Ceiling FanWhen we built the Eagle Mountain house in 2003, we chose to put fans in most of the less formal main living areas for comfort. Each of the seven bedrooms had a fan, as did the family room and “the canyon.” (This was a three story high area adjacent to the family room that had balconies from the bedrooms and the playroom overlooking it.) The office had four more.

For the family room, the canyon, and the master bedroom, we splurged on expensive, special-order fans from a lighting store. For the other spaces we simply scoured Home Depot and Lowe's and online sources. We found some great matches for the kids' themed bedrooms and very utilitarian fans for the office.

Before we moved in, the canyon fan had failed and had to be replaced. Over the course of our five years in the home, the only fans we had trouble with were the three, expensive “high-quality” fans. Oh, and Samson's fan wouldn't change speed after he swung from the chain and jammed it. Which I don't particularly blame on a manufacturing defect.

We learned our lesson. This time around we are going to get all the fans and lighting we can from online retailers and local home improvement stores. Sometimes you can even find a Lowes Coupon or two online. From experience we know we'll save a bundle and the quality will be at least as good as the more expensive models.