Do-it-yourself home projects are not only a great way to save a little money on labor costs, but they’re just fun. Seeing the work of your own two hands come to life is a uniquely rewarding experience. However, even the most advanced DIYers have their limits.
When it comes to home improvement, you want to make the most out of your investment. Making the most economical choices can be important, but the safety of your family and home should be the top priority. To be completely honest, some projects are too difficult, too dangerous, or simply too unpleasant to do yourself. Knowing your limits and when to call in a professional will save you time, money, and a whole lot of frustration.
What Can I DIY?
The limits of what DIY projects you have the best chance for success with depends entirely on your skill level. As a general rule, consider the project and if you’d be satisfied with imperfect work once it’s complete. You may be perfectly happy with a slightly askew curtain rod or some slight sloppiness in your paint job. You definitely won’t be happy if a mistake causes water leakage or risks the structural integrity of your home.
Take the time to research a project before you begin. You have a better chance of success if you know the steps to take rather than starting blind, plus you can develop a better idea if this is actually something you’re capable of— or if you even want to do it in the first place!
Projects such as the following are a great place to start:
Painting: A fresh color is the best way to spruce up your living space and also one of the easiest DIY projects to do. Even if you make a mistake, it can always be fixed by going over it with another coat of paint after it dries.
Hanging Small Fixtures: Light fixtures, towel racks, curtain rods, clothes racks, and so many other small fixtures can easily be replaced or added to your home. The fixture you want to install usually comes with step by step instructions and there’s also many instructional videos online.
Changing Door or Cabinet Hardware: While only a minor element, updating the hardware around your home can significantly freshen up its appearance. New knobs, pulls, and other items can be found at your local hardware store or purchased online.
Pressure Washing Your Deck or Driveway: It’s amazing how a good cleaning can completely transform the exterior of your home. A pressure washer is a great investment for any home and can easily be hooked up to an outdoor spigot.
Landscaping & Outdoor Projects: Building a fire pit, planting and maintaining a garden, or creating the perfect picnic area are well within most DIYers skillsets. If not, the skills are easy to learn and fun to see the results of!
When to Call a Professional
Is the improvement you want to make to your home outside the realm of DIY possibility? Ask yourself one vital question: Would a mistake have serious consequences to yourself, your family, or your home? If the answer is yes, then do not attempt the project yourself and call up a professional instead. Any reputable contractor should have insurance and warranties for their work to protect your home in case of any property damage.
Another reason to hire a pro is if a project needs a permit to complete. Major work including electrical or structural changes need to be approved by your town or city before it can begin. Not only do these jobs typically require specialized knowledge to begin with, but it’s likely that your contractor has a relationship with the building inspectors in your area and is already familiar with how to keep everything up to code.
Save any of these projects for the pros:
Additions or Major Remodels: Not only are these projects that require permits, but they are also very long and difficult tasks. Time is money. You may save a few bucks on labor, but you’ll lose all that and more with the time it takes you to see a huge project like this to completion.
Mold, Asbestos, and Lead Removal: Older homes were often built with materials that we now know are serious hazards to human health. Do not attempt to remove hazardous materials by yourself; professionals have the right equipment and training to handle these jobs safely for everyone.
Foundation Work: The stability of your home relies on a solid foundation. Finding a crack or other damage is scary stuff. It’s best to put your mind at ease by hiring a contractor who can guarantee to fix the problem and keep the structural integrity of your home intact.
Window Installation: It may seem easy to just pop a window out and put a new one in, but there’s much more to the story. It’s important to get the right fit and to make sure everything is properly insulated to protect your home’s heating and cooling bills from skyrocketing.
Roof Repairs: Roofing is a dangerous job with a high chance of injury if one is not prepared or experienced. Not only is there personal risk involved, but imperfect installation of roofing materials can leave your home exposed to the elements and cause leaking. Never underestimate the catastrophic damage that water can do to your home!
When getting started on your home renovation project, don’t take any unnecessary risks to your home or wellbeing. Call (866) 661-OAKS or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org to get in touch with trusted professionals today!