To Do It Yourself Or Not To Do It Yourself?
Are you a do-it-yourself type? Do you aspire to be? With the increased specialization of labor in today’s workforce, the character of the jack-of-all-trades handyman is disappearing. You may want to save money on a job by doing it yourself, but is it always cheaper? Even if it costs less, will the savings be worth the time you spent on it? Several factors can help determine whether you should tackle the challenge or stick to what you know and leave the rest to the pros.
Do you have the skills?
Do you know what the project requires, or could you learn by doing a little research? Are you prepared for unexpected complications with the project? There are plenty of resources out there for those who are willing to learn, but some skills require experience, practice and finesse that you won’t learn in a week. Also consider if you would be proud of the job you did yourself, or if you would rather trust
Do you have the tools?
Once you have the skills, you need the equipment for the job. If you have the equipment or can borrow it from a friend or neighbor, then you can go ahead with confidence. However, if you have to buy all new power tools for the job and you only use them once, the project will probably cost you a lot more overall than if you had hired a professional.
Do you have the time?
Will you be able to complete the project just working nights and weekends or taking a few vacation days off work to finish it? If you have great enthusiasm starting a project and your motivation wanes as time goes on, a do-it-yourself job may turn into a half-finished nuisance you’d rather be rid of. Before starting, estimate a best case, worst case and most likely case for how long the project will take. If it seems likely to take more time than you can reasonably commit, outsourcing is best.
Is there danger involved?
There are some situations in which the potential danger far outweighs the potential benefits of doing the job yourself. Some work that you should never do yourself unless you are a professional in the field: electrical repairs, plumbing, asbestos removal, gas appliance repair and roofing. Safety always comes first, and an expert will do the job correctly without risking injury or damage to your home.
Is it worth the time?
How do you value your time? Is the task something you would enjoy doing yourself, or are there other ways you would rather spend your time and resources? Consider the time you would spend as hiring yourself. Put a monetary value on your time, a cost per hour for your time. Compare the cost estimate from a professional to the hours required for you to do it yourself. Considering the numbers along with less tangible factors will help you feel confident in your decision.