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As we head into the 4th of July weekend, I thought I’d lighten things up a bit, so… Have you ever had a do-it-yourself disaster? I’m talking about cases where you tackled a project yourself in the name of saving money and wound up creating an even more expensive repair for yourself.
Know your limits
I’ll start by saying that I’m a fairly handy guy, and I thoroughly enjoy most do-it-yourself projects. Not only do I get the satisfaction of a job well done, but I also save a nice chunk of change as compared to paying someone else to do it. I do, however, have a pretty good sense of my limits, and I try not to tackle jobs that I’m likely to botch.
For example, while I’m happy to repair a leaky shower faucet, I tend to shy away from major car repairs. The reason for this is that I’m what you might call an “efficient” mechanic — I typically have extra parts left over when I’m finished. As such, I’m likely to end up doing more harm than good, and creating an expensive repair bill for myself.
The point here is that one of the most important do-it-yourself skills that you can develop is a healthy respect for your own limits. Yes, it’s important to have the right tools and quality materials, but… If you simply don’t have what it takes to get the job done, you might to end up with an even bigger repair bill on your hands than if you hadn’t tried in the first place.
A real-life example
Case in point… A few years back, a friend of the family moved into a new house and decided that the hardwood floors would look a bit better if they were refinished. Thinking that he’d save a good bit of money by doing it himself, he broke out the sander and got to work.
As stupid as this sounds, what he didn’t realize was that he actually had laminate flooring that was designed to look like hardwood. Not surprisingly, he ended up doing a good bit of damage to the flooring, and wound up having to pay to have the entire floor replaced.
What about you?
Do you have any examples of do-it-yourself projects where you would’ve been better off paying someone else? Please share them in the comments. If nothing else, it will give everyone a good laugh… 😉