Should you DIY your home renovation?

Summer is just around the corner for Australians, and already many men of the house are breaking out the new tools and rolling up their sleeves to take on household projects that require repairs and renovation. Summertime is do-it-yourself (DIY) home improvements time as far as these men are concerned.

Taking the DIY route, in all fairness, is an admirable thing. There’s just something so rewarding about building or creating something with your own two hands.

But before you fire up the tools, perhaps you want to consider the following and ask yourself, “is it really worth it and am I really saving money”? Is it wise to DIY or not?

Over $380 million for bungled DIY jobs

A Tradie Trends Report by online portal Gumtree in 2013 says that more than $380 million has been spent by homeowners on tradies for fixing poorly-done do-it-yourself home improvements. With more than one in five homeowners with bungled DIY jobs, that figure is far from being surprising.

Even more worrisome is the fact that injuries related to do-it-yourself home improvements are pretty common. Drilling accidents, structural collapses or simple ladder falls typically follow many do-it-yourself home improvements. More often than not, doing home renovations and repairs by yourself becomes costlier, both financially and health-wise, in the end.

To give you a clearer picture on how DIY home improvements compare to hiring a professional tradesperson, here are a few factors to ponder:


DIY home improvements take a lot of your time, and will likely force you to take some time off from work for weeks, even months for larger renovation projects. Compare the loss of income or annual leave credits to the cost of hiring a professional tradesperson to do the job for you to see which option is the less expensive one for you.

Safety issues

Diving into DIY home improvements without the right experience, preparation and safety equipment could easily result in injuries not only to yourself but to other people in your household as well. Professional tradespeople, on the other hand, are quite experienced in their given trade and are expected to have the right safety gear for any situation at all times.

The job takes longer to complete

With the limited time you have for working on your DIY project, the job will certainly take longer to finish. Hiring a professional tradesperson to do the job right from the start, and in far less time.

Your skills

Inexperience can cause renovation costs to spiral especially if it results in shortcomings that may fail to pass a building inspection. In fact, it could be emotionally and financially draining if this occurs.   Not to mention, it is more costly to for a tradesperson to complete a botched up job than if you hired them in the first place! Experienced tradespeople are certified experts in their fields and can help ensure all the correct regulations are followed and get the job done right from “hello”.

Home Renovation to DIY or to find a trusted builder, painter, plumber

The value of your house

If you’re planning to sell your house in the future, you need to realise that bungled DIY jobs can cause the value of your home to plummet- just ask your local real estate agent! Unfortunately, quality shortcomings do not go unnoticed and could scare off potential buyers. In contrast, a quality renovation done by professional tradespeople is a great selling point for the house and has the potential to significantly help boost the house’s selling price.

There is no doubt that DIY home improvements really offer a very rewarding experience. However, you need to be aware of your limitations as far as quality, safety, and added value are concerned. While it’s true that some home projects can be easily done with your own two hands, most larger home repair and renovation jobs are best left to the professionals.

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