When you are planning a home renovation, there are a number of things you might be interested in doing, chief of which is how to save money. When not checked, the cost of renovations can rise to very high levels, sometimes to the point of being unfeasible. There are various strategies that people can use to try and avoid this, including making sure that you come up with a strict budget before the process begins. Working with a high quality contractor will also help, since they usually result in very little waste.
One of the touchier plans you might have is to do the renovations on your own. The logic behind using a DIY approach to cut down on the cost of the project is that you will not need to pay any labour costs for the process. In addition to that, you also get to choose the pace at which you get the job done, so that you don’t have to spend large sums of money in a short time.
However, whether or not this is a good way to save money is not always clear. There are some parts of the project that you should definitely never do on your own, unless you have the skill to pull it off. When planning to handle some of the projects this way, there are a number of questions you need to ask yourself, and which will help you figure out how to proceed. Some of these include:
Is it worth your time?
You will definitely need a lot of time to carry out home renovations particularly if you are going to make numerous changes to the home. In such cases, you need to weigh the benefits of saving just a few dollars versus how inconvenient it will be for you. For instance, there are some people who only have the weekends to themselves. If you want to replace the kitchen cabinets in your home on your own, you should be prepared to make the kitchen inaccessible for a few weeks if you are such a person. This can be made even worse if you usually work very hard during the rest of the week, such that you will need the weekend to relax.
What this basically means that even if you figure that using a DIY approach will save you money, you should also think about other things such as how inconvenient it will be. In many cases, spending just a little bit more to get a contractor is worth it.
Do you have the tools?
The quality of your workmanship as well as how fast you work will depend greatly on the availability of specialized tools. For instance, if you will be working with wood, using a manual saw will be more dangerous and more tasking compared to using an electric one.
This essentially means that before you decide to use a DIY approach to do the renovation, you need to find out if you have the tools needed for the job. If you consult a contractor, they will show up with their specialized tools, which means that you wouldn’t need to worry about this.
How technical is it?
Before starting a DIY renovation, you need to find out how the project is supposed to be done. For instance, if you want to replace the drywall, you should avoid having to learn on the job. You can first go online to find out what tools and materials you need, as well as the steps you need to take to get it done. This will give you an idea of whether or not you can handle it. If a project seems too complicated, it would be ideal to not start working on it at all.
One important aspect of technicality is the standard you need to do the renovation at. If you live in an area where there are very strict building codes, chances are that you will be required to make renovations that live up to a certain standard. In such cases, handling the project on your own might be less than ideal. You are likely to contravene such codes, particularly if you don’t understand them. Some of the consequences of this include facing huge fines, which will definitely increase the cost of the project.
How much risk does it involve?
You also need to assess the risk profile associated with the project. For instance, replacing a roof can be a dangerous affair, particularly if you do it on a very hot day or when it’s rained. Attempting to do so when you are unfit and if you have never done it before will put you at risk of falling off the roof.
In summary, you should not think of DIY as the best way to cut down on the cost of a renovation. When not thought through, it might actually turn out to be the most expensive way to handle the project.