Handy Homeowners: Leave This to the Pros


Handy Homeowners: Leave This to the Pros

by Amy Lignor


Being a self-reliant homeowner is a wonderful thing. It is also a far easier thing now that the Do-It-Yourself industry has grown so immensely. There are many TV shows on the air, as well as helpful videos on the Internet that give easy, concise directions on how to fix things that go wrong in the house, saving you money. However, although many DIY projects can pay off for the homeowner, there are others that occur that need to be left to the professionals. After all, there would not be professionals in these particular industries if the work could be done by simply looking at an Internet video.

In the state of New Mexico at this time, it seems that every other house along every road has a group of people crawling all over the rooftops with nail guns. Roof repair is the fourth most dangerous job of all time and should definitely be left up to the pros. It is a truth that dozens of professionals die in roof-related accidents every year (*states the Occupational Safety and Health Administration), so you being an amateur should not even attempt the job. And if you shrug your shoulders at that truth, it is also important to note that even if you manage to stay alive, roofing is complicated work. Putting roof repair/installation on your DIY list is a huge error in judgement; it’s almost certain you will not have the right tools for the job to be done correctly, let alone the know-how. Not to mention, attempting and failing at a DIY roof project could completely negate your warranty and homeowners insurance.


Another job landing on the list of “most fatal” comes in the form of electrical work. As it is with roofing, there would not be pros in the electrical field if they were not needed. Very few household projects allow for error, but electrical work allows for none whatsoever. One small lapse in concentration or one wrong move as the dog races through the room and bumps into your shoulder can turn a DIY project in this category into time spent at the hospital. On top of that, if you do take it on yourself and make a mess out of it, your house may just become one of the U.S.A.’s annual electrical fires that now total 50,000+.


Okay. So you’re extremely tired of looking at that ridiculous tree outside your window. Either it is dead, the branches are falling down, or the previous owner had the branches cut off, yet you are looking at an old, rotted stump sticking up out of the ground and ruining your yard. This will also affect the resale value of the home. But tree removal cannot be a DIY project for the handy homeowner. If you do not believe this, head to the Internet and look up the thousands of videos focused on “tree felling.” Even the tools required to remove the tree are dangerous. And if the tree falls where you did not intend it to, which is highly likely if you’re an amateur, it’s not out of the realm of possibility that the tree could end up through your roof, your car windows, or even come down on your head.


Installing appliances can be a good DIY project for the homeowner. One that is not, however, is when you take it upon yourself to install gas appliances. Mistakes cannot be made when dealing with something that’s both combustible and poisonous. Always seek a professional to do the job instead of taking the chance that your house will be reduced to kindling.


When it comes to plumbing, there are many DIY projects that most certainly can be completed by the handy homeowner. But when you’re talking about significant plumbing work, you are talking about a complex job that, if done amateurishly, can bring about costly repairs and potential water damage.


The tree is cut down and hauled away by a professional. There is a new roof on the house, put on by a professional crew, so now it’s time to make the driveway look a whole lot better. Even though to most people putting in a paved driveway looks easy, if you hire an experienced crew, the project can actually be done in a single day. For an amateur, you are talking about far more than a day. This is a time-consuming, labor-intensive job that is likely to crack, shift, or come out completely uneven.


As stated in the beginning, being that self-reliant homeowner is a wonderful thing, but being one with common sense who knows their limits, is even better.




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