Read the Signs: How to Know When You Should DIY vs. Hire a Pro


Home Improvement Projects: Should You DIY or Hire a Professional?Any homeowner will tell you that they look around their home and see a laundry list of home improvement projects that they want to tackle. From major kitchen renovations to minor updates like new light fixtures or smart technology upgrades, there's always some way to improve the appearance and functionality of any home. All home improvement projects are an investment of a homeowner's time and resources, so it's important that they take the time to consider the cost of the project and the ultimate return on their investment.

One question nearly every homeowner is faced with when they begin a new project is: Should I DIY this project or hire a professional contractor?

Here are 3 signs that you could DIY the project:

The Project is Manageable and Can Be Done Quickly

Most people who are planning to DIY a home improvement project also work another full-time job, which can make it difficult to take on larger, more time consuming projects. A project that takes less than 5 days to complete can generally be attempted as a DIY project. However, homeowners should assess their availability and make a schedule that includes time for unexpected complications that may arise.

The Project is Not Intended to Prepare the Home to Sell

Projects such as painting bedrooms or updating the landscaping are good DIY projects because they update the home to the individual's tastes, but they don't necessarily have a big impact on resale value. Projects that can be treated more like hobbies are good to DIY.

The Project has Minimal Associated Risk

Homeowners should only consider a DIY project if they feel they are skilled and experienced enough to complete it safely. Inexperienced homeowners should avoid DIY projects that include electrical work, structural work or excessive heights. It is best for homeowners to only take on projects that require basic knowledge and skill to complete.

Here are 3 signs you should hire a professional:

The Project Costs are High Regardless of Labor

Many people attempt to DIY home improvement projects because they can significantly reduce the cost of labor. However, there are some projects that are expensive regardless, and many times those projects are best left to professionals anyway. Kitchen and bathroom renovations, for instance, are going to be costly even without labor.

The Project Requires Specialized Training

There are some projects that inexperienced homeowners simply should not attempt on their own. Many improvements and upgrades require an individual to be knowledgeable about that particular component of the house, and to have spent a significant amount of time working in that industry. Masonry work, plumbing, carpentry and electrical updates are just a few examples of projects that are better left to professionals with expert skills.

The Project Requires Permits

There are many home improvement projects that require homeowners to obtain permits for the work. Any project that requires a permit is best left to a professional, who will know exactly what needs to be done in order to meet the requirements for the municipality in which the homeowner resides.

When deciding whether to DIY the project or hire a contractor, homeowners should consider the ultimate purpose for any project in their Salt Lake City home. Those who are looking to improve the home in hopes of boosting the resale value of their home should work with a qualified real estate agent in order to determine which option would be best for the project they are considering.

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