One major challenge when planning a home renovation is whether to DIY or hire a remodeling professional. Obviously, there are tradeoffs of choosing either, mainly in terms of money, time, and the outcome. Therefore, choosing to do it yourself or calling a pro revolves around your budget and personal confidence. With endless guiding resources, including books and how-to-videos, you may be tempted to undertake the project solo. However, you should analyze several factors before doing it yourself. Below are a few considerations that can help you figure out the best option.

Your Abilities

As you try deciding if you should hire a home improvement contractor or work on the renovation project yourself, begin with an honest evaluation of whether you can handle the task or not. Without a doubt, every renovation project requires some preparation and a completion timeline. Interestingly, both of these factors are not featured in most home improvement videos and TV shows.

Actually, if your trusted home improvement expert says that your renovation project will take between 1 and 3 months, the actual renovation may take between 2 and 6 months. That said, before stocking up your tools or choosing paint, implore your abilities to complete the project and achieve your expected result.

Consider if you can achieve the goal of your renovation with satisfaction without making some of the common home improvement mistakes. If chances are you won’t achieve your desired outcome, consider working with a renovation pro.

Cost of the Project

Price is undoubtedly the main factor that drives most homeowners into working on their projects. However, most limit their cost calculations by estimating the costs incurred by hiring the professional only. When calculating the total cost of your home improvement project, you should include the cost of supplies, replacements, and other miscellaneous expenses.

If most of the supplies required are affordable and there is minimal impact if the project doesn’t go as planned, such as replacing lights or simple painting projects, you can do it yourself. On the other hand, if the supplies are quite expensive and there are risks of ruining expensive supplies during the process, such as installing a household appliance, you will be better off calling a pro.

Apart from cost, you shouldn’t attempt dangerous projects. Don’t work on projects that can put your life in danger or risk your safety. For instance, avoid projects such as roof replacement or repairing electrical wirings unless you are adequately trained. Even though significant repairs might be costly, hospital bills are far much expensive.

Do You Have the Necessary Tools?

As mentioned before, every renovation project requires a set of tools to be completed. Therefore, even if you are a DIY enthusiast with a wide selection of tools at your disposal, some home improvement projects require special equipment. While working on a project that falls in your skillset might be easy, some projects require that you purchase expensive tools.

Compared to hiring a professional, buying a new tool won’t be prudent, especially since you will only use it once. Before starting the project, ensure that you assemble all the necessary tools. If you are missing some tools, do a random price check to compare the cost of buying the new tool versus hiring an expert.


Time to complete the project is another determining factor when deciding between working on the project or hiring a professional. Professionals concentrate and can complete the project within a short time. However, doing it yourself will require more time and effort, especially if you are doing this for the first time.

Besides the time taken on the actual project, you should factor in the hours, days, or weeks you will spend learning and mastering steps of the renovation process. Your time should also include time spent repairing inevitable errors and shopping around for supplies if they run out.

If your renovation project can be done over a long period and doesn’t appear complicated, you can work on the project yourself. However, if it needs to be completed sooner, it is prudent to call a pro.

Do You Need a Special License?

While some projects, such as installing a bathtub faucet or drywall, don’t require special training, some home improvements need special training. Some specialty home improvement jobs that require training include;

  • Roofing
  • Electrical wiring
  • Foundation repair
  • HVAC repair and replacement
  • New construction and framing
  • Plumbing

All the jobs mentioned require rigorous training, with some requiring certification, which most homeowners don’t have. If your renovation project falls under any of these, hiring a pro is a good idea.


Evidently, you can handle some home improvement projects yourself, while some are better left for professionals. Hopefully, this guide will leave you better informed on the tasks that you can attempt and those you should leave to renovation experts.

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