Do-it-yourself home renovations can be incredibly rewarding. There is nothing quite like having friends and family admire and praise a new deck or basement reno and then to proudly inform them that you did the job yourself.  Of course, there are drawbacks too. If you get in over your head with a DIY project, you could end up spending more than you saved.

So how can you have an enjoyable DIY experience while avoiding the pitfalls? Here are a few tips that you should heed before you begin your DIY home renovation project.

  • Start with a plan – before you pick up that hammer or that paintbrush, determine what you want your final project to look like. With the abundance of resources available such as Pinterest, Houzz as well as good old fashioned magazines, it shouldn’t be too hard to find inspiration. You can even find detailed instructions and video tutorials of various types of projects.
  • Ask an expert – just because you are going to do the job yourself, doesn’t mean that you can’t get some professional advice. Have a consultation with an interior designer or hire a home inspector before you start your project. Find out if it’s necessary to have permits or licensed contractors for the renovation you are planning.
  • Have a budget – home renovations can be expensive, but having a budget helps you keep your expenses under control. Determine how much you will need for materials and any additional labour. You’ll also want to keep a portion of your budget for unexpected costs.
  • Have a timeline – just like you want to allot your money, you should also budget your time. Make an estimate of how long the job will take you and try to stick to a timeline. DIY projects that drag on and on can quickly become a hassle to you and everyone else living in your home.
  • Stay Safe – make sure that you have the appropriate safety gear including safety glasses, work boots, dust mask etc. If you are working with power tools, ensure that you aren’t wearing anything which might get caught. Keep your work area tidy to avoid tripping hazards.
  • Do your prep work – while you might be anxious to get to the final stage of your home renovation, remember that proper prep work is one of the keys to a successful job. So whether it’s measuring, sanding, priming or something else, ensure you take the time to prep everything thoroughly.
  • Have the proper tools – The old adage that says use the right tools for the job is true. Before you begin your project, determine which tools you will need to have on hand. If you don’t have a tool that you need, get it rather than trying to make due with something else. You should be able to purchase or rent any equipment you require from your local home improvement store.
  • Practice techniques – if you’re taking on a job that you’ve never done before, practice techniques on scrap material first. Whether you are cutting crown molding, or laying tiles, a little practice goes a long way. This will save you from making costly mistakes with your good material.
  • Know your limitations – If you’re uncomfortable using certain power tools or doing a particular job, then it is time to call in the experts. Avoid accidents by sticking only to jobs you have confidence in.

Remember to follow these tips, for a successful DIY home renovation!

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