Crafty people, frugal people, people who like to get their hands dirty — there’s no question that doing it yourself has broad appeal. However, some home improvements simply shouldn’t be DIY. Whether they’re too dangerous, too technical, or just too hard, here are five tasks you should always hire professionals for:
Instructional videos and DIY guides make electrical work sound simple enough. However, a small mistake can create major problems. You could accidentally cut power to part of your home, receive a dangerous electrical shock, or start an electrical fire. According to the National Fire Protection Association, electrical failures cause 13 percent of home fires. And sometimes, faulty wiring will function for years before starting a fire, so you don’t know right away that something is wrong. Hiring a licensed electrician for a remodeling project or room addition will run you between $448 and $1,768, but the peace of mind is worth it.
You may be able to hang drywall without the help of a professional, but it’s unlikely you can do it well. Installing drywall requires special tools and the skill to match seams and create smooth transitions between sheets. Moving an existing wall also requires demolition and risks damaging electrical wiring. If you’re taking on a project bigger than a hole or crack repair, such as moving a wall or adding a room, hire a professional instead. In Dallas, the average cost for drywall installation is $845-$2,154, and the project takes three to four days.
When it’s time to update your home’s look, you might consider painting it yourself. However, painting a house’s exterior is a lot different than repainting a room, and the effort might be more than you bargained for. A home with multiple stories and ornate details leaves you on a ladder for hours doing detail work, and you might not have a safe spot to place the ladder in a sloping yard. On the ground level, shrubs, trees, and air conditioning units get in the way. And owners of older homes have another concern: Homes built before 1978 might be painted with lead paint, according to the Environmental Protection Agency.
Unclogging a drain, installing a new shower head, or replacing a faucet are all in the purview of the average homeowner, but more involved plumbing work should be left to licensed plumbers. It doesn’t take much to turn a quick DIY project into a costly repair, especially if you’re installing new plumbing or working on a water heater. Instead of taking on this messy and time- consuming project yourself, let a plumber do the work for your remodel ; it’ll cost about $343- $1,576 and be complete in a matter of days.
Adding a room or removing a load-bearing wall requires permits, and while some cities will permit homeowners to do structural work, it’s still not a wise choice. The removal of a load- bearing wall threatens the structural integrity of your home, especially if you don’t replace it with appropriate beams. Constructing a house addition requires a wide range of skills that would take years to learn, so it’s best to hire contractors and save your time and sanity. However, it’s a big project that will cost an average $23,590-$56,148.
So which projects can homeowners take on as a DIY project? There’s plenty that you can do to personalize your home without spending money on contractors. The most approachable DIY home renovations focus on aesthetics: The average homeowner can add an accent wall, give a fireplace a makeover, or re-tile a backsplash. If you’re especially handy, consider refacing kitchen cabinets, re-tiling a bathroom floor, or even building a low deck. However, to keep your home safe, avoid anything that affects your home’s basic infrastructure: HVAC, plumbing, electrical, the roof, and structural elements.
Credit- Paul Denikin | paul@dadknowsDIY.com