For many homeowners, do-it-yourself home renovation and repair projects are a source of considerable enjoyment and pride.

The best advice we can offer is to consider your own skills and abilities carefully when planning your projects. Getting in "over your head" can end up costing more money than hiring professional help in the first place.

  • Do you have any knowledge of building codes and good building practices which is essential for many projects?
  • Do you have the time to research, plan and do the work properly?
  • If required, do you know trade contractors and subtrades that will do a good job on your home? And will you be able to schedule their work without overlaps or lengthy delays?
  • If you act as your own contractor and hire someone to work for you, do you know how to protect yourself against liabilities in case of accidents or mistakes? Or against damage to your home in the course of the work?
  • Do you have the proper tools to do a good and attractive job?

If your primary reason to do the work yourself is to save money, talk to one or several renovators before you make a final decision. An experienced renovator may be able to suggest ways of reducing the cost of your project while still using professional services, such as modifying the design or substituting products. You can also save by doing the finishing work yourself, such as painting or wallpapering.