User-friendly, step-by-step directions are available for laying floors and tile, installing shelves and paneling, making curtains and blinds and creating soft furnishings. The secret of a successful project is not to aim too high on beginning projects. Learn to do simple, low cost projects first. After you build your skills and confidence, move on to bigger projects.
A redecorating project doesn’t have to set off flurries of worry or anxiety. Major remodeling efforts, such as putting up or taking down walls, rewiring electrical systems or adding a room, require at least the advice and counsel of a professional as well as more skills with tools and housing structures. Many decorating update projects, however, require only a commitment, a carefully laid plan and some shopping around for supplies.
Function and comfort are key factors to any project. Consider the way you live. Learn your likes and dislikes in home design. Put possibility thinking to work! Look at ideas that might work for you whether they are current trends or practical DIY investments.
For every DIY project there is a trade-off with time vs. money. Studies have shown that a project that takes a professional contractor 40 hours to do will take an expert amateur 48 hours, someone handy with some experience 60 hours and a beginner 80 hours. Learning to do skills well pays off in real $$$ savings!
Consider your own hourly wage for working on a project. Then figure out how long it will take to complete the project. Compare this cost with the cost of buying new or having the project done by someone else. Other questions to consider are:
Do I have that much time?
Will I like doing it or learn anything from it?
Do I have the skills to do it all?
Do I have someplace to go for advice if I get stuck in the middle of the project? Do I have the tools or can I borrow them?
Do I know what materials are needed?
Can I buy them at a reasonable cost?
Plan carefully. Never rush into a DIY project. The unexpected, unforeseen and unusual can and probably will happen.
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Paint a Room
A new coat of paint is one of the fastest and most economical ways to achieve an immediate and impressive change in a room’s look and feel.
Why it’s a great starter project: Painting is a must-have skill for any burgeoning DIYer. And whether you’re touching up a drywall patch or freshening up a guest room, painting is always the final touch that makes a project complete. Also, the great thing about painting a room is that if you don’t like the finished product, you can simply repaint it.
What it gives you an excuse to buy: There’s no shortage of great painting equipment you can buy to make the DIY experience go smoother. And if you’re just starting out, this is a great time to invest in a roller and pan, trim brush and clean-up equipment.
2×4 Bench Plans
Rule number one of a DIY home project is to have a plan in place. Take some time to look thoroughly at each area of the remodel and learn about what you’re about to undertake.
One area to start with is the price. You want to be able to finish any project you start and be sure you’ll be able to finance the project without taking on more debt than you can comfortably handle.
Take a look at average prices for the type of project you plan on completing.
Ready to get going? A few things to pay attention to are:
Timeline for a Typical Project. Some projects take just a day, and others can stretch on for weeks. If you plan on remodeling your bathroom or kitchen, what will do you if those rooms are unusable for days or weeks?
Parts and Materials. What are the materials and parts you will need to complete your project? Can you easily get those components? What are they usually made from? You are likely to find a range of materials available at a variety of price points. Learn as much as you can about the differences between each material and which is best for your project.
The Level of Skill and Special Equipment Needed. Will you need to hire someone to help out or can you fully DIY? Does it involve purchasing special tools that you might need extra training for? See if there are any workshops in your area that might provide some practice and time to learn before you begin work on your own home.
Risk Involved in the Project. Some renovation projects are best left to professionals. If you’re going to need to climb tall ladders, do anything with electricity, or handle a power saw, you might want to avoid the DIY route.
Your Goals for the Project. Knowing what you want to get out of a project will help you determine what you need to do during the process. If you want more space to cook, you might focus on improving your kitchen’s layout. If you want to save energy, you might install more efficient appliances or solar panels.
Your Space. It can be worth hiring a home inspector before you start a project so you know what you’re getting into. An inspector can let you know about any issues you might not see or be aware of that are worth fixing during your remodel.
Replace a Torn Window Screen
Whether it’s from a fallen branch, a pair of over-eager paws, or simple wear and tear, sooner or later most window screens will require a repair. And it’s possible to patch a small tear, but you can also replace an entire screen. This is a great beginner DIY home improvement that will help keep insects out of your home and make your windows or screen doors more attractive.
Why it’s a great starter project: Removing the window screen will help familiarize you with the mechanics of your windows. And this will come in handy down the road, when it’s time to do some maintenance on the windows themselves.
What it gives you an excuse to buy: The materials for this repair are inexpensive and will last for more than one window, which means you’ll have them on hand the next time a screen is damaged. A roll of replacement screening and the rubber spline that holds it in place are easily obtained. And a spline roller makes the replacement quick and easy. It’s possible to secure the spline without using a roller. Often times a flat screwdriver or old credit card can pop the spline into place. But the spline roller makes things go smoother and decreases the risk of damaging the spline during installation. And a spline roller lasts forever!
Gallery Wall Frames
Home decor author and blogger Laura Putnam recommended using your wall space, or “gallery walls” in a piece on her site about simple ways to decorate your home.
”Gallery walls have become very popular over the last few years. The great thing about them is that pretty much every single one of them is different,” Putnam said.
Just gather picture frames in various shapes and sizes and arrange art and personal photos on one central wall space. And don’t be afraid to paint your frames if you want them to match.
Need to create your own project? This PDF Guide shows all the things needed
There are so many DIY projects available to choose from I can often be tempted to start too many
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