Home renovation – Do it yourself or hire a pro?
By Karen Scopetski, V.P. Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage
Do you find yourself watching HGTV and feeling empowered to take on home improvement projects on your own? If so, you’re not the only one. According to Bankrate (www.bankrate.com/finance/money-guides/hire-a-pro-or-play-the-pro-a-diy-dilemma-1.aspx), “the do-it-yourself, or DIY, trend has been fueled by the ease in finding project information. With home improvement television shows, home store seminars and the Internet bringing how-to’s right to the workbench, opportunities to learn abound.”
They do warn though, before deciding to do it yourself consider the following: assess your skills, consider the costs, and evaluate your options. In terms of assessing your skills, successful projects require more than just the will to do it yourself; consult someone who works at your favorite home improvement store, speak to friends or family members that have taken on a similar project, and do some reading to get a good sense of what you’re in for. It is also advised that tackling a project such as plumbing or electricity is much better handled by a professional in those trades, especially when building codes and regulations are concerned. In terms of costs, although labor costs are eliminated by doing it yourself, consider that contractors often get material discounts and also own necessary tools that the average person may not and can be quite costly. But also remember that renting these tools is always an option if you do choose to go the DIY route.
All in all, evaluating your options means also considering factoring in the time it takes to do the work yourself, but it does earn you the bragging rights and the sense of accomplishment! It is ultimately best to evaluate projects on a case by case basis and really do your homework! And do remember to think ahead to how your home value will be affected.
Karen Scopetski, Vice President Coldwell Banker Residential
318 Main St., Northborough, MA 01532
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