Do It Yourselfers everywhere rejoice at the notion of taking on new challenges and fixing things all by themselves. It is a part of the great human spirit to try something new and fix things on our own, but is there a line where trying may not be enough to actually complete the task. We know you are empowered by your DIY nature, but please, know when to call on someone else.
Here are a few tips on how to know when to hire a handyman and when to DIY your projects.
Can You Find Instruction for the Project?
Certain tasks around the home are no brainers. They require little information in order to complete the task, but others may require a little help from the internet, DIY magazines, or advice directly from a professional in that area. All DIYers have their preferred informational resources and it is important to check all of them. When searching on the internet for possible information, ensure that it is resourced from a credible source. It can be relatively easy to manipulate pictures or a video to make it look like the project was a success when, in fact, it might have been a complete failure. Online information can be great, but it can also lead you down a very negative path, so only find online sources you can trust in, not just the ones that pop up on a search first.
DIY magazines are excellent resources for all DIYers. They provide credible information backed by actual journalistic integrity. In most DIY magazines, each project has been tried and tested, so these can be a much more effective resource to put your trust in. If you have yet to subscribe to a DIY magazine or two, be sure to check one out if you are a serious DIYer. Professional opinions and advice is worth its weight in gold, especially when it comes to DIY projects. However, the drawback to this is most professionals do not want to give out free advice for obvious reasons, but in the case of small repairs or those the professional would be unable to charge big bucks for, you might be able to get some information out of them. It does not hurt to ask.
What Are the Expectations of the Project?
Among the biggest things to consider when thinking of a DIY project is the final outcome of it. DIYers are not experts and sometimes, the final result of a project may be functional, but not ideal. In areas where the final project might be hidden from view, a DIYer can get away with more. However, when the final project will be on display for all to see, you may want to call in a professional. For those who want a truly professional appearance to the project, an expert is generally the best solution, but adequate DIYers can sometimes pull off remarkably professional looking projects depending on the level of effort they put into the project. Know your expertise and your expectations for each DIY project you undertake.
What Does Your Insurance Cover?
DIYers should certainly praised for their efforts at taking on a variety of tasks. In some areas, DIYers can build entire homes without hiring out for a professional contractor and the results are amazing, but not every DIYer should take on an entire home building project or similar projects around the home. Homeowners insurance, car insurance, boat and RV insurance are all there for a reason and when repairing one of these, you need to read your insurance policy very closely and know local laws for where you live.
Depending on what type of insurance you have and how much it covers, you can make or break your finances. For example, if you are repairing your roof, just replacing a few shingles, and come across a weak spot on the roof in which you fall through, your homeowners insurance agent will have some questions for you. The first will likely be, why didn’t you call a professional roofer. Insurance is available to help with repairs, but insurance companies will look for every possible loop hole to get out of paying on a claim, so be sure to know your policy and abide by it to keep from having to pay an enormous repair bill in the end.
Break Apart Larger Projects
It is perfectly fine to take on large home repairs even if you are not a licensed contractor as long as your insurance policy is fine with it. We all need to expand our horizons and simply try something new on occasion, but remember, you do not have to take on the whole project by yourself. The difference between a contractor and a DIYer is the contractor utilizes various parts of their team for different tasks. No single contractor generally does an entire home renovation or build project on their own. They have certain people in certain areas that specialize in specific things.
You can use this notion with your DIY projects. Consider breaking up a large project into smaller jobs. For instance, you may want to completely renovate an entire room of your home. Consider the whole room broken up into parts. You will have to consider using a storage unit to store items in the room, the floor, ceiling, electrical work, painting, refinishing, and in some larger renovations, you might even have to consider alterations to the roof system. Make a list first. Some things you can take on while others you may have to delegate to a contractor. Approaching the project in this manner will allow you to save money, but also have a professional available for certain aspects.
Being a DIYer is a lot of fun and even when you are not a professional, your DIY spirit can allow you to do amazing things. Never shy away from a project for fear of failure, but always consider the above thoughts to ensure you do not end up making more of a project for yourself or a contractor later down the line.