Home Improvement Mistakes

10 Surefire Ways to Avoid Common DIY Home Improvement Mistakes

Here are 10 surefire ways to avoid the top DIY home improvement mistakes in the future and ensure success.Ask people who have completed do-it-yourself projects and theyíll tell you that the projects took at least twice and much time and three times the money they thought they would. The basic reason is that DIYers usually make a lot of mistakes that end up making home improvement projects more expensive and time-consuming.


1. Take out the required permits, It ís amazing how many DIYers skip this step. Obviously, this is only required for jobs such as putting up buildings in your garden and yes, it takes time, and it means you have to deal with the council, but it’s actually in your best interest to make sure get the required home improvement permits. The staff in the council office will make sure the project is done correctly and that you stay safe in the process. If you’re unsure, call your local building department and ask.

2. Have all the tools and materials you need available before you start your project. Starting a job without the necessary tools and supplies will slow down the job and delay your progress. And make sure you buy quality tools. Theyíre a wise investment.

3. Prepare the job site for material deliveries, when your suppliers deliver materials, youíll want to make sure the job site is ready to accept them. You donít want your materials exposed to the weather while you are working and you want to have a storage area to prevent theft.

4. Don’t skimp on materials, for example, don’t use 1/4-inch drywall for building walls. Use at least 5/8-inch, and 3/4-inch works well for a good sound barrier. Use 3/4-inch plywood for sub-floors. It creates a much stronger floor.

5. Prepare the walls for painting, clean the walls, sand them and patch any holes before you paint. Use a coat of primer or stain blocker if you’re trying to cover over oil-based paint, stains or peeling paint, or if you’re painting a lighter colour over a darker colour.

6. Use the correct paint, use flat paint ceilings. Interior paints should have at least an eggshell or satin finish so you can scrub it. For outdoor decks, use a linseed-oil-based stain to drive the pigment into the wood and preserve it.

7. Keep safe while working ó you donít want to end up in the emergency room. Wear safety goggles when using power tools or working with drywall or wood. Wear a hard hat when you’re working with other people on scaffolding, and open some windows when you’re painting or staining, or stripping old finishes off of floors or walls. Don’t wear loose, hanging clothing, especially when using power tools. Wear gloves when carrying wood, metal and rock, or when hammering, and wear a nail or tool pouch to prevent damage to your floors, feet, and pets.

8. Measure twice and cut once, probably the most important rule of any project. If youíre going to make a mistake, make it too long. You can always make something shorter. You canít make it longer.

9. Know the limits of your abilities, youíre not going to be good at everything. If you donít have a lot of experience with plumbing or electrical work, for instance, donít attempt those projects.

10. Don’t start to learn how to do a project in your own house. If you want to learn how to do a project, offer your assistance to a friend who is an experienced DIYer or a contractor. And if you have any question about what youíre doing, make sure you stop and ask.

You probably wonít eliminate all of your DIY home improvement mistakes, but you can surely reduce them with these 10 tips.

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