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Home Investment: When to DIY vs Hiring a Professional

With the popularity of shows on HGTV and the DIY network, remodeling your home looks easy and like a fun and adventurous project. Before your start renovating your home, which is one of your most important personal investments, here’s a simple way to determine if you should DIY (Do It Yourself) or hire a remodeling professional.

Typical DIY Upgrades and Improvements

  • Painting Walls & Cabinets: Painting isn’t always fast and easy, but it’s a simple way to update a room. You can also add some brightness to your bathroom or kitchen cabinets by painting them – but be sure to remove the doors from the hinges.
  • Fixtures/Mirrors/Accessories: Some of the simplest improvements that also look the best are adding accessories or changing out fixtures. Redecorating a room can transform a space without a pricey remodel and new cabinet door pulls and knobs can also update a room. New mirrors are also a way to improve a bathroom.
  • Laminate Flooring: Laminate floors are one of the few flooring types that are relatively easy to install. If you’re handy with a saw and have a full day to dedicate to the room that needs new flooring, this one might save you a lot of money.
  • Built in Space: Building entertainment centers and built-in cabinets is one way to dramatically enhance a room without having to spend a lot of money on your remodeling project.

Upgrades Best Left to a Professional

  • Electrical and Plumbing: Some plumbing jobs just might take a few minutes of your time if you know what parts you need and how to turn off the water supply. But if you look at the job and don’t know which supplies are need and how you can fix it, call a plumber. The same applies to electrical work. It’s never a good idea to DIY an electrical project – besides the danger, there’s also codes and regulations you need to follow.
  • Cabinets/Countertop/Flooring Installs: Installing new cabinets, countertops or flooring is generally complicated. Consulting with a pro is a smart move if you feel it’s beyond your capabilities.
  • Structural Changes: Taking out walls, repairing the foundation or doing any other structural changes is not wise when you’re not a licensed contractor.
  • Hazards: Anything that involved a hazardous situation like mold, lead paint, etc. is a major concern that’s best left to the pros.

So before you knock out a wall to make your living space more open concept – stop and think if it would be the best for your biggest investment if you took a sledgehammer to your drywall.