Leslie Cain: What could go wrong? Projects you shouldn’t do yourself
What could go wrong? Those famous last words have led nearly two-thirds of homeowners to regret not calling an expert on at least one home improvement project that they attempted to do themselves. This information was gathered from a recent study by ImproveNet, an online home improvement guide which surveyed 2,000 Americans last November. That said, do careful research regarding exactly what the project entails and determine if it is consistent with your skill level. Here are five renovations you may want to think twice about before starting on your own:
Major Plumbing Repairs
If you are a bit more of an advanced handyman or handywoman, you may feel comfortable taking on minor plumbing repairs such as installing a new faucet, or changing out a dishwasher. However, for major plumbing repairs, such as installing a new toilet or shower, consider hiring a professional.
Performing Electrical Work
Electrical is another area of home repair and improvement best left to a qualified, certified professional. On the average, there are more than 400 deaths per year resulting from faulty electrical wiring. Costs incurred to fix damaged light fittings, cables and switches can be more in the long run than hiring a qualified electrician in the first place.
If you consider yourself fairly handy, you might be able to complete a smaller tiling project that does not require any intricate cutting and positioning. However, you still need to be prepared to measure the tile correctly, cut edges and trim around items such as faucets, sinks, and piping.
Replacing the Roof
According to the National Safety Council, more than 6,000 people die each year from falls, mainly from tending to the roof and/or from cleaning the gutters. Projects involving tall ladders or scaffolding should be left to the professionals.
Refinishing the Floors
Sanding off the top layer of wood from your hardwood floors seems doable. However, sanding machines work best when operated by someone with experience and the right touch. Sanding one spot a few seconds too long can leave marks on the floor that can be difficult and expensive to fix.
Keep in mind, if you are doing a project yourself, do not skip obtaining a permit. If you are changing the footprint of your house, updating electrical wiring or adding fences or walls, you most likely need a permit.
For more homeowner information or to find a licensed real estate professional, contact the Sierra Nevada Realtors at 775-885-7200 or sierranevadarealtors.org. Sierra Nevada Realtors is the voice of real estate in Carson City and the surrounding areas. They are committed to building better communities throughout the region, and participating in the political process to protect the industry as well as private property rights.
Leslie Cain is president of Sierra Nevada Realtors and a Realtor with RE/MAX Realty Affiliates in Carson City. Cain has been active in the real estate industry for nearly 14 years and is very passionate about the Northern Nevada community. She holds several certifications including Certified Residential Specialist (CRS), Accredited Buyer’s Representative (ABR) and Senior’s Real Estate Specialist. Cain can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 775-781-1386.