In the era of house flipping and home reno DIY, it's incredibly tempting to try and tackle projects yourself. After all, some repairs and remodels can be pricey, and doing them yourself may help save you money. Additionally, doing your own home projects can let you completely personalize and control the process.
However, no matter how easy home reno shows make it look, some projects are best left to the professionals. Taking on bigger projects than you can handle may cost you more time and stress in the long run. So how do you know which jobs are the perfect challenge and which are too far out of your comfort zone? Here are the most common home repairs most homeowners can DIY and some they should leave to the pros.
DIY-Friendly Home Repairs
• Installing plank flooring. Flooring options have come a long way, and modern items, like plank flooring, are very DIY-friendly. Floating floors that install with fold-and-lock joinery are a cinch for most homeowners.
• Hanging drywall. You may need to grab a friend to help, but hanging drywall sheets is a relatively simple job. However, mudding and sanding are often a bit more challenging.
• Small-room renovation projects. Overhauling smaller rooms, like bathrooms, can be an excellent first foray into many home repair projects. Bathrooms can offer just enough projects without requiring too many skills, from ceramic tile to hooking up plumbing under your new vanity.
• Seal your asphalt driveway. If your driveway just needs a new seal to return its color and durability, it is likely a project you can do on your own. Liquid driveway sealer is much easier to lay down than hot asphalt and can revive your drive.
• Hang doors. Lightweight interior doors don't require the weatherproofing or safety considerations of exterior doors, meaning you can likely maneuver and install them on your own. Whether it's a pre-hung door or a door slab replacement, there's no need to be afraid of this project.
• Plumbing projects using PEX pipe. Intricate plumbing projects should be left to professionals to prevent costly water damage. However, smaller hookups that can be completed with straightforward PEX pipes offer a great introduction to plumbing. Remember, you'll likely need a permit if you're doing any major plumbing installs.
• Minor electrical projects. Electrical projects can be a bit daunting, and rightly so, but with proper precautions, many homeowners can work on their electrical systems. Swapping out outlets, installing smart home panels, and things like installing a ceiling fan are typically DIY-friendly.
What Projects Should Be Left to the Pros?
In some cases, it can be obvious that a home repair or reno is best left to the professionals. Such is the case with large landscaping projects, changes to your home's structure, major
plumbing repair, window installation, exterior door installation, roof work, gas appliance repair, and major additions such as sunrooms.
But there are gray areas where homeowners may debate whether or not they should hire a professional. For example, wiring projects that involve installing dedicated circuitry or code corrections are usually beyond the average homeowner's capabilities. Generally, if a lot of skill is involved or there is the potential for serious harm, it's better left to the pros. Thankfully, many great professionals are ready to lend a helping hand if you need it!