We’ve all watched those home improvement shows and thought, “I can do that!” But can we really? Home improvement, whether it’s redoing your kitchen or adding new window shutters to your Elk Grove, CA home, isn’t as simple or as easy as it looks. So, before you jump into a big DIY project, you need to seriously consider whether or not you should leave it to the professionals.
When deciding if you should DIY or hire a contractor, consider these factors cost vs. time and risk vs. reward. While there are some projects you can do yourself; you can’t forget that it will take you longer than it would take a professional. And your time is valuable. Consider the time it will take to learn how to do the task and then actually complete it, and decide if paying a professional will be worth it.
Similarly, some jobs are faster and more affordable to DIY, but they come with a much higher risk if you fail. There are also jobs that are safe and affordable, but they will take months for you to do all by yourself. Ask yourself, is it worth the risk, time, and money to DIY?
If you’ve thought through those factors and still aren’t sure, here are some examples that might help guide you:
- Interior Paint = DIY – Painting takes a long time and is messy, but it’s completely doable for the average homeowner. Just be sure to take your time, protect your floors and furniture, and always use painter’s tape.
- Electrical = Pros – If you’re not a trained electrician, don’t even think about trying to work on the electrical in your house. It’s incredibly dangerous to mess with the wiring, and you could even cause major issues that will lead to expensive fixes.
- Hardware = DIY – Simple hardware upgrades like doorknobs, light fixtures, drawers, and faucets are easy to do, cheap, and great use of your DIY time.
- Plumbing and Gas = Pros – Like electrical work, plumbing and gas should always be left to the professionals as they can be very dangerous and expensive if not done correctly.
- Installing Shelves = DIY – If you can work a drill and measuring tape, you can install shelves. Don’t be afraid to read tips or watch tutorials for additional guidance.
- Windows and Exterior Treatments = Pros – While replacing windows or changing out your exterior window treatments, like shutters, may seem simple, it’s actually very complex. This is especially true if you have an older home or specialty windows. Hire a professional with experience in windows or window treatments to make sure your home is energy efficient, safe, and clean.
At the end of the day, the question of whether or not to DIY is a personal one. Only you truly know your own skills, time, and capabilities. But remember, there is no shame in hiring someone to make sure the job is done right the first time.