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DIY OR DI-DON’T

There are tons of household projects to be done to update your home from simple to complex, small to large, there always seems to be room for improvement. Some jobs may seem small, but really need the attention of professionals. Other larger projects might seem daunting but really can be handled with you and your two hands. Your budget might determine where you seek professional help. But if you’re still hung up on which projects to handle and which to hand over, here’s a simple list.

Have At Thee, Fiend!

Painting is an obvious, easy place to start, even for the novice. Unless your ceilings are high and vaulted or you’re painting the exterior of your two-story home, you can do just about any paint job yourself. Grab the tools at your nearest home improvement store and get at it.

Hanging artwork, photos, or other decorative wall trappings. A level is the most advanced tool you’ll need outside of a hammer/drill and nails/screws. If you’ve got a particularly heavy item you’ll want to reinforce your walls with some anchors, but all these tools are available at any hardware store.

Demolition of your space when the reno begins is an area you can participate in. And really, what could be more therapeutic than taking a ten-pound sledge hammer to your ugly old walls? Not much. Just be careful where you hit (definitely don’t want to bust any pipes or take out wiring with your fast and loose swinging) and be ready for the soreness to set in the next day. Or prep yourself a lovely epsom bath before heading to bed. Consult your contractor if you decide to jump in on the fun.

Wainscotting is a very elegant addition to any room that adds texture and delight. It’s also very easy the put up yourself. You’ll even get to use that level that came in handy from hanging pictures to check the lines of your chair rail.

Flooring is an either or situation. Especially since the dawn of click-lock flooring, self-installation is easier than ever. It will be substantially more work than painting a room, but with careful attention to detail it can be done – and done well – by yourself. Laying tile is also a doable DIY, but more meticulous and time-consuming than click-lock floor. Carpet, on the other hand, is much better left to the pros. Feasible? Sure. But it’s more complex than the wall-to-wall “rug” idea you have fixed in your mind.

Leave It To The Pros

Plumbing, Electric, HVAC are all jobs that require certification on top of training. It’s one thing to change a light or plumbing fixture and replace the air filters in your vents. Those small jobs can in fact be handled by you. However, the last thing you want with any of these fields is to make a small problem bigger by taking on a job you’re not qualified to handle. Plumbing, electric and HVAC mishaps can blow your budget out of the water. Better safe than sorry in these situations.

Cabinetry and Countertops are also worth being done by the pros. The weight of the countertops themselves make it worth hiring a team. There’s also the option for customization with cabinets, providing you with extra storage space. Trust the pros. Hire the pros.

Foundation and Structure shouldn’t be a hard one to figure. Must have degree in Structural Engineering to ride this ride. Also, you would need a hydraulic pump and lifting shores – to name a few of the pieces of equipment you’ll need for such a job. … Just call a professional.

Go With Your Gut

When it comes down to it, the final call is yours to make. Your budget and your project will be the biggest determining factors; along with them will be your instinct. If you feel confident in your abilities and really need to pinch the pennies, go for it! But when it comes to utilities, structure, and meticulous craftsmanship, let me reiterate… Just call the professionals.

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