What is DIY? Do it yourself!
We recently took on the project of replacing the carpeting in our living room with laminate flooring (something I had never done before). Yes, the simple and quick option would have been to pay someone else do it for us. However, with a little time investment there are SO many benefits of DIY!
The primary “hidden” benefits relate to having the kids involved and/or observing the work-in-progress. As any DIY’er knows, as soon as you start a project MANY interrelated projects pop-up.
You tear up the carpet and backing, then have to dispose of it. The floor may need leveling. You decide to refinish all the woodwork. You realize the electrical sockets, switches and plates as well as the ceiling lights are old/dingy and the color doesn’t match the newly finished woodwork and flooring. So, you replace them. You feel cold air coming through the gaps in the wall which were hidden by the carpet (geez, I think a small rodent could get through there!), so you caulk. And, finally, the installation of the floor and baseboard trim.
The entire process demonstrates to the kids self-sufficiency (you can do “just about” ANYTHING yourself). At the beginning of the project one of the kids asked “Are we going to get paid for this?” Before I could answer, my wife responds with “YEAH, FREE RENT!” What a team 🙂
Then there is the discomfort. “Geez Dad, there is no place to relax.” A clear incentive to chip in and “get’er done!” If we paid someone else to do it, the kids wouldn’t have the opportunity to actively participate in the process; it would seems mysterious (hmmm, I’m really not sure how all this stuff gets done. I must not be able to do it.). Every once in a while it is good for the kids to see the house all tore up, and then have them participate in putting it back together again!
The more selfish benefits include DIY being a significant, multi-day work-out! Not to mention, saving literally thousands of dollars on the entire process!
Yes, there are times when it may make sense to pay someone else to do it (large scale projects requiring heavy equipment and/or highly specialized skills). But, more often than not, household improvements and repairs fall into the DIY category. You CAN do it!