Have you ever been in that situation where you want a few jobs done around the house and get some quotes from professionals that make your eyes water and your jaw drop? More than likely you have and you’ve had to think very carefully about whether you should fork out your hard earned dollars for what you want done.
Maybe you should think again and work out what you could deal with yourself. Not all professionals are rip-off merchants by any means, and can often provide valuable work on bigger jobs, but there is so much you could do yourself. You’ll spend a lot less money by sourcing your own materials and because you don’t have to pay someone for their time you can put a bit away towards a holiday or a nice restaurant meal.
Many DIY jobs are easy to do and can make a real difference to your interior and exterior spaces, so here are a few ideas to consider.
Repaint your ceilings and walls
There’s nothing that gives a home a refreshing makeover more than painting your ceilings and walls. The secret is all in the planning. You don’t have to do everything at once, and if you have several rooms you need to pace yourself. Do one room at a time. That sounds obvious but it’s easy to get excited and make a start on two or three so you have to live with much more mess than you really want.
Discuss color schemes with family and take the time to look at what will work for each room. Light colors often work best for living areas and you can be more adventurous in bedrooms.
Always prepare ceilings and walls properly, rubbing them down and filling any cracks. You want surfaces that will easily take paint. Cover the floor with old sheets, especially important when you’re painting a ceiling, and use an undercoat before you put on the main colors. Your paint job will last longer and give an amazing lift to each room you do.
Plumbers are expensive and you need them for some of the bigger plumbing jobs, but there are plenty of small problems you can deal with without calling in an expert.
If your sink isn’t draining properly you’ll have some type of blockage. You should easily be able to remove the u-bend pipe underneath the sink to see if it’s blocked with food or grease remnants. Always put a bowl underneath before you take off the bend to catch any water from the downpipe.
If it’s not that, put a powerful chemical cleaner down the plughole, wait for the time stated on the instructions, and then run water through. If that fails too, check the exterior drain. It could have become blocked and thus backing up water. Remove any debris that could be causing the blockage.
Other things to try are using a plunger over the sink’s plughole that could help get rid of smaller obstacles and pour boiling water down to help loosen grease.
If your toilet cistern is leaking water into the bowl, switch your water off, flush the cistern so it’s empty, remove the central part inside that is screwed onto a rubber washer, and replace the washer. This is usually where a leakage happens. Make sure you screw the central cylinder back down very firmly to create a good seal for the washer.
Renew window coverings
You may think that fitting curtains, blinds or window shutters is a job for the pros, but you can renew your window coverings more easily than you might think.
Take window shutters for example. You can get a wide range of affordable shutters that you can install yourself. You just need to measure up carefully, choose from the many options available in terms of materials, colors and styles, and follow the installation instructions that come with them. It’s a very satisfying job to complete and will give any room a clean and stylish look as well as giving the option to let in as much or as little light as you want, especially if you have moveable slats.
Remember too that shutters can give extra insulation during colder temperatures.
Sometimes you have to use professionals for projects but there is so much you can do yourself that will not only mean a large saving in terms of costs but will also give you a great sense of achievement of a job well done.