When to Ditch the DIY and Use a Pro

When Should You Ditch the DIY and Use a Pro for Your Renovation Projects?

DIY can be fun, empowering, and cost saving, as many of you probably know. I do a lot of projects at home and really enjoy most of it. My last big project was an inexpensive kitchen remodel. First, I installed my own subfloor and laid vinyl in the kitchen. Then I did some wall repair and painted. Finally, I repaired the ancient pine cupboards, repainted them, and replaced all the hardware (plus the heating vent covers) and it was like a brand-new room. I have a fairly large tool arsenal but had to rent a vinyl tile cutter, which was about $30 for the weekend. I didn’t like the available molding, so I cut some inexpensive pine and routed an edge on it (it looks like no other trim in the world). I’m a really retentive painter, so was happy with my own work. All of this was really satisfying, partly because I did it all with my very own hands, but by the time I was finished, I had about 70 hours in it. I wasn't employed full time at the time, so I had time to spare. Now I find that working a full-time job and trying to do DIY renovation projects is sometimes just too much. Time factor aside, sometimes it's just easier to let someone else do it and enjoy some free time. Here is a list of all the reasons why you (and I) might want to hire a pro contractor for home renovations.

  • When your skills are not quite up to snuff, and you don’t want to spend the time improving them.
  • When purchasing or renting equipment doesn’t save you as much as you thought it would.
  • When you work long hours and just need more time to relax.
  • When you are missing family/partner time.
  • When you just don't enjoy it anymore (or never enjoyed it).
  • When you know about wiring, but you're an air sign and a bit afraid you'll space out at the wrong moment.
  • When tools scare you (it's okay, don't feel bad). Circular saws are pretty frightening.
  • When your relationships/friendships become strained because you have become a slave to your home.
  • When you overtaxed your friends with your beer-for-labor weekend projects, and they think you suck.
  • When you realize just how heavy that piece of drywall and OSB is to carry and fasten.
  • When a weekend rendezvous to the Keys (or multiple getaways) are more appealing than swinging a hammer.
  • When you know a pro is going to do it better.
  • When a pro knows about housing codes (and you don't)--plus they can pull appropriate permits for the tricky projects.

Here are a few more advantages of hiring a pro for your home renovations:

  • They know how to pull permits and might have connections with local inspectors.
  • Contractors know about local codes and should practice compliance (you would have to do more research, unless of course you are licensed yourself).
  • Pros have more experience and are therefore more skilled at tiling, plumbing, drywall, and the other skills needed for home renovations. 
  • A skilled remodeler should be current with modern (or recycled) materials  and trends and able to advise you on materials and design choices.
  • A pro should be up on latest technology (plumbing, electrical, lights, bath fixtures, etc. and can make expert recommendations (also saving your research time).
  • A pro will get the job done faster than you will (as long as they haven’t overbooked).
  • You will have your home/bath/kitchen back in working order quicker.
  • Hiring professionals to do it frees your time for relaxation, travel, and your partner, family and friends.
  • Hiring a reliable contractor can reduce the stress in your life caused by learning new skills and having your house in a disarray for extended periods of time.

These are all great reasons for hiring a pro. Do enjoy your painting, tiling and other projects, but when you get burned out, we can get you free quotes for painters, roofers, flooring installers and all kinds of pros. And if cleaning overwhelms you, it isn’t a sin to hire some help for that too.

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