Guest Blog Post: Ray Flynn
DIY home repairs are appealing for many reasons. One, you can save money. And two, it’s often fun to get your hands a little dirty, especially when your labor is building equity in your home. But what happens when something goes wrong? There are a handful of home repair projects that are better left to the experts—here are three.
Determining which jobs you should leave to the professionals is often the easy part. The next step, of course, is figuring out how to fund these projects. If you have some money saved up, you can dip into that well and be done with it. However, if you don’t have enough saved up or you simply don’t want to drain your savings, you could look into alternative methods.
One way that many people finance home repairs is through something called a cash out refinance, which, according to PennyMac, involves placing your mortgage with one that has a higher balance. The difference between the two is then “cashed out,” providing you with some money to take care of any home repairs you need to pay for.
Wood floors are appealing for their durability and straightforward maintenance. Plus, prospective buyers list wood floors high on their list of must-haves when shopping for a home. In fact, as Realtor explains, the return on investment (ROI) on wood floors is between 70 and 80 percent—an excellent value. But if your wood floors need extensive work, half your house may be off-limits while you muddle through the dust. Hiring a professional is the best choice, especially if you need to refinish older wood floors that have lost their appeal.
Filling a crack might not be an intimidating job for most DIYers. And plaster repair products are available almost everywhere. But if the cracking is extensive—or if it spiders out from central damage—you have a big challenge on your hands. It’s vital that you act as soon as you notice common plaster problems like cracks, discoloration, bubbling, or bulging.
Getting professional help with plaster wall repair is a smart decision because it can for a faster and higher-quality job. While many hardware store plastering products cover up holes and gaps, only trained professionals know how to manage structural problems and prevent holes from opening again as the house settles.
Plus, keeping an eye on resale values shows homeowners that DIY repairs often aren’t worth as much. And if the damage is severe, you might decide to replace the plaster with drywall—which involves even more elbow grease.
Depending on the size of your home and the roofing materials, you might think that a DIY job is feasible. Barring any fear of heights, you can scramble up the ladder and make quick work of it. Right? Unfortunately, roofing isn’t so simple—unless you’re a licensed expert. There’s a reason roofing companies have licenses and extensive insurance coverage, and it’s because things can and do go wrong.
Beyond the risk to your health and well-being, it’s better to leave roofing jobs to the experts because of the impact such work has on your home’s value. As CNBC notes, a replacement roof is one of the highest-value improvements you can make on your house; it could net you a 75 percent ROI.
If you’re selling your home, or just aiming to preserve its value, a new roof can make all the difference. It also helps enhance curb appeal, which could result in a quicker sale.
The type of materials on your existing roof also affects the job—and whether DIY is even possible. For a new shingle roof, for example, you can expect to pay between $4,870 and $6,750. Other types of materials cost more, however, and may require extensive knowledge to install.
Home improvement DIY's done right might give you a sense of accomplishment. But if things go wrong, you could be facing expensive repairs from the same experts you thought of calling the first time. Instead of attempting DIY, leave these three home repair must-do's to the professionals—and save yourself time and headaches.
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