most-likely do-it-yourselfer mistakes
standard rule for do-it-yourself projects is that they will take twice as long
and cost three times as much as you expected. Or maybe it's take three times as
long and cost twice as much.
Either way, the reason is
the same. DIYers make mistakes. Lots of mistakes. The good news is that you can
learn a lot from mistakes. The bad news is that mistakes always wind up making
your home improvement project more expensive and more time-consuming than you
With that as a premise, Bankrate.com asked home improvement
experts for their lists of the top DIY goofs, with advice on how to avoid repeating
the errors in the future.
Our experts are:
Del Grande, host of DIY Network's 'Warehouse Warriors' show. A master plumber,
pipe fitter and fire-sprinkler fitter, Del Grande has more than 20 years of construction
Lou Manfredini, the official Ace Hardware 'Helpful
Hardware Man.' (You didn't think it was John Madden, did you?) The home improvement
expert for the NBC Today Show, the Chicago-based contractor also answers tons
of questions from DIYers on the Ace Hardware Web site.
Ramsel, owner of Unlimited Inc., in Miami, Fl., and home improvement contractor
to the stars, including Madonna, Rosie O'Donnell, Gloria Estefan and Ricky Martin.
Kavovit, owner of Anchor Construction, the largest woman-owned construction firm
in the country. Based in New York City, she's worked on Carnegie Hall, Bloomingdale's
and Sotheby's -- and sells a DIY tool kit especially designed for women.
Here are their top 10 DIY mistakes:
Not taking out the required
permits. This is a big issue with both Del Grande and Manfredini. Considered a
bother at best by many DIYers, permits actually serve a greater purpose than just
raising money for the government.
"People in permitting
offices aren't evil," notes Manfredini. "They're there to make sure
the job is done right and you don't hurt yourself."
for some jobs, such as putting in a wood stove, you need proof of the permit or
your insurance carrier won't cover it.
Not sure if your job
requires a permit? Del Grande says that the rule of thumb is that you need one
for anything larger than painting and wallpapering. It doesn't hurt to call the
building department and ask.
Nothing slows down a job more
than not having all the materials you need. Manfredini notes that one reason the
pros can do what they do is that they buy quality tools. "There's always
a bargain bin," he says. "It's not a wise investment. You lose time
Inadequate preparation of the job site. If
you do a small addition, they'll be delivering materials. You don't want them
out of order or exposed to weather while you are working, Del Grande says. Or
worse, they could be stolen if they're not properly stored. (If you have a septic
tank, make sure you know where it is. If a supplier delivering materials in a
heavy truck drives over it, you could be looking at a cracked tank. Yuck.)
continued at http://www.bankrate.com/brm/news/home-improvement/mistakes1.asp