D-I-Y or Contract It?

15 Nov

D-I-Y or Contract It?

There is no question that one of the most challenging aspects of owning a home is the ability to afford the unexpected maintenance costs. There are any number of things that can go wrong in your home at any given moment. Things like water leaks, appliance failures, heating and air issues, and electrical problems can result in very expensive service repair bills.

One of the most costly portions of any repair bill is likely to be the labor charges associated with the repair. As such, many people choose to do the repair themselves. While this can certainly save some money, here are some things to consider when attempting to do a repair on your own:

    • What you will save in money, you will lose in time. Consider what’s more valuable to you. Also, be honest with yourself and consider whether or not you will have the ambition to invest the time required to complete the repair quickly.
    • What is your experience level? Many people turn to internet resources in order to help them complete a job/repair that they are unfamiliar with. However, even with these resources, lack of experience can result in a more expensive issue if you are not totally confident that you can do the job correctly.
    • Do you have all of the necessary tools? If not, what you save in labor you may be spending in obtaining the tools necessary to complete the job. In this case, you lose time and money.
    • Do you need a permit to complete the job/repair? Some jobs, especially those involving electricity and gas, require city permits in order for you to do the repair. This will involve paying a permit fee, and allowing an inspector to review the job after it has been completed. Unless you have significant experience in these areas, consider hiring a contractor. They are typically held to higher standards and city inspectors can ensure you’ve received a high quality install.


If you ultimately decide to complete the repair yourself, remember that there is a wealth of information on the internet that can help you do the job correctly. Sites like Lowes.com and Homedepot.com usually include how-to videos on how to install or repair your appliances. Additionally, many companies will put how-to videos on youtube or vimeo, allowing you to benefit from tricks and tips they’ve learned through their experience.

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