With DIY on the rise, you may have thought about taking on some home improvement projects recently. However, there are some projects, such as exterior painting, where it pays to go pro. Here are a few things to keep in mind so that you can avoid DIY disasters.
1. Safety is important
Before you take on a project, consider the dangers involved. Something that seems simple, such as exterior painting, can be very dangerous. Over 90,000 people visit the ER every year after falling off of ladders, and hundreds die.
Contractors are trained in safety measures, and are better equipped to take on risky tasks. For any project where there’s a risk of being injured, using a contractor should always be your first option.
2. Mistakes can be costly
You don’t know how it all went wrong. That weekend project that you found on Pinterest promised to turn your dull, solid-colored countertops into faux-marble using nothing more than paint. Except that now it’s Sunday night, your counters look nothing like the picture, and you have no idea how to fix the sticky mess you made.
If a project you see online sounds too good to be true, it just might be. When you’re working in your home, a mistake is likely to be hard to fix, often causing damage that is more costly than it would have been to use contractors in the first place.
3. Time is money
Most DIYers drastically underestimate the time it will take them to complete a project. Consider the cost of your time when deciding whether to take on a project yourself versus hiring someone. You should also consider the amount of time you can truly put aside to work on your house. If you start a project on the weekend and run out of time to complete it, you might be left with an incomplete or unusable room by the time you have to go to work Monday morning.
To get a better idea of this, try to request a free quote from a contractor. The cost of your time plus the supplies you would need to purchase to do the job yourself will likely end up being greater than the fee a contractor would charge.
4. Experience is priceless
You can’t put a price on experience. Contractors have years to master the art of installing molding perfectly straight, and painting with crisp, even strokes. If you install something in your house inexpertly, be prepared to live with less-than-perfect results.
A good litmus test for this: if you have to look up a tutorial for something on YouTube, you should probably hire a contractor.