In an age where YouTube has a how-to video for just about every project you can imagine, you might be asking, “Why hire a professional for my home renovations when I can do it myself?” While it’s true that step-by-step guides to everything from tiling to plumbing are a dime a dozen, there are several key reasons why you should consider enlisting the help of a professional.
As Amy from Money Crashers puts it, if it could kill you, leave it to the pros. Is saving a few hundred dollars - or even a few thousand - worth putting your life at risk? The answer should be a no-brainer.
Saving money is the number one reason homeowners choose to tackle renovations on their own, and understandably so. Why pay someone thousands of dollars to install your hardwood floor when you can teach yourself to do it? However, a better question might be: why spend all your free time renovating when a pro can do it twice as quickly and stay out of your hair in the process? Renovations are a full-time job on top of your already busy schedule. What would take you six weeks to complete during evenings and weekends, a pro could finish in half that time while you’re out of the house.
We tend to only think about the money we’ll save by doing it ourselves. It’s important to put value on our time and well being, too. Hiring a professional means less stress, more free time, and peace of mind knowing the job’s been done right.
Mistakes made during the renovation process could end up costing you as much as it would have to hire a pro in the first place, or more depending on the damage. Even minor mistakes like small gaps in flooring will have to be repaired prior to selling your home if you want to get the best resale value.
Electrical and framing work are just two examples where knowledge of codes is critical. If your renovation does not meet the regulations, you’ll be paying a pretty penny to get it fixed.
Electrical work. This is one of those jobs that falls under the “Could it kill me?” category. Leave all electrical work to the pros.
Framing. The frame is essentially the skeleton of your house. If not done properly, you put your home’s strength and security at risk. Framing is a task that requires careful calculation, knowledge of different varieties of lumber, and familiarity with building codes.
HVAC. Replacing or fixing a furnace without the proper knowledge can expose you and your family to gas leaks and other dangers. HVAC technicians have the certification and on-the-job experience to recognize your needs and provide a safe, effective solution.
Plumbing. Plumbers do a whole lot more than unclog toilets. Your home’s plumbing is an intricate system; plumbers have the tools and expertise to complete the job without causing unforeseen problems.
Welding. Welding requires specialized skills and equipment that the average DIY-er lacks.
Landscaping. Contract a professional landscaper for complex tasks like pouring concrete and installing lighting and water features. Landscapers can also come up with sophisticated designs to make your yard stand out from the rest.
Roofing. Aside from the obvious safety risk that roofing poses, doing a poor job will only cause problems and cost you money in the future. Save yourself the headache and hire a pro.
Painting the deck or fence. Revitalize your yard by giving the deck or fence a fresh coat of paint. It’s a straightforward job you can complete at your own pace.
Replacing fixtures. These are quick renovations that can be done with few tools. Replacing a light fixture, doorknob, or faucet can help modernize a room.
Installing organization systems. One way to maximize storage space is by installing an organization system in your closet or garage. Most hardware stores will offer a variety of systems along with instructions on how to assemble them.
Basic landscaping. Planting flower beds and trees and decorating with stones or lawn ornaments are enjoyable tasks that don’t require specialized skills.
Taking the do-it-yourself route may seem like a great way to save money, but it could actually end up costing you more in the long run. Not only that, you run the risk of putting yourself and your loved ones in danger if you don’t know precisely what you’re doing. For most home renovation projects, hiring a professional is the best way to ensure the job is done safely, correctly, and efficiently.