DIY Home Remodel vs Hiring a Professional

Pros and Cons of doing a remodeling project yourself versus hiring a professional

There are a multitide of reasons homeowners try to tackle home renovation and remodel jobs themselves — but probably the most common one is cost. Professional handyman or home remodelers can be expensive with their labor/hour costs and purchasing supplies. On average, general contractors charge $50 an hour, according to contractor search service Thumbtack. For large projects taking weeks, that labor charge could be thousands upon thousands of dollars.

D0-It-Yourself home remodeling is undoubtedly cheaper, but it can also be quite impractical, dangerous, or even illegal. However, deciding whether you should Do-It-Yourself or hire a professional doesn’t have to cause confusion or stress as it can be as simple as honestly answering a series of questions pertaining to safety, expertise and time investment.

Is it safe to Do-It-Yourself?

Numerous do-it-yourself activities such as balancing on a roof for roof repairs, installing a fuse box, or manipulating a water softener into one's basement, pose the risk of physical danger. Before undertaking any Do-it-yourself project, always ask yourself: Could I get injured or killed doing this? If the answer is yes, or even maybe, then hiring a professional is not only the better option, but the only option you should make.

It is important to think about everyone around the repairs in your home or business, and also questions like "Do I have safe places to store tools and hazardous materials away from children and pets?" or "Is there any danger in leaving out the project supplies, especially if I'll only be working intermittently?"

It is absolutely for these safety reasons that people have to be trained and licensed to do certain jobs. They are licensed and bonded to complete the projects to the safety standards set for them by the state and local jurisdictions.

Do you have the skills to Do-It-Yourself


Building a fence, tearing down a retaining wall or varnishing a table are minor home improvement projects homeowners can do and often do themselves. These can be good things in that they teach new skills for all involved, and give a sense of accomplishment. However, other projects aren't as suitable for the “learn as you go” approach. Replumbing a bathroom, replacing a fireplace, installing a new furnace, replacing anything electrical, properly hooking up a water softener are complex projects requiring special skills and advance knowledge. In general, any major renovation or replacement involving electricity/gas, heat or water usually requires the services of a licensed professional, and shouldn’t be done yourself no matter one's confidence or time to complete the project.

Remember that if you make a mistake in your D0-it-yourself project, not only will it damage your house and wreck its appearance, but ironically, you will probably also need to call a handyman or home remodeler to correct the mistake...and this can cost even more than hiring a professional in the first place.

Do you have the time to DIY


DIY projects can save you dollars, but time is money too — and home renovation projects can take several weeks or months to complete, especially for the learn as you go do-it-yourselfer. Will your full time job allow or the proper timing and consideration to finish all portions of the project in the proper steps. Drying time or working on something before it cools are considerations one must consider before beginning a do-it-yourself project.

Another time element to consider: Do you have the leisure to obtain work permits if your locality mandates them, and this is assuming they’re even given to non-professionals? This is a must to understand that if a project requires a work permit, and only contractors can get that permit, it’s probably a sign you can’t legally do it yourself

Can you afford to DI


Ironically, it isn’t always cheaper to Do-it-yourself. In fact, you could end up spending more to buy the tools and materials than you would on a contractor who already owns them and has used them on many previous projects.

Many remodeling projects need — or at least, are much easier with — specialized, expensive equipment already in the possession of the professional handyman or home remodeler. As an example, a high-quality manual tile cutter that is often required for kitchen or bathroom remodeling projects can cost as much as $3,000. Motorized models can run to five figures, so if a project’s one-of-a-kind, do you really want to invest hundreds to rent or thousands to buy a tool you will likely not use ever again?

As for materials: They are obviously a necessity you would pay for anyway, however, they might be difficult to obtain on your own, and some suppliers may not even want to deal with lay people or they’ll charge more for a relatively small retail order. On the other hand, handyman contractors will often get deals on supplies and materials, and they generally provide their own gear. In the long run, it is likely better financially for larger projects (and most smaller projects too) to hire a professional

The bottom line: Do-It-Yourself vs hiring a p

rofessional handyman

The team at Loess Hills Handyman has the skills and experience to safely, quickly, and economically complete any of your small, medium, or larger home improvement projects for your Council Bluffs Iowa and surrounding areas home or business. We guarantee the quality of our work, and we truly believe it is better investment overall to hire Loess Hills Handyman as your handyman for any home project that could be unsafe, a time sucker, or financially unsound for you to do yourself. Contact us anytime to discuss getting an estimate, and we looking forward to working with you soon!s.

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