Category: DIY

Home Decor And Maintenance

If you own a home for any length of time, you will probably plan to improve some aspect of it at some point, even if it’s just painting a door or a wall. And home improvement can also be a great hobby: it can build useful skills and give you a great sense of satisfaction. Of course, it can also improve the function and look of your home, provided it is done correctly!


Planning ahead is vital if you don’t want to waste money and time. Check out home decor and DIY magazines and books for ideas and inspiration. Give yourself some time to learn, rather than just jumping into action straight away. Take some design elements from pictures you see, and use other people’s ideas to help spark your creativity. You might even want to create a vision board or journal to keep ideas to think about.

It’s also important to remember that every piece of real estate is subject to building codes; without proper research, the requirements imposed by local codes and zoning regulations can present a nasty surprise to those who intend to do home maintenance or to make major improvements to their home, including removing walls, extending the building or converting a roof space or garage. You could find that your expensive work is not approved and have to spend money returning your house to the way it was!

When thinking about making a major renovation to your home, check the kind of return that you could hope to get from your investment, as some updates can be a bit of an overkill depending on the neighborhood you live in, especially if you might be thinking about selling your home within a couple of years of doing this renovation. If you do too much, you might not get your money back on the improvements you made. Also think about how any changes might affect your home’s resale value. For example, you might think about converting your garage into a living room to meet your immediate needs, but this might affect your chance of selling or the price you might get at a later date. Even if you don’t plan on selling immediately, circumstances can change, and you may have to spend additional money getting your home back to the way it was.

Getting The Work Done

If you have the time and the skills, you may plan to do all the work yourself, but if you need to bring someone in, don’t ever hire an unlicensed contractor. General contractors as well as sub contractors are required to have certification in most states. This does not guarantee competence, but it is legally required. If contractors are not adequately licensed and insured, you don’t want to hire them. Always insist on references before hiring a contractor to work on your home improvement project. Hiring a competent and experienced professional is worth the money to give you peace of mind that the job is done right the first time.

Tools And Materials

It is important to use the highest quality supplies and tools when doing a home improvement project. You may spend more initially, but you’ll save money down the road. Better quality products survive wear and tear and last longer. Tools can be expensive and you don’t want to have to replace them regularly.

Get The Basics Checked

Before you start remodeling or redecorating a room, bring in a professional for an electrical checkup. This is a legal requirement in some places. You also need to check the plumbing, to be sure that it is in good working condition. It’s no fun having to tear out a new floor or rip into a new wall, to make a repair that should have been done before doing the work.


If your house is an older one, you will need to check for asbestos before starting in to major work. For instance, if you have older floor tiles or a popcorn ceiling, it will need to be tested to see if it contains asbestos. Asbestos is a naturally occurring but harmful substance that requires extra care when it is removed and disposed of, but it is generally only harmful if disturbed. If you do find asbestos, you will need to hire a special crew, who are trained and licensed to remove it.


What does the siding on your home look like? Do you have an asbestos siding? If so, again, if you plan on removing it, whether to replace it with more modern siding or because it is in poor condition, you will need to hire a licensed asbestos removal contractor. The same goes for asbestos roof tiles or slates. If your roof is damaged and needs repaired, and the slates or tiles on it are asbestos, any damaged ones that need removed must be dealt with by a licensed contractor and disposed of properly.

DIY Remodel

Susan Cailliau, own photograph of own construction with own Bayko bricks, taken 2011-06-28 This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License. Picture modified by adding text.

There are a lot of things you could do yourself in this world whether it be a big house remodel or something else but part of getting it right first time is planning ahead to make sure you know what you want and that it can be done, whether by you alone, or with help.


Many people have probably already done something along the lines of what you plan to do. Look for their pictures, reports and plans of what they did and see if you can get some ideas that will fit with what you want to do. They will also have listed all the problems they met and solved along the way. learn from their mistakes. If you are not sure exactly what you want to do, create a vision board, with pictures of different options and think about what would work for you and what you can afford.

The do-it-yourself books that you can find out there may help you create a plan that works for you, whatever job you want to do. You can also find tutorials on the internet that help and videos to show you exactly how to carry out a particular job or use a particular tool. Don’t just go with the first book or tutorial or video offered, however. Before you trust a book or anything that you find online, you should look for different reviews on the resources you need. For instance, if you find a book about home improvements you may want to look it up on a website to see if you can find out if there are any reviews written about it. You don’t want to use a book that tells you how to do something completely wrong.


When you’re trying to do something yourself you need to have the right tools on hand. If you have tools already, then that is a good thing but you may need to get more specialized ones if the job calls for it. Make sure that you have the ability to order something on short notice or to get something at the store if you have to. If you are going to be shopping for tools make sure that you find the ones that are the highest in quality and won’t break down on you after a few uses and be sure that you can use them safely, with proper safety equipment if necessary.


Not only do you need the right tools when you are doing a job, you need the right materials for the job. If you are doing flooring, for instance, then you want to make sure you get the right tiles or the right wood. There are a lot of different types of materials for different types of jobs. You can generally find the highest quality options if you search for them and if you don’t necessarily go with the lowest priced options. Sometimes people think that by going with cheap options they are saving money, but these can tend to break down faster and cost you more in the long run because you have to keep replacing them.


Make sure that you plan everything you are going to do on paper before you start. You want to know when you are going to be able to begin and how long it will take for each step roughly. That way, you can make plans for your home to not be usable in certain aspects. You don’t want to, for instance, start working on the bathroom but not have a way to know when you can use it again.

DIY Remodeling

DIY projects can be fun and very productive and will give you a great sense of satisfaction if done the right way. They also have the potential for great danger, and overrunning on costs. It’s just a matter of getting together the right plan, the right materials and figuring out how to do the task the proper way. Don’t skimp on anything and you should end up with a good outcome.