The method of modifying, building, or otherwise repairing things without the direct aid of experts or professionals has earned the nickname DIY. It’s often set in motion by some things like the state of a person’s finances, a lack of a certain product that the individual needs, or simply the base need of humankind to create and build. This last part can touch on how true craftsmanship is a sought after and dying skill, or how empowering it is to build something on your own – think of the fulfilling feeling you get after putting something together from IKEA, especially when there’s a missing part or misleading instructions.
It’s wonderful and elevating to one’s self to figure something out. The aha moment and the feeling of accomplishment are big things. This is often a major driver of DIY. However, there are certain things that can be DIY’ed and other things that you really ought to leave to the professionals.
With the advantages of online tutorials, many claim that there isn’t anything you can’t figure out how to do on your own, and while that may be true, those things that should be left to the people trained to do them can cost a lot in beginner’s mistakes as you try to sort things out. I suppose it depends on time and money. How much of these resources do you have, and how much of them are you willing to part with?
- Yes, you can figure out how your kitchen sink comes apart and goes back together if given enough time. However, that often means taking time out of other things. How long are you willing to go without a kitchen sink? That’s something you use every day. Will your busy schedule and daily tasks permit you the time to puzzle this out? To save yourself time, and to avoid a disastrous plumbing situation, skip the DIY and contact a high-quality plumbing service. For other things, it’s not always possible to make your own product. Do you a manufacturer who can help you make blinds? Do you know how to make memory foam or construct a mattress? Do you have the necessary machinery to surface a play area? Sometimes only a professional can help. In the mentioned examples, it’s more cost-effective to order outdoor and café blinds online, find well-tested mattresses backed by professional research, or contact a play area surfacing specialist.
- Speaking to the financial side, this is often what causes people to try and tackle the DIY route. Lack of money to pay for the professionals kind of leaves a person stuck. Many household projects can be fixed through DIY and without a professional or the fees they would impose. However, some projects can end up costing far more if you have to keep DIY-ing, or fixing missteps along the way to trying to fix the original problem. Sure you can watch online videos to build your own house, but will it be structurally sound and worth the cost and time? If not, then it’s safer to consult with a home remodeling firm to see what they can do for you.
Preparation is key to some things, and DIY is going to be no different. Below are the tips on how to make your DIY projects go smoother, and when it’s simply best to skip the DIY this time and call in the professionals.
- When it’s possible, and you have the time, educate yourself. The old-fashioned library shelves hold thousands of how to books, and if you don’t have time for that, a quick internet search will potentially yield even more results. Many hardware stores even offer free classes, in the hopes that you will become inspired to tackle that project you’ve been procrastinating on and purchase your DIY materials there. There are also numerous online resources that can teach you how to safely apply garden chemicals or organic alternatives, or how to construct your own bookshelf. Thorough research and careful planning are what make DIY projects successful.
- Overcome the fear of “I can’t.” You can, with a bit of help and some preparation before tearing apart the bathroom in the name of a simple update. Don’t get bogged down in the horror stories of DIY gone wrong, but do take heed of them. Keep in mind, too, that all of the preparation in the world may still leave you short because things can take a turn for the worse.
- Work smarter, not harder. If, for instance, your boss has asked you to manage the office clean-up, is this something you can do without taking away from your actual work responsibilities? If not, then it may be time to suggest hiring a commercial office cleaner. If there’s an emergency situation or even something more mundane like a big move or work that can cause you a serious injury, don’t risk yourself. It is far better to bite the bullet and hire a professional if you can’t be sure than to risk doing something incorrectly. Not only can guesswork in a DIY project cost thousands to redo, but it might also cost you an injury that could mean no future DIY projects on your part.
- Weigh the differences between your cost and that of the professional. It may seem more inexpensive to do it yourself at first, but if you don’t have all of the necessary equipment, expenses can add up quick.
DIY can be fun, enjoyable, and an excellent way to save money. But it can also lead to spending far more than the cost of the initial project if things go wrong that you aren’t able to fix correctly. Research your project thoroughly, and compare which path could be more beneficial to you. Either way, you’re bound to learn something new!