To do or not to do-it-yourself? Helpful questions to ask yourself before your next DIY project

There are several benefits to DIY projects. They can save time and money and you’ll feel accomplished having completed a project for your home. They can also help increase the value of your home! Do-it-yourself projects are a growing trend but how do you know if the project is one you should take on yourself or not? Here are a few questions to ask yourself before strapping on your tool belt and running out to your local home improvement store.

Do I have the time and is it worth the effort?

The internet is filled with “simple” DIY tutorials that make it look like a breeze, but reality doesn’t always seem to match. Ask yourself what kind of time you realistically have to dedicate to this project. Is it a weekend project? Several weekends? Will you be working on it pieces in the evenings during the week? Do you have the estimated time to spare to make it worth your while? Saving money is great but time has a cost as well.

What are the potential barriers this project may create?

Depending on the scale of the project, you may need to consider work space as well. If you’re painting a room, it shouldn’t be a problem. If you’re doing something like a bathroom remodel, you may have to consider how long the bathroom will not be accessible or usable. Do you have a spare?

Consider your space, limitations and any potential barriers. If you have kids, that may be a factor to assess before taking the project on. Is it something they can help with? Is it going to create added stress?

What tools and materials do I need?

What materials are needed and are they accessible to you? If not, they can be more costly than one would think. We suggest making a list of everything needed. If  you don’t have some of the required tools or materials, do some research before committing to the project. For example, if you need a tile saw – do you have a friend you could borrow from? Is there an option to rent one from a local store? If so, what is the cost? This step may also include getting a quote from a professional and comparing it to the cost of doing it yourself.

What is the risk?

DIY projects can be so fulfilling and enjoyable, but there are some best left to a professional. If the potential exists to injure yourself or do damage, best to not DIY. The best examples of these are anything dealing with electrical or gas. Plumbing updates or repairs can fall into the risky category too, depending on size of project. Flooring is another home project that can become risky very quickly. Asbestos is something you do not want to remove yourself.

Helpful flooring tip: Here in MN, if you have an older home, you may have 9” VCT tile. If you’re trying to remove this, call a professional. This, along with some 12” VCT commonly contain asbestos.

DIY Backsplash

Small DIY bathroom sink backplash project was successful, so this DIYer decided to do a matching one for around the bathtub.

Our best advice for aspiring DIYers:

Start small. The ambition and excitement to do DIY projects can be ruined quickly with one project gone wrong. Start with something fun and manageable, get a feel for the pros and cons and your areas of strength and take it from there. Here are a few good ideas for starter projects:

  • Refresh a room with new paint
  • Upgrade your kitchen or bathroom faucet
  • Create a backsplash

This post isn’t meant to scare you or stop you from doing a project yourself. There are a lot of benefits and it can be a ton of fun. We simply want to help prepare you, so that your next DIY project is a success. Better to be over prepared and cautious than end up as a Pinterest fail and not want to DIY again.

If you ask yourself the questions above, we think you’re going to love it.

What DIY projects have you had success with? Some you wouldn’t recommend to others? Share them with us in the comments below!

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