How To Decide When To Hire A Professional For Home Improvement vs When To Do It Yourself

There are certain jobs that need to be done around the house, to do with your car, or in other areas of life that you can do yourself – you just need to have the requisite DIY skills, and you can go ahead. However, there are other jobs that require much more advanced knowledge, and this is when a professional is needed. 

Sometimes it’s easy to know which one is which, but that’s not always the case. In that situation, when you’re not sure what to do, how can you decide whether to hire a professional or not? Read on for some useful advice that should help you make the right decision. 

 

Photo by Blue Bird

 

Think Of The Materials And Equipment 

Many tasks around the house can be completed with just a few simple tools and materials. Painting a room, for example, requires paint, brushes, and rollers as well as a tray, drop cloths, and sometimes blue painter’s tape. If you don’t already have these things, buying them isn’t a massive issue; they’re easy to get hold of and easy to use. 

 

However, something a little more complex, such as putting up tiles, will often require additional tools. You might need a tile saw, for example, and measuring equipment. Plus, you’ll need to know how to measure the gap between each tile and what to use to adhere them to the wall. 

 

In the first instance, if you’re happy to do it yourself, then you certainly can – the results will usually be satisfactory. In the second, it’s probably best to hire someone to help you. They will already have the equipment and the experience required. This will save you money because you won’t have to buy a tool you may only use once. 

 

Also, if you’re working on a project that requires you to borrow and operate a huge piece of equipment for the first time, assess your degree of comfort. Using your neighbor's power washer to clean your deck in the spring is one thing; hiring an excavator to move some dirt is quite another. Do it if you're naturally good at operating heavy machines but if you aren’t sure, proceed with a lot of caution – or hire an expert. 

 

How Complex Is The Job?

Let’s go back to the idea of painting a room. No matter how big or small that room is, the job is a simple one – clean the walls, then paint the walls. You’ll probably have to put another coat of paint on once it has dried, but that’s it. 

 

However, not all jobs are as simple as this and will often require specific expertise. If your golf club were to break, for example, would you know what to do to fix it, or would you know that you needed to find a professional in golf club regripping? It’s probably the latter, and for good reason; you don’t have the skills to do the work, and it’s a complicated procedure to try to learn just to do it yourself. 

 

What Are The Consequences? 

Perhaps you’re still not sure whether you should hire a professional or try to do the work yourself – there is a lot to think about, after all. With that in mind, it’s helpful to think about the consequences. In other words, what would happen if you tried to do something yourself and it went wrong? 

 

If something went wrong while you were painting a room, you might have to repaint it. Perhaps, in extreme circumstances, you might have to hire someone to tidy the edges up or clean the carpet if you spilled something. Although these are not ideal, they’re not dangerous problems. They might still make you want to hire a professional, but they’re not specifically a reason to if you would prefer to try to do the job personally. 

 

However, there are situations where the consequences of getting something wrong would be dangerous. Electrics are a prime example. They are difficult to get right without a lot of experience and even without the proper qualifications, and that means that if you try to make electrical repairs yourself – other than changing a light bulb, that is – you might make your entire house dangerous. You could cause electric shocks, electrocution, and it might also be a fire hazard. So think carefully about what might go wrong and always err on the side of caution. 

 

Make The Right Choice

When it comes to DIY, it’s fun to do projects around the house, and it’s easy to get carried away thinking that it all looks easy to do. Some of it will be, and some of it will be deceptively tricky. Always make sure you do your homework before deciding one way or another.

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