When it comes to home renovation, you may be tempted to tackle quite a few projects yourself. Low budget is the first to tempt you and if DIY can help you save, you should, by all means, do it as long as you know how to select the right tasks.
For and against DIY
You should consider DIY if a task is something you have successfully done before and if it is small enough to be learnt quickly from a YouTube video, if you are a patient and a detailed person or happy to live with imperfections, if you enjoy DIY, if you are not tied to a deadline and have plenty of time to work on a project. You do not want to leave things unfinished or hurt yourself. If the renovation requires licensed work and permits, you are better off hiring a pro.
Knocking a wall down sounds like an easy job, doesn’t it? Well, it doesn’t have to be. First of all, you need to be aware of what you can demolish and what you should not touch. Make sure that the wall you are demolishing is not a load-bearing one. Not to mention the fact that you need to consult the blueprints in order to make sure you do not hit any of the house’s plumbing or wiring. Also, as walls can be stubborn, you should resist the urge to use more force and be patient instead. Too much force could cause damage to the parts of structure you intended to keep. Furthermore, any work done on structural walls such as making an opening for a new door should definitely be done by a pro. The same goes for any homes that have asbestos which needs to be disposed of with care.
As electricity can be dangerous, meddling with any of it should be avoided. However, preferably if you are an experienced DIY enthusiast, you can replace light switches and light fixtures, just make sure you switch off electricity in the entire house while you are doing it. When it comes to any other wiring, you should call a pro due to the safety risks, risks of not having the job done properly, and potential licensing required to get the right permits.
Even though you may have seen it done thousands of times, plumbing is best left to professionals. Poor plumbing jobs can cause a need for more repairs. The consequences may go even further, if the plumbing is not done correctly you risk hidden leaks which can cause structural damage to the house and a perfect ground for mold and pest infestations. Similarly to electrical wiring, plumbing may also require licensed work by law.
Flooring and tiling
If your preferred type of flooring is laminate, this is something you shouldn’t have trouble doing on your own if you follow the instructions carefully. If you have trouble measuring the floor correctly which is essential, you should consult the supplier to help you with instructions. On the other hand, laying a hardwood floor requires more skill and is best left to professionals. The same goes for tiling, if you have the right equipment required, you shouldn’t have trouble doing it until you come to corners which is more demanding and requires great precision.
Roofing and bricklaying
These two should equally be left to professionals. Apart from the safety risks and loss of aesthetic value, you may risk causing structural damage and you will end up having to hire contractors to repair it. If you are in the mood to help and save, you can do manual labor and work closely with the pros to add an extra pair of hands and speed up the process.
Painting is generally a beginner level DIY project you should do yourself. Don’t forget the importance of prep work as it may make a huge difference in the final result. When it comes to exterior painting, you could say that it is more important and certainly more difficult so you should leave it to professional painters. It is very important that the job is done correctly as it needs to last for several years despite the elements it is exposed to. If you own an old house and you suspect that lead-based paint may have been used, hire certified home painters as they will know how to treat it without exposing you or your family to risk.
DIY is an excellent way to feel like a part of your home and spend time with your family and friends while being productive. However, before you opt for a DIY solution, make sure you have the potential of doing the job right, otherwise, for every penny you save with DIY, you will spend 3 on repairs.