better than the West.

Others also mentioned that Werribee smells of sewerage because apparently, there was a time when the sewerage from the city, which flows to the West, ran above ground and its foul smell travelled all the way to the residential areas. Well, according to friends of mine who live there, there is no such problem in Werribee. One of them, in fact, told me that the sewerage now runs below ground so the stink of the sewerage should not be smelled in the open air.

Anyway, last week, Raquel and I narrowed our search down to two houses in Werribee. They are of similar build and similarly priced. Actually, these houses were in the same neighborhood and just a few blocks apart from each other. Last weekend, we inspected both houses for a second time to help us decide which house to go for.

For privacy reasons, I do not want to reveal the actual locations of these houses on the blog but to help me tell this story, I’ll designate the two houses as the Close house (because it’s at the end of a no-through road) and the Corner house (because it’s on a corner lot).

Now, here are the features of both houses: three bedrooms, two bathrooms (one ensuite), enclosed double garage on remote, and ducted heating. The Close house has a large paved pergola out back while the Corner house had an unmowed and unworked back yard. But, the Corner house had these going for it: evaporative cooling (centralised air conditioning), full alarm system, water filtration system, a bigger living area and block allotment, and a dishwasher.

However, after a lot of hard thinking, we still chose to make an offer to the Close house even if the Corner house seemed to have lots of things going for it on paper. The thing is, the Close house seemed to be better maintained by the owner. It was also nearer to public transportation. It was at the end of the road so we don’t have to worry about cars passing by in front of the car (would be a concern when we have children in the future). It also was a smaller house which meant less space to clean up (can’t afford househelp in Australia, unlike in the Philippines).

Even though we’ve first gazed upon the Close house back in August, it took us all this time to finally make an offer for it. Before I go on, for privacy reasons again, I do not want to reveal the price of the house so we’ll just go with some hypothetical numbers for illustration purposes only. Let’s say the house was advertised as being sold for $115 to $129 (an exaggeratively low amount, I know). I started negotiations by offering to buy the house for $100 last Tuesday.

The realestate agent, who I’ll just refer to as Smith from here on in said that the owner wouldn’t be willing to sell the house at such a low offer. He added that the owner is only interested if it is in the range advertised for the house. Sure, I’m willing to buy the house even at $120 (our original house budget was almost almost twice that actually since we thought we’d be buying in an Eastern suburb) but buying the house for cheaper was certainly not an unfavourable outcome. So I offered to buy the house for $110 instead.

Smith said he’ll pass on the offer to the owner. Now we’re cooking. Later in the day, he called back to say that the owner wanted $120 for the house. Well, at least it was down from $129. Not wanting to seem very keen on the house, I told Smith we’ll think about it and give him a call the next day.

At this point, we were starting to think that maybe we could get the Corner house (the other house) for cheaper since its price range was $110 to $130 (emphasis on the $110 lower end of the price range compared to the Close house’s $115). That night, we really considered everything again but we still ended up liking the Close house better.

So, the following day, I offered to buy at $115. Smith said he’ll pass on the offer back to the owner, as expected. At this stage though, Smith asked us if we were willing to come down over to Werribee to put the offer in writing (to make it more official) and to make a holding deposit of $500 (literal $500 and not the hypothetical amount I was using in the negotiating story).

I told him that if I did put it in writing, I want the contract to specify that it was subject to finance and a favourable building inspection. He also asked me what is the settlement period. I told him I wanted 45 days. That is, in 45 days, I become the new owner of the house and the owner has already vacated the property. He said that the owner would like 60 days and I agreed to it.

Anyway, he called up later to say the owner wouldn’t sell the house for less than $118. Hmm. At this time, Raquel and I were of the mind that the owner would accept the $115 so we were a bit disappointed that the owner wanted more. I told Smith that we’ll have to think about it some more. Later that night, we decided that $118 was good enough and that we’re going to accept the counter-offer.

The next day though, I was very busy at work so I wasn’t able to call Smith early that day. It wasn’t much of a problem because Smith gave me a call anyway. He asked me what we thought of the $118 offer. At that moment, I thought that maybe I could negotiate a bit more off the price one last time even though we were perfectly willing to go with $118. I asked him if the owner would be willing to sell for $117. Also, I re-negotiated the settlement period back down to 45 days. I reasoned to him that we wanted to move in as soon as possible so that we’d pay one less month’s worth of rent for our current apartment.

At this stage, we also got a conveyancer to look over the Section 32 for the property. Okay, let me just explain that a bit for my non-Aussie readers. A conveyancer is defined by Wikipedia as follows:

A lawyer who deals with the legal aspect of buying and selling real property. A conveyancer can also be (but need not be) a Solicitor, Licensed Conveyancer, or a Fellow of the Institute of Legal Executives.

And the Section 32, also called a Vendor’s Statement, contains documents relevant to the property being sold. It is described in better detail at the Lawyers Real Estate website.

In the end, our conveyancer gave us the go-ahead and we got the house for $117 and with a settlement period of 45 days on the day we put it in writing, as it were. That was just this weekend. Smith had asked us to come in at 10 am to do the paperwork. By 11 am, we were done.

Smith was very helpful in outlining what was involved in buying the house. He walked us through the property’s Section 32 and what would be included with the property (like the carpets and the kitchen sink, for example). He told us that the initial deposit was 10% of the agreed-upon selling price less the $50o holding deposit. The remainder of the cost will be payable on the settlement day.

It was another chapter in my life. It was the first time we bought our own home. It was an odd feeling. It was the same feeling I had when we bought our first-ever car a couple of years ago in Canberra. I don’t know how to describe the feeling except that it sort of felt good.

Anyway, later that afternoon, we brought the Contract Note to our mortgage broker at Aussie Home Loans to get the bank loan process started. There was just a little drama about not getting the discounted interest rate for the loan because we bought the house lower than originally expected. But that’s all resolved now.

And now, we can look forward to a few weekends of doing whatever we want now that we don’t need to go hunt for houses. Whew.

Published in: on September 25, 2005 at 11:04 pm  Comments (5)  

Haigh’s Chocolates

Haigh's Dark Connoisseurs box
Gj and I recently discovered the wonders of Haigh’s Chocolates and have been getting our supply of chocolate frogs and pastilles from their shop in the Block arcade. I’ve been eyeing their box of assorted dark chocolates since our first visit but the $16.80 price tag always puts me off in the end. Well, not today. I figured I might as well try one and be done with it, see if I like it or not.

The 200g cardboard box contains 14 chocolates inside with a little catalogue of the different chocolates that might have been included in the box. Yes, that’s correct, not every dark chocolate in their selection is included in the box so I guess Forrest Gump’s saying about never knowing what you get in a box of chocolates really holds true. Half the fun was actually from identifying the ones included in the box, the other half is just old-fashioned savouring of the goods.

Published in: on September 22, 2005 at 10:01 pm  Comments (5)  

Celebrity Sighting

Another reason why I like being in Melbourne (or in Sydney) is because there’s always that off-chance that we’ll bump into a popular person on the street. Well, earlier, that was what almost happened literally. Raquel and I were walking along Flinders Lane in the city when suddenly out from an alley was Rob Schneider. He’s in town to promote his movie: Deuce Bigalow: European Gigolo.

The first thing we noticed that he wasn’t a tall person. I may even be taller than him and I don’t consider myself tall. Raquel did note that he looked exactly how he looks in the movies. He was being followed by several giggling girls wanting his autograph.

Not wanting to be like one of the fan-girls there, we just let him past us as if he was just your typical Joe on the street. Well, several feet of walking later, I sort of regretted not even taking a photo of him on my mobile’s in-built camera at the very least. I mean, it’s not everyday I almost bump into a Hollywood actor, even though he’s not exactly Brad Pitt.

Published in: on September 21, 2005 at 12:44 pm  Comments (3)  

Harry Potter, the Half-Blood Prince and Me

Warning: If you haven’t read or finished reading Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, I suggest you stop reading this post now as it may contain spoilers.

At last, I finished reading the latest installment of the Harry Potter series: Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince by JK Rowling. No more fear of spoilers from other people. Unfrotunately though, thanks to the spoiler I’ve read in my brother’s blog, the latest book’s ending wasn’t much of a surprise for me.

Even before I started reading the book, I was already aware that Rowling intended for one of the main characters to die in Harry Potter’s latest outing. That’s okay, I thought, because I didn’t know who it was going to be. But after my brother’s spoiler, I couldn’t even think of anybody else who might be killed except the person he named. Near the end, it could’ve been anybody still, but since I know who’s going to die, I only half-heartedly hoped that somebody else dies. In the end, I didn’t feel too sad for that character’s death because I was sort of prepared for it. Stupid spoiler.

Anyway, enough whinging about the spoilers. I certainly can’t wait for the last book. And when it does come out, I promise to be one of the first people to read it. Then maybe I could be the one dishing out the spoilers.

Published in: on September 19, 2005 at 11:14 pm  Comments (2)  

They Just Won’t Let Go

A couple of months ago, we decided to switch from 3 Mobile to another mobile phone company. We just felt that we would save some money if we move to another provider like Virgin Mobile. We originally went with 3 only because they have this feature where we could make free 10-minute calls to one another provided we’re both using 3 mobiles.

However, this feature was only really useful when we worked at two different workplaces. Now that we work in the same office, we almost never needed to use our phones to talk to each other. We only use it now for sending text messages and calling up friends and family. Since most of them aren’t with 3, we’re not really getting any freebies. In fact, we end up paying more each month than if we just switch to another mobile company that has cheaper text and call rates overall.

We’re now with another mobile company and I no longer need to keep my 3 mobile activated. So I called up 3 Care (3 Mobile’s customer care people) to have the phone disconnected last week. Instead of getting it done, the operator practically begged that I look for another person to whom I could just transfer my phone to. I wasn’t really in a big rush so I said I’ll try.

Of course, I didn’t really. I mean, most of my friends already have mobiles. And to friends who still don’t have a mobile, I feel that they’ll be better off with another mobile service anyway.

So today, I called up 3 Care again promising myself to be more adamant in getting the service cancelled. Again, the operator tried to convince me to have the phone passed on to a friend. I told him that I already tried (not) and I wanted the phone disconnected. He said he’ll look at my account details. Right after that, he reminded me again that it will be a lot easier if I just transfer the phone over to somebody else. I reiterated that I don’t have anybody to pass the phone to.

He placed me on hold while he checks on my account balance. He came back saying that I had indeed paid for the handset repayments. He then reminded me yet again that I could just transfer the phone to somebody else. I said no. He asked me why I wanted to leave 3 Mobile. I gave him my reasons.

I was placed on hold while he talk to his supervisor. He came back and asked (again!) why I wanted to leave 3 Mobile. I gave him my reasons yet again. He asked what about 3 Mobile I didn’t like (which was just another way to ask why I wanted to leave them).

After that, he told me that he was going to put me on hold again and transfer me to their accounts personnel. The accounts operator confirmed that I indeed wanted to cancel my account. I said, yes. Then she started telling me that I could transfer my phone to a friend instead of having it disconnected.

What the hell is wrong with these people?! I wanted it disconnected. End of story.

I politely told her that I was already “advised” by two different 3 Care operators of this and that I wasn’t able to find anybody to transfer the phone to. Then she asked why would I want to leave 3 Mobile. Well, their customer care is certainly one reason why! Although I didn’t tell her that.

Lastly, she asked if I wanted to disconnect my 3 mobile phone. I remember saying yes to this question earlier. In fact, it was the reason why I was talking to her. At last, she said that the phone will be disconnected in 30 minutes and that I’ll be getting a note in the mail confirming that I had indeed cancelled my 3 account.

Whew! I thought I’d never get the phone disconnected. The entire phone conversation took about half an hour. I just hope the people in the office didn’t mind that I was on the phone for that long. Anyway, I’m just glad that was all over with. And now, I’m glad I’m no longer with 3.

Published in: on September 12, 2005 at 11:11 pm  Comments (5)