While some DIY home improvement mistakes are unavoidable and reparable, there are also those that can cost you a lot. You can avoid costly mistakes by knowing the right steps involved in doing home improvement projects.
With the top 7 most common DIY mistakes listed below, you’ll know how get the work done more efficiently and cost-effectively too. Remember these simple tips and avoid redoing home improvement jobs that have already cost you time and money.
Mistake #1 – Not Obtaining Permit and Failure to Research Codes
You may think that knowing about existing codes and obtaining permits can be quite expensive; but it’s actually more expensive not to do so. You see, contractors can make sure that the job is done in accordance to the law and that everything is done correctly.
If somebody reports you to the authorities and it is found that you have completed a project without permit, you could be required to tear down your work. Starting over can be really frustrating AND EXPENSIVE.
Should you consider selling your house, some buyers would also check if you have done home improvement jobs with or without permit. And a majority of your possible buyers will be turned off if they find that previous works have been done without proper permit.
Mistake #2 – Failure to Plan on the Task at Hand
Even simple jobs need to be planned in order to be able to expect outstanding results. The right way to plan for a job is to note down the day to day work required for a particular project.
It is also important to set a targeted time for a project’s completion so that you can plan your other responsibilities around it. Make sure that you set a realistic time frame for the completion of the job too, as this will depend on the complexity of the work.
Mistake #3 – Under Budgeting
Under budgeting and over spending are 2 of the most disappointing things in home improvement jobs. When budgeting for a particular project, always include the little things like nails, tape, sealant, joint compound, staples, etc. All these things add up, especially when used abundantly; and not listing them down and budgeting accordingly can really affect your overall expenses.
Prepare for wastage too; and allot around 10% of your total budget to such wastes. If you’re not going to buy all the materials needed for the work at one go, consider price increases too.
Mistake #4 – Taking On Jobs You’re Not Qualified For
Tackling on jobs that you are not really an expert on can prove to be expensive and dangerous. One of our neighbors took on the job of installing a new roof even if he was afraid of heights. Well, he slipped and fell and suffered major injuries because of it. Fortunately, he recovered from the fall and learned his lesson well. Now he hires contractors when work needs to be done on the roof.
Note that the lesson above doesn’t only apply to roof repairs and constructions but to any type of home improvement job. Before taking on any job, make sure that you are qualified for it and that you can handle all the things involved in the work from start to finish.
Mistake #5 – Not Preparing for the Unexpected
When it comes to home improvement, being a pessimist can sometimes work for you. If the job calls for tearing down a part of the wall, for example, it would be wise to prepare for the worse. You could discover pest infestations that will surely require more work and more expenses.
Anticipate finding defective wires and pipes if the job requires opening up closed areas too. When discovered, these parts should be immediately replaced and repaired.
Mistake #6 – Not Using the Proper Tools
If you are frequently working on DIY projects, it would be wise to invest on the right set of tools for your work. Using professional tools provides for professional results as you can perform the job well and more efficiently. It will take you less time to complete the work if you’re using the right types of tools for the job too.
Aside from resulting in inefficient work, using the wrong tools can even be dangerous. You can get injured because of this; that’s why it should be avoided.
Mistake #7 – Not Taking Precautionary Measures
Any home improvement working site can be a dangerous place. And for this reason, it is highly recommended that the proper working gear are always worn and used no matter how simple a job is.
Wearing goggles when performing sawing and sanding jobs, for example, is very important as flying dust and debris can hurt your eyes. Likewise, wearing gloves is equally important when working on manual jobs as this can lessen hand fatigue. Gloves are also recommended when operating power tools as these can protect the hands from injuries.
When working on electrical jobs, make sure that the main switch is turned off. Even if you are an electrician, one minor mistake or slip of the hand can result in electrocution and death.