Owning a home gives you a sense of control and responsibility over your property. You should be pretty comfortable performing basic maintenance and repairs around your home, especially if you want to save money. Yet, there are some home repair projects that should never be performed by anyone other than a licensed professional. If you need help deciding what to DIY and what to leave to the pros, here are some factors you should always consider.
Your Project May Require a Permit
If you’re a homeowner, it may not seem like such a big deal to build a brand new fence around your property. After all, owning a home means having more flexibility when it comes to updating and improving your property. Certain home repair projects, however, require permission from the local government in order to proceed without fines or interruptions.
Working with an experienced contractor on these projects will take the guesswork out of permit needs. Most licensed contractors will apply for these permits for you, or at least include the cost of necessary permits in any estimates they provide to homeowners.
You Could Cause Extensive Damage
There are so many repair and maintenance projects you can take care of on your own. It’s fairly simple to paint walls in your home or perform routine cleaning tasks, so you should feel confident tackling these projects without help from pros. What you don’t want to do, however, is to feel so confident that you take on home repairs that really should be left up to pros. For example, those electrical wires in your outlets can look like they are easy to work with, but a faulty repair or connection could result in devastating damages to your home or serious injuries. The same is true for roof repairs, major plumbing issues, and any project that requires skilled know-how and tools to complete. If you attempt these projects on your own, you are putting the integrity of your home, the well-being of your neighbors, and your own personal safety at risk. Even if a DIY project is not dangerous, you could still cause more damage to your home. If you have stains on your carpets, for example, you may be tempted to rent a steam cleaner to remove them. The use of heat, however, actually causes some stains to permanently bond to the fibers in your flooring. So, when in doubt, always call a professional.
Your DIY Repairs Could Impact Your Insurance
When you own a home, having proper insurance coverage is vital to offset repair costs or even to satisfy the conditions of your home loan. Getting the best coverage and rates is the best way to ensure you can maintain the appropriate policies. However, if you attempt any major home repairs yourself, you could actually be violating your homeowners insurance policy. Repairs done out of code or without permits are considered violations of your insurance agreement and could result in the cancellation of your current coverage.
Furthermore, even DIY repairs that do not completely void your insurance may lead to denials in coverages in the future. Not taking the proper precaution to prevent more damage, including hiring bonded contractors, is often considered neglect by insurance companies. In addition to not reimbursing or paying for the costs of repairs, your insurance provider can still use neglect as a reason to cancel your policy. That’s why it’s always smart to avoid the hassle and hire a professional contractor to perform major repairs and renovations on your home. Make sure to research local contractors and get price quotes online.
DIY repairs can help you save money, but they are not always your best move. For complex home repairs, you are always better off contacting a professional contractor. Going with a licensed professional will most certainly guarantee professional results and give you more resources if further issues arise in the future.