My First Home Reno

by June 23, 2012
filed under Style

Home RenovationsI’d like to think I’m handy. I’d like to think I’m reasonable. But when you’re talking about home renos, all your endearing skills are apt to fly out the window to be replaced by a crazy person who’s fond of yelling and prone to throwing hammers.

After a one-year long bathroom renovation adventure where we redid most things twice, spent more money than we’d like to discuss and fought more than I’d like to admit, I have compiled a top 5 list of do-it-yourself do’s and don’ts:

  1. Start small: Start out with a small manageable 1-2 two-day project and see how it goes from there. Maybe you’ll decide painting is just not your thing or that you don’t love shrubbery in all its glorious forms. Point is to find out what you enjoy.
  2. Watch videos: If someone else has done it, they have made a video for it. Grouting my bathroom floor tiles was made a lot easier with clear video instruction. Be sure to compare a few videos to be certain of the accuracy of the information presented.
  3. Love love love your partner/friend/family member enough to say: We can’t work together anymore. Renos often don’t make for prime bonding time, especially when no one is an expert but everyone has an opinion. Frustrations can run high.
  4. Evaluate the costs of do-it-yourself versus hiring. The cost may be very similar. Even if it is a bit higher, you may decide that a little bit of extra money may be worth having all your weekends in July free, instead of toiling away installing insulation in the attic and feeling forever itchy.
  5. Be honest – if you can’t do it yourself, don’t. While I am one of those people that will try anything once, wants to learn how to do it myself, and would like to save money, tackling a big bathroom reno project with zero experience can end up costing you more money and stress than hiring someone. Be honest about your skillset and go from there. You can then build up those skills with smaller projects before tackling that outdoor swimming pool.

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