Common Home Remodeling Projects: DIY vs. Pro
Charlotte homeowners often struggle with listing preparation – what improvements need to be done and which don’t. Some home improvements are highly personalized and can actually harm a Charlotte home seller more than it would if left unchanged. Then there’s the choice of DIY or hiring the professional. Because of the many choices out there and the unsolicited advice you’ll often get from ‘salesmen’ in the business, it’s highly recommended that you seek the advice of a licensed real estate agent before making ANY home improvements, especially if preparing your home for the market. We will likely be able to save you a LOT of money!
Here is a great bit of advice from our guest author, Eugene Williams of DIY Dad. For more information and other great resources about all things DIY, check out his website here.
Many homeowners have that one room in their house that just doesn’t fit their needs. Maybe it’s a kitchen with awkwardly arranged appliances or a bathroom with outdated decor. In 2016, nearly two-thirds of homeowners had expressed plans to renovate, according to an article on CNBC. A Harvard study showed that 40% had budgeted to spend $5,000 or more, and more than 20 percent had a budget with double that amount.
So, if you’re a homeowner planning a remodeling project; you’re not alone.
However, many homeowners find themselves wondering if these projects require a professional or can be taken on by a DIY weekend warrior. This is a common concern for many reasons — namely budget. But it’s important to remember that saving money could mean spending more time. Low cost can also sometimes result in low quality. On the other hand, hiring a contractor can be a safer choice, and create a stronger return on investment in the housing market.
Not sure what to do? Weigh your options for these four common home remodeling projects:
Bathrooms are the most common room remodeling project, according to the National Homebuilders Association. In 2012, 80 percent of homeowners remodeled a bathroom, some with a professional and others on their own. According to HomeAdvisor, the average price to remodel a bathroom in Charlotte is $7,938 – $16,041 and takes around 4-5 weeks to complete. Those who tackled the project themselves can save up to 50 percent of those costs, but often spend two to three times as long on the project. Bathrooms have complex systems, from electrical to plumbing; many homeowners don’t have the skills to replace a tub with a shower or install an additional sink. Those facing simpler projects, like painting, changing fixtures and resurfacing cabinets, have an easier time completing the project themselves.
The cost for hiring a professional to remodel a master bedroom can run from $2,500 to $10,000. This range is so large because of the differences in square footage of the room, the materials and tools needed, along with the types of upgrades planned. For example, tearing down wallpaper is much less expensive than tearing down a wall.
Homeowners spend more than an average of $20,000 on a remodeling their kitchens. Kitchens have a variety of renovation options. Some people need to upgrade their appliances, which can skyrocket a budget. Other kitchens need only surface remodels, like painting walls, upgrading sinks and refacing cabinets, which some homeowners take on as a DIY project. When it comes to knocking out walls, installing new countertops and floors, bringing in a professional can be a safer option.
Making Safety a Priority
A home remodel can be more than just paint on the walls and new hardware on doors. When you start getting into plumbing, electricity and structural changes, safety becomes a big factor as to why homeowners decide to go with a contractor. There two major reasons to consider safety a priority:
- More than 5,000 house fires a year result from faulty electrical equipment, according to the Electrical Safety Foundation International (ESFI).
- More than 200,000 people are injured each year doing DIY projects. Construction professionals have safety training, licenses and familiarity for the tools they use.
In addition, there are some financial safety risks to consider, as well. For example, some remodeling projects might require permits or inspections. A homeowner starting a DIY project may not know which permits to get and what they mean, risking paying steep fines and fees. Professional contractors know which permits are needed for specific projects.
Safety isn’t just about specialized skills — basic knowledge comes into play, too. Can you safely and properly knock down a wall so that you don’t damage an essential support? Are you able to safely clean up hazardous chemicals and dispose of them properly? Are you working on your project after a long, tiring day at work? How closely are you paying attention to making sure you’re following safety best practices? If your project requires this level of care, hiring someone with experience (and liability insurance!) might cost more upfront, but could cost less in the long run.
For more guidance in preparation of your Charlotte home sale, let’s talk! Give me a call or shoot me a text to (704) 491-3310 or email me at DebeM@remax.net.
Visit www.ListMyCharlotteHome.com if you’re thinking of selling your home in the Charlotte Metro region and make the right decision to hire a professional! I provide full-service real estate with award-winning customer service. I am also happy to provide references of any of our sellers for you to speak with about their experience. You can also read a few of our reviews at www.CharlotteRealEstateAgentReviews.com.