DIY House Projects: When to Call an Expert

    “Do it yourself” or DIY is a method of building or repairing things without the direct assistance of a professional. Everyone loves the accomplishment and self-fulfillment that comes from completing a difficult or gritty project by yourself.

    When it comes to home renovations, nothing’s better than rolling up your sleeves and knocking out a few minor improvements to save some money. But, some home improvement projects need to be saved for the experts–either because the project is too complex, or simply too dangerous.

    Here’s everything you need to know about DIY renovations to determine whether or not it’s worth getting your hands dirty.

    Is it worth your time?

    Getting wrapped up in a DIY renovation can be surprisingly time-consuming, so the foremost decision that needs to be made is if it’s worth your time. If it’s unrealistic for you to spend more time than available weekends on larger projects, it may be worth hiring someone else. Otherwise, long-term projects may sit incomplete for weeks or even months, resulting in cluttered or completely inaccessible parts of your home.

    It’s also worth noting that in addition to time, DIY projects can also consume a lot of energy. Sometimes your enthusiasm may diminish over time and you procrastinate the renovation, leaving a cluttered house. Overall, it can be a grueling process, so make sure you have both the time and the energy to finish a DIY improvement before you begin.

    Is it worth your money?

    Any homeowner’s first questions when starting a renovation will be, “how much money can I save, and how much can I do without an expert?” Most homeowners turn to DIY to avoid the labor costs involved with hiring a professional. So, depending on the scale of the project, it would be up to the discretion of the homeowner to consult an expert.

    The most significant cost involved in both DIY and professional aid is the material costs. Materials can add up a lot quicker than you’d think. One method of avoiding significant material costs is to purchase from antique stores, architectural salvage stores, and flea markets.

    Sometimes, however, it’s worth getting a professional simply for their pricing connections. A significant factor that often drives homeowners to seek professional help is the risk of redoing a project. Sometimes DIY projects can be risky and result in even more money being poured into the project. Additionally, some may wish to have an expert voice to guide them on quantities and sizes for construction.

    One helpful tool you can use to determine whether hiring a professional is worth your money (based on your personal circumstances) is online home improvement calculators. These calculators determine the cost of a professionally done project and compare it to the cost of doing it yourself.

    What can you do yourself and what should be saved for an Expert?

    First of all, before you begin any project, it’s crucial to make a list of all the improvements you plan to tackle. Afterward, you should consult an architect, contractor, or electrician depending on the type of renovation you had in mind. Creating a legitimate strategy can help you decide whether the project can be a DIY or is worth the cost of a professional intervention. Here are lists of common renovation projects, separated into the recommended DIY and professional categories:

    DIY
    Replacing or removing wallpaper
    Painting walls
    Painting, replacing or fixing doors
    Painting Cabinets
    Redecorating or hanging items on walls (cosmetics)
    Purchase materials

    Expert Assistance
    Roofing
    (Discretional) Replacing Cabinets
    Lighting repairs and demolition
    Anything with structural repairs
    Anything with plumbing or gas

    All in all, if you feel you’re handy or capable of finishing a minor DIY home improvement project, go for it! If you feel it’s too large in scale, time-consuming, or dangerous, consult a professional.

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