Many people watch the DIY network and reality shows like Fixer Upper (I know you love Chip and Jo!) or Love It or List It. When watching these shows, many people see themselves, they see their home (current or dream home) and think: "Wow! I can totally do this myself!" I mean it’s called the DIY Network, right?? "Cmon Honey! Let’s tackle this over the weekend!"
Maybe you can do it all! We applaud you because the majority of folks simply cannot perform at that skill or patience level! If you’re one of the majority and can’t do all of the DIY’s, maybe you can do part of it. But which part? If I’m hiring a contractor in San Antonio, which part will save me the most money but are still doable?
FIRST work with a local San Antonio remodeler before starting anything! A good remodeler will give you tips on which part of the project you can easily tackle. He will also instruct you on how to do this project correctly!
Demolition is probably the easiest thing to tackle! We can give you some tips on how to do it safely and how it can save some money.! Doing your own demo might not save as much as you think but, hey...every little bit helps.
One question we get asked a lot is "Do you have to have a license to do DIY in San Antonio?." The answer is NO! But the work does need to be done up to code and get inspected. If it is not done correctly you will have to either figure out how to fix it or hire a contractor (which you could’ve done in the first place).
IF you are going to go through with doing the demo, here are a few tips:
- Get appropriate PPE (Personal Protective Equipment)
- Do lead and asbestos testing. These are serious health hazards and can be found in the most random places like glue in the vinyl flooring.
- Have the whole plan lined out! We can help you with this. We don’t want you to end up doing things that will end up costing more in the future.
Here are some other ways to save:
- Do your own clean up. This could save you $300 to $500 right there. Again, every little bit can help.
- Consider alternative products. You don’t have to buy marble or travertine. With modern technology, there are similar products that look exactly the same for less and actually out-perform the originals.
- Do your own painting. We can guide you thru the process to do a good job. This one will actually save you a good chunk of money!
- Moving out of your house during the project. On a big project this will definitely save you money. The contractor can move a lot faster with the home owner out of the house.
What if I buy the material? It’s on sale right now so I might as well snatch it up, right? NOPE! There will always be sales! We highly recommend not buying your own material for the following reasons:
- The material you are buying may not be the quality you need for this type of project.
- It may not be the product you would use for this project. For example, the tile that you see isn’t made for water but you want it to go in the shower. Another common example is that this tile has glass in it and it will end up showing the grout underneath. It will completely change the look of the tile and you won’t like it.
- A lot of times the contractor will be able to buy these materials at the same discount you see or EVEN BETTER.
- If you buy them, you are responsible for the material now. You must store them; you must deal with the leftover product or locate more if you didn’t buy enough. Obtaining the same material and dye lot might not be possible, leaving you with unprofessional results!
Another thing you don’t want to do is refurbish cabinets that aren’t worth saving. Painting stain-grade cabinets will not give the same quality results that a paint-grade cabinet will. And if you're putting too much into cabinets like that or that have poor hinges, hardware and drawer guides or out of style doors you may just be putting lipstick on a pig! Just not worth it!