When the new year rolls around, you might make some New Year’s resolutions to improve yourself or your life. But if you’re a homeowner, take this one step further and make some goals for your house.
Spending time on needed repairs and maintenance can increase the value of your home and keep it in excellent shape. But not everyone is handy around the house. And no matter how capable you are with a hammer, some repairs are best left to the professionals. So how do you decide if a type of repair is a DIY or one needing the skilled hands of an expert?
Read on and find out!
Air-seal windows and doors
Weatherstripping is a simple do-it-yourself project that can save you around 15 percent on your heating and cooling bill. It seals the air around your windows and doors, preventing air leaks. If you don’t know how to do this project, a simple online search can provide you with step-by-step instructions. Take care of this easy project and say goodbye to drafts during the cold days of winter.
After taking care of the weatherstripping, conduct a DIY energy audit, too. Perform a simple walk-through of your home to catch any issues with ventilation, heating and cooling and energy-efficient light bulbs. Make plans to reduce the energy used by appliances and electronics. You can do this by unplugging any electronics or appliances that aren’t being used.
Improving the exterior of your house
First impressions are important, so make your house look its best by sprucing up the exterior. Paint the front door a classic color like red or install new outdoor lighting. Plant new shrubs or flowers for your flower beds. Giving your house some serious curb appeal will increase your home’s value and make a dramatic statement.
Upgrade the faucets
Start out small by upgrading the faucets in the bathroom and kitchen. New faucets will add more bling to your sinks. This simple do-it-yourself project will transform your bathroom and kitchen. If you decide to try this, be sure you shut off the water valves before installing the new faucets.
Cleaning the dryer vent
Clothes dryers are notorious for causing house fires. When the dryer vent becomes clogged with lint, serious problems may occur. But keeping the vent clean of lint can prevent a devastating fire. Fortunately, this is an easy DIY project practically anyone can handle. A simple search online can provide you with step-by-step instructions. So take a bit of time to effectively clean the dryer vent and you reduce your chances of a house fire.
Organizing your home
One of the most basic DIY repair projects is home organization. An organized home makes life less stressful and helps save time. Finding clothes to wear to work, keeping track of bills and locating the pots and pans you need for cooking are just some of the reasons you need to tidy up your home. Devote a few weekends to the task, and you’ll find yourself feeling happier and more in control of your life.
Repairs you should never do on your own
It’s great if you decide to tackle simple home repairs. You save money and experience a sense of accomplishment. But sometimes doing your own repairs can be a bad idea. If you don’t know what you’re doing, you can do harm to your home or even yourself. In fact, that money you save by doing your own repairs might end up being spent on a professional to redo the work you attempted yourself.
Never try to attempt any electrical repairs on your own. According to House Repair guides, “there’s enough electricity in an electrical panel to kill you.” In fact, each year over 1,000 people die because of electrical shock and many of those accidents occur at home. Licensed electricians are trained to work with electrical panels and circuits.
You may not be terrified of heights, but that doesn’t mean it’s a good idea to climb up on the roof to make repairs. Whether it’s a steep or low-slope roof, homeowners can fall and get seriously hurt. Even climbing the ladder can be hazardous to your health. And if you manage to complete the repairs without incident, that still doesn’t mean you’ve done the job right. If the roof isn’t repaired correctly, water can leak into your home causing expensive water damage. Call a professional roofer to make sure the repairs are done the right way.
According to HomeAdvisor, “The sign of a true handyman is knowing when you’re in over your head. A do-it-yourselfer who is able to ask for help obviously values their home over their ego: it’s the sign of a true professional to know when to say when. If things get too big, complex or demanding, call a service professional to help with the project.”
No one can blame you for wanting to save money when it comes to doing repairs on your home. But it’s important to evaluate your skills and the tools you have on hand to complete the work. Trying to do repairs that are best left to the professionals can lead to a damaged home, serious injuries and costly medical bills. Before you pick up the hammer or climb that ladder, research the potential dangers and expenses. It will save you time, energy, money–and maybe even your life.