Do it Yourself or Hire a Pro?

For some homeowners, one of the biggest decisions in a renovation project is whether to do it yourself or hire a professional. There are many factors that go into that decision, including researching, evaluating your skills, or interviewing and hiring a professional. Before you set your budget and meet with a designer, it’s best to know if you will be tackling the project yourself or hiring a contractor or professional installer.

Before you make a decision, answer the following questions:​

  • If you typically DIY projects, have you taken on a project of this nature and scope before?​
  • Are you comfortable using power tools, including a drill, table saw and miter box? Do you own these tools?​
  • Are you willing and able to pull required building permits and schedule inspections?
  • Do you have the time to start and finish the project? If you have a full-time job and an active family, can you make the time commitment without creating a hardship for yourself and your family?​
  • What if an estimated 3-week project takes you 6 weeks or more to complete? Can your family deal with the consequences and live without a kitchen for that long? ​
  • Think about the final results. Will you be happy with “good enough?”

If you answer “no” to any or all of these questions, you should seriously consider hiring a contractor or professional installer. ​

If you are a DIY enthusiast, you may still be thinking about what to do. Consider this:​

When it’s good to DIY:​

  • Projects that do not require electrical or plumbing, unless this is your area of expertise​
  • You are willing and able to pull required building permits and schedule ​inspections
  • You already have the skills and tools for the job requirements​
  • For the final results, good is good enough

When it’s best to hire a pro:​

  • Large projects which highly disrupt your home and everyday life​
  • Projects that require electrical, plumbing of HVAC​
  • Projects that require permits and inspections
  • Projects that involve structural work like moving walls​ or expanding beyond the current walls of your home
  • When the final results are really important to you​