There are many different ways to celebrate Christmas, but dropping $5,000 on a new sewer line isn't one of them.
Our house was 50+ years old and building standards had come a long way during that time. We had updated the HVAC, windows and insulation. We had installed a new drainage system. The landscaping had never looked better. There was one little flaw and that was the sewer pipe.
The pipe went out of the house almost center of the back wall, where all the pipes merged in the unfinished basement. The handy-man came over with his sewer snake to break up the clog and we were not enthused to hear that the pipe had collapsed and the line was now filled with mud.
To make matters worse, there was a very large concrete slab patio had been twice-poured over top of the line and now there was a 16' deep deck built over top of that. In essence, there was absolutely no way to replace the line; it would have to be rerouted.
The new line would still tie together at the spot where it previously exiteded the building, but it would route down the rear wall, out the side of the house and through the back yard to tie into the sewer main at the back edge of the property. In other words, kiss all the work put into the yard and landscaping good bye, because the backhoe has to get in here somehow.
Two days later, we were never so happy to be able to flush a toilet as we were that day. It put a bit of a damper on the bank account during the holidays, but not having working plumbing at that time would have been worse.