No cost to use mending spell?

Rules Questions

When you use mending or make whole, does this bypass the cost of repairing a magic item?

The rules seem clear.

Option 1. Have applicable craft feat, spend a lot of money and time.
Option 2. Use a 0th level spell(mending) a few times. :/ (10min per)

IF the magic item is destroyed

Option 1. Cant repair it, throw it away.
Option 2. Use a 2nd level spell(make whole) with x2 items caster level (10min per)

But option 1 is so bad it shouldn't even exist, which is making me feel like I am missing something.

I mean its almost like natural healing vs cure light wounds but I just don't see the point.

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1.) You have to have a Caster level equal to the object, which isn't always going to happen, and if they're destroyed their magic properties are completely gone. Also, pretty sure it's just a Craft: Item Type check and time, not money.

2.) Yes. So for any item over Caster Level 10, you're s#!~ outta luck.

Not above caster level 10, above caster 11-12, i can think of at least a couple ways to up your caster level beyond 20.

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