Exhaust: Homeless - Racer X Online


I’m currently living at my in-laws. Over the weekend, I was a resident of Southwick, Massachusetts. I don’t have a real address anymore because I sold my house, and haven’t quite yet closed on a new one.

Do you know what that means? I’m homeless saving money!

Considering I have a wife and two young children the homeless option doesn’t seem like the best, but I was born and raised to be cheap, trained at the hands of the master, Brian “Cheap Bastard” Weigandt. My dad was not a champion racer or master mechanic like most dads you read about on this site, but a master of not spending money. That’s it.

I will eventually have a new house, and the very idea of that does fly in the face of my cheaper is better philosophies. But look, I’m a family man and I can only go so far, so long. I can’t live completely outside of societies boundaries, which is why I have to shave once a week (Saturday morning) to appear clean cut on NBCSN. Shaving daily is a waste of razor money.

Where was I? New house. I’ve learned the hard way you have to give your family what it wants. The schools connected to my old neighborhood weren’t good, and the wife wasn’t happy about that. We got my daughter into a charter school (please note that charter schools are FREE for some reason that I still don’t understand, but definitely won’t argue with) but it required two hours of commuting each day. So each day during those commutes, with the gas and car wear that comes with it, we had plenty of time to think about living in a different neighborhood where we could just put our daughter on the school bus for FREE. Also, something something about investing in your kid’s education blah, blah, blah. I dunno. We had to move.

We don't have many photos of Weege moving, so here's a cool shot of the start at Southwick.
We don't have many photos of Weege moving, so here's a cool shot of the start at Southwick. Rich Shepherd

When you’re cheap, you don’t just run by the motto less is more, but also harder is better. If things come easy, you’re probably paying for the luxury of convenience. This is why I always buy cars with manual transmissions.

So if I was going to move, I was going to scheme my ass off to save some dough. My first move was to try renting my old house for a year, using the monthly profit to essentially buy some FREE upgrades so I could sell it for more money next year. I reached out to some potential renters, such as local racer Phil Nicoletti. Now, I knew negotiating with Phil would be difficult because he’s also cheap, Matthes once held a “cheap off” podcast between us where we battled and battled until we realized we both shop at the same Goodwill store. But maybe I could offer Phil an offer he couldn’t refuse?

No. Phil can refuse ALL offers. I was cutting to the bone and banking on my increased profits from next year’s sale, but he still wouldn’t bite, even after we tried to convince the JGR team to kick in some money and use the house whenever West Coasters like Weston Peick come to town and need a place to stay.

My last play was to convince everyone that if we put Phil in there and matched him with the right roommate we could create a reality show and make some money. Maybe Peick, Kyle Cunningham or my dad, who could for a cheap alliance with Phil and try to ruin the landlord, but then I realized that would be to my own demerit.

Alas, the house went on the market.

But I pulled a fast one in the new home community. We made an offer on one house, a fairly inexpensive one, and then waited through most of the 60-day closing period. Within that time, the prices on some of the more expensive houses dropped. So then we switched houses! Saved about $10,000 over what I would have paid a month earlier.

The only rub was that we sold the old house to an investment company that will rent it out. This really pissed off the neighbors, but it was necessary because of this disgusting construction water drainage pit the developer recently built behind the house. When I bought this house in 2011, we had nothing but woods behind us, which I used to create a sweet turn track in my backyard. Then they mowed the woods down and built more houses, except behind us, where they built the drainage pond that scared off at least a dozen potential buyers. Hey, they’re lucky some dude isn’t back there on a loud dirt bike anymore!

Our move out date for the old house was coming, but we switched to the new ($10,000 less!) house so late that we were going to have to sell the old before we could move in to the new. This sucked … or did it?

See, there’s a lot of traveling going on in the summer time. I’m barely home just from covering races, plus there are all of these summer trips to the grandparents, and I had planned to bring the family for a full week in Portland, Oregon. Then I have another whole week at Loretta’s. Why actually pay for a house when you’re not living there?

Cooper Webb looked good in the sand. This has nothing to do with this week's column.
Cooper Webb looked good in the sand. This has nothing to do with this week's column. Rich Shepherd

I spent last week killing myself to get the old house empty so we could move out. Movers charge by the pound (don’t claim I’m not cheap for hiring movers. I have a family of four and a lot of furniture, this isn’t college days) so I had to figure out a way to stash anything heavy elsewhere. I rented a storage unit (first month, the only month I’ll need hopefully, for FREE). I stashed stuff at my in-laws. I stashed my dirt bike and gear and tools at my buddy Jonny Oler’s (JGR suspension man. My hope is he will look at my trashed old bike, and his OCD will prevent him from sleeping at night and he’ll perform free maintenance. One of the forks even leaks! Get on it Jonny!).

In the end I literally, yes LITERALLY moved a ton out of my house. Movers originally estimated we had 9000 pounds of stuff. The final tally was 7000. Yes, I moved a ton.

Last Friday at 9:00 a.m., we closed on the old house. Cars stuffed to the gills with stuff and kids. We signed the papers and then I got dropped off at the airport to go to Southwick. I stashed my Jeep, also stuffed, at the JGR shop so I could leave it parked for who knows how long.

My goal is to stretch this deal out to Monday, July 31, after my Washougal trip. Got a Sunday night red-eye so we won’t need a house until then—once I mix in Millville and some trips to the grandparents over the next few weeks. Nice. Imagine a vacation where you’re not actually paying a dime for anything at home?

I’m working on it.