Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Knowing When to DIY and When to Hire a Pro For Home Improvement Projects

Knowing When to DIY and When to Hire a Pro For Home Improvement Projects

By Katherine Oakes

There are many home improvement projects that any devoted and crafty homeowner can tackle on their own without the help of a professional. Small updates can certainly go a long way, but at Modernize, we also know that the lure of tackling a bigger and better DIY project can distract us from the inherent risks or dangers that come along with it. So before you go making those changes and get your serious DIY game face on, consider these few things first to ensure you are the right person for the job. In order to help you get started safely, we’ve outlined a few key things to consider so that you know whether or not to DIY.

When to DIY

You have the time: We know how hard of a weekend warrior you are, but there is only so much that can get done within those 48 hours. Go through all of the necessary steps beforehand so that you don’t find yourself stressed and strapped for time in the middle of your project. For instance, replacing all the cabinets in your kitchen probably won’t get done by Sunday night if you’ve only ever screwed in a lightbulb. So be realistic and set yourself up for success by laying out a timeline for your DIY project first.

You have the resources: For the times when a professional really comes in handy is when they are already sufficiently equipped with the appropriate tools and maybe even a team—no matter how small—to help them get the job done. Face it, wouldn’t it be a whole heckuva lot better not to have to run to the store when you realize you’re missing a set of drill bits that might never be used again? The answer is yes—it would.

You have the knowledge and skills: No matter how expertly you’ve installed curtain rods or even put up that stunning beadboard in the bathroom, it’s important to know whether or not you have the right kind of knowledge and skills to do a more complicated home improvement job. Weigh out the pros and cons of the project before getting started and be honest with yourself about whether or not this a challenge you can handle or if you should reach for the phone instead.

When to Call a Pro

If it risks your safety or could be a health hazard: A tell tale sign that you are in waaay over your head is if your DIY risks your safety and well-being. Anything that involves major electrical lines or plumbing work, or potentially coming into contact with chemicals, substances, and materials like insulation or mold and asbestos should be avoided unless you know how to handle it. If you know how to do some basic electrical work but don’t have any clue about pipes and other plumbing issues, then steer clear and call for help. Knowing your limits could save your life or at least a few bucks in damage.

If your town has codes in place to protect you: If you are making changes to your home, like knocking down a wall or beam to open a room up, then you might find out you need a permit to do the work first. This is the most obvious sign that you need to hire a professional and that the work you’re doing is way too dangerous to do solo. It is often the case that certain elements are there for structural purposes or even hosts to a hotbed of electrical wires and major plumbing wires and the need for a permit is in place to protect you and your home. In this situation, call a contractor or handyman for help.

If the worst-case scenario is too severe: As well-intentioned as you are, there are certain scenarios in which the worst possible outcome involves unrepairable damage to either you or your home, or both, that are simply not worth doing. A kitchen or bathroom remodel, installing siding, roofing, or even windows are projects worth calling a professional to do so that you don’t have to spend more time and money fixing the newer and even worse issue down the road. 

What are some of your remodeling or home improvement stories? What kind of projects are you working on now? Let us know down below!

This article was written by a third-party company who is not affiliated with Bid4Assets, Inc.  Bid4Assets has not evaluated or endorsed the content in this article. To get more great home tips from Modernize click the link below.