Do-It-Yourself (DIY) projects are so tempting, especially when we are stuck at home. There are plenty of projects that are great to take on by yourself, such as, refinishing an old dresser, switching out hardware on doorknobs and drawer pulls, or repainting any room. These are easy and do-able home improvement tasks for most people. However, if you take on too much in a DIY project, you may have to spend more time and money fixing your own mistakes. Keep reading to learn some rules to live by and follow.
The Weekend Rule
Before you start, consider the length of the project. How long is it really going to take you to do it all by yourself? If it is going to take more than a weekend, you may want to reconsider. Complicated projects, taking more than a couple of days over a weekend to complete, are often left unfinished. People go back to work, and the project loses its luster and starts collecting dust. You may end up having to hire a professional to come in and finish. Chances are they will find mistakes, costing you more money and stress in the end. Lengthy projects may be better left to the professionals.
Tiling and Flooring
Laying tile or any other type of flooring is another project that often has many hidden issues, requiring more skill and training than the average person and should be left to the experts. From the patterning of the tiles to grout work, you really need to know what you are doing. Grout can dry quickly, leaving sharp, jagged edges. You definitely do not want to step on unfinished grout with a possible unexpected visit to the emergency room. No matter what size the project, tile always needs to be cut to fit properly. This requires skill and special tools you likely do not own. An article in Architectural Digest recommends sticking to backsplash if you have the urge to tinker with tile but hire a professional to put in flooring.
Sledgehammers and Walls
Stop right now! If your project involves knocking out a wall with a sledgehammer, you need to seriously check yourself! Matt Barth, General Contractor and owner of Barth Construction in Vero Beach, Florida states, “Some walls are bearing walls, and you can severely damage the structure of your home even making it unsafe and possibly unlivable. You should always consult a General Contractor before trying to change the floor plan of your home.” This one should go without saying!
Projects Requiring Specialty Tools
If the project requires specialty tools, such as a reciprocating saw, for example, you would be better off hiring a sub-contractor to do the work for you. Those tools are expensive and not worth the money for a one-time use. The Spruce, a home improvement website, points out the reciprocating saw is heavy and can get out of control quickly, leading to error and injury. Specialty tools require skill, knowledge, and training to use. Yes, anyone can buy them at Home Depot, but that does not mean just anyone should.
When it comes to DIY projects, the simpler the better if you are not a professional in that field. Follow these basic rules, so a fun, simple DIY project does not end up costing you double…or a finger!
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