A recent survey of Porch reveals that DIY projects can cause disagreements between couples (to put it mildly), and some of these discussions can get quite heated. Whether DIYers are married or at another stage in their relationship, fights between couples are quite common during a DIY project. Sometimes they fight over whether the other person made a mistake or not. They also fight over the direction or duration of the project, the cost or the bottom line.
As a general rule of thumb, it’s important that couples don’t bite off more than they can chew, and that’s advice for budget and work, according to Michael DiMartino, senior vice president of facility facilities. Remodeling of electric homes in Chester, PA.
“This is an area where I see couples struggle a lot during the remodeling process, both DIY and professional,” he says. “Often times, homeowners choose to do a DIY project because they believe it will save them money. But if they take too much, too fast, it can become overwhelming, ”says Di Martino.
“Especially with older homes, I recommend breaking down the long list of remodeling jobs into smaller ones, thinking carefully about what can be accomplished in the next three months, six months, and twelve months,” he says. “Prioritize urgent projects, big or small, first.” In fact, when buying a repair home, know where to draw the line before it becomes a money pit.
Below are the DIY projects most likely to cause disagreements and the percentage of respondents who admitted that they did indeed fight before, during, or after the project. In addition to DiMartino, Freshome also asked some experts to assess why these projects could lead to complications and discussions.
Electrical wiring or rewiring: 43.6%
Our experts agree that the chance of serious mistakes outweighs the money you can save. “I always recommend that people avoid doing DIY electrical work because the consequences of a poorly done job can be as simple as a malfunctioning light or as extreme as a hidden fire source,” cautions Nathan Outlaw, president of Onvico, a construction company in Thomasville, GA.
It may seem like a simple project, but Mark Scott, president of Constructors Mark IV, which builds luxury homes in Bethesda, MD and Washington, DC., cautions that there are more than a handful of mistakes you could make when undertaking an electrical project. “Not only is it unsafe, but it could cost you much more to repair than you ultimately saved by taking on the project yourself.”
With so much at stake, it is not surprising that couples are arguing about this project. “I always recommend that my clients save their energy and effort for a project where the consequences of incorrect or incomplete work do not have the potential to be serious,” says DiMartino.
Hang or patch drywall: 41.7%
This is not a difficult project, so why would it lead to so many disagreements? Unless you have a lot of practice, it can be difficult to achieve a high-quality finish, ”says Outlaw. “Hanging drywall is something that is easy for DIYers to start and difficult to finish. Even a good-looking patch can withstand multiple layers of drywall with sanding. ”While he says the hanging technique is not difficult to learn, Outlaw cautions that it can be tough and dusty work, and that most people don’t. enjoy doing it.
That’s why Michael McDermott, Owner / Production Manager at CRD Design Build in Seattle, WA, has no hard time believing that this project may create conflict in relationships. “There is a reason that general contractors almost never have their own drywall hanging kits. They pretty much always give that task to professional drywall subcontractors, because it’s extremely dusty physical work that usually takes even skilled people much longer than expected. “If you’re doing anything besides minor drywall patches, McDermott recommended to hang, stick and mud to a professional.
Installation of a ceiling fan: 38.2%
Although this borders on the electrical work side, Scott believes it is a fairly simple project that any couple could take on. “If you don’t have a lot of experience with this type of project, we recommend ‘easy install’ ceiling fans, which often come 90% assembled and only require the homeowner to click the different parts (blades, bowl) on their place. “However, as with any new fixture, he says you have to prove that the ceiling box can support the weight of the new fan.” That is a mistake that can lead to serious damage that is costly and dangerous, “warns Scott.
Exterior paint: 32.7%
It sounds like an easy project, but it can be more complicated than you think. “One thing that is important to paint properly is proper prep work. Many DIYers find they are not applying the correct paint or primer for an exterior application, which can lead to flaking, mildew problems or just an unprofessional look, ”says Outlaw.
And there are other considerations if you want to get the job done right. “When working on the side of the house or on the roof, make sure you have someone to hold the bottom of the ladder so you can be sure to complete the project safely,” advises Scott. Additionally, you can run into a variety of problems if you don’t know the proper temperature range for exterior paint.
Floor installation: 30.0%
Our experts believe that installing flooring is a very do-it-yourself DIY project, but there are some caveats. “Proper flooring installation also comes down to preparation. The existing subfloor or concrete slab may need to be leveled or repaired, ”Outlaw explains. “Use tape measures, start or lay from the center of the room, and use gaps when laying tiles.”
Scott agrees that DIYers can do it, reiterating that measurement is critical. “This is a remodeling case where it is not okay to take shortcuts. Making sure you have the correct measurements, especially near obstacles such as chimneys or islands, is crucial to the success of the project ”. Scott recommends consulting a remodel professional or someone at a local hardware store if you have any questions.