Hire a Handyman vs. DIY

Drywall Repair DIY“A little bit of elbow grease goes a long way” is the common motivation for planning home remodeling projects. It is true that there are many tasks that you can accomplish with not much more than a DIY guide and your own two hands. However, there are a great many projects that require the skill and expertise of a professional handyman.

The primary reason why many homeowners delve into home improvement on their own is the idea that not hiring a professional will save a significant amount of money. This assumption could prove to be fatal for the entire project if you fail to address a number of important considerations during the initial planning process, including whether you have the time and skill set to perform each step in a safe and cost-efficient manner.

When you are considering whether you should hire a handyman or do it yourself, there are a number of questions that you need to ask yourself first:

Do I have the right skills and tools for this home improvement task?

The first rule when deciding whether to take on a DIY home improvement project is to be aware not only of your strengths but also of your limits.

  1. Are you able to diagnose the full extent of the problem on your own?
  2. Do you know the full list of materials required to complete the project?
  3. Are you able to use the required tools safely?
  4. How severe are the consequences of making a mistake?

You might consider speaking to the experts at your local hardware store to help gauge what is truly involved in your desired project and whether you are able to do it on your own. It is also important to realize that the amount of time you spend on training yourself to do the work can be spent with greater efficiency by a trained handyman on performing the task at hand – and doing it correctly the first time.

What is the prospected cost and timing of the project?

Drywall Repair - Activities Preventing DIYWhere a DIY project may save you money, it will require a significant amount of time and effort. It is important to consider how much time you actually have available to work on home improvement, once you have added up the hours you spend on your day job, at-home responsibilities and other elements of life.

When engaging in home remodeling, it is inevitable that your home will look like a demolition site for a certain period of time. Thus, consider the scope of the project and the interference to your daily activities prior to deciding whether or not you should hire a handyman.

In addition, saving on the costs of labor will mean handling the costs of the tools and materials on your own. Professional contractors are able to purchase their materials at discount pricing, and they will only ask you to compensate for these costs in rare cases.

Can I handle the risks involved?

Drywall Repair - Risk HierarchyThis is perhaps the simplest yet most important consideration, as you certainly do not want to “jump off a cliff without a parachute.” For instance, performing roofing repairs or reworking your home’s electrical system as part of a major remodel could potentially kill you if you are not specially trained to handle the risks of the venture.

Other projects, such as plumbing or flooring installations, may compromise the structural integrity of your home if done incorrectly. In fact, such errors may destroy your home entirely if the problem goes unnoticed until the structure weakens to the point of breakage.

Depending on the zoning bylaws in your city, you may require to obtain a permit to perform any home improvement work. In some cases, you may not be able to obtain a permit unless you are working with a licensed handyman, depending on the scope of the work and the potential risks of the overall project.

Expert Insights

To further aid in your decision, we have asked some industry experts for their insights on the matter.

Allison Brady, Branding & Communications Manager at Houzz, states: “We’re seeing more people hire professionals for bathroom renovations in 2015-2016 (90%), relative to 2014-2015 (78%), according to the 2016 Houzz Bathroom Trends study.”

She adds, “Overall, we see that 85% of homeowners enlist professional help for their home renovation projects, according to the 2016 Houzz & Home Report.”

Drywall Repair and Painting

Now that you have gone through the list of questions for weighing the options of tackling home improvement yourself as opposed to hiring a handyman, take a look at how these considerations can be applied to a popular project like painting and drywall repair:

Even with no previous experience, painting is a simple job requiring little more than basic planning, a steady hand and a few hours of your time – depending on the size of the space being painted. Drywall repair, however, is an entirely different matter.

Water Damage

The state of Florida is notorious for its frequent rainfall, which leads to water damage in the walls and ceilings of many homes. While glaring water stains may seem easy to diagnose, the true extent of the damage requires the attention of a trained professional. This is an important prerequisite that must be completed prior to painting.

Tools and Equipment

The tools and equipment required for drywall repair can rarely be found in the average homeowner’s toolbox. Purchasing items such as a spackling compound, hand sander, drywall tape, and various application tools – among many others – could add up to hundreds of dollars. Adding the cost of labor and the cost of potential mistakes means that the total cost of DIY drywall repair will be equal to or higher than the same work performed by a professional handyman.

Time Frame

Furthermore, you likely have a series of daily obligations that will place your drywall repair in the background, to be completed during the odd weekend. Where a DIY project may stretch over weeks or months, doing no favors for your stress levels in the process, the same project done by a remodeling contractor can be completed in as little as 3 days!

If you are looking to perform home remodeling and would like to hire professional handyman services in Florida, The Handyman Company is only one call away. Our professional team of contractors are fully equipped and eager to take the stress out of any task that you cannot handle on your own.