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DIY Debates: What Don't You Know?


With home or garden renovation and remodeling projects, so much of it is about what you know. It’s about knowing what you want; your vision for the finished house; the budget you can afford; and how much time you will be able to give to completing the task. You try to know as much as possible, learn through tutorials, and make the best of it that you can.

That’s all good. Important. A big part of any successful home project.

However…

Did you ever consider the fact that the most important things for any such undertaking might, instead, be what you don’t know? Only by recognizing there are areas where your knowledge is in deficit can you truly avoid the most common problems that DIYers face - so, which of these sound familiar as gaps in your knowledge?

Cable and Pipe Catastrophe

Put simply, if you don’t know where the cables and pipes are in your home, then don’t go at the walls with a drill. Even for something as simple as hanging a picture; one slip and you could be in a whole world of trouble.

If you don’t know the placement of cables and pipes, then it’s relatively simple to find out. If you bought your house as a new build, then you might have access to the blueprints. These will show the exact outline of where everything is, so you can be sure to avoid the necessities.

If you’ve no such convenience, then you can find cable detectors and stud finders which scan through the walls and tell you where to avoid. They can take a bit of practice to get used to, though, so make sure you take your time rather than laying lack of knowledge on top of lack of knowledge!

Structural Strife

Do you know how your house is built? Do you know the impact of living on your foundations? Do you understand how your crawl space works? Do you understand why it’s there to begin with? Do you…

And on and on it can go, every question unveiling a new level of things you don’t know about the structural integrity of your home. And you know what? That’s okay! You’re not an architect or an engineer; you can’t be expected to understand the geometry that goes into house building or deep details about crawl space foundation repair methods! What’s more, you don’t need to know - because those are things best left to the professionals.

Understanding these gaps in your knowledge can be vital for a successful home project. There are certain things you will need help with; the structural side of things is but one example of a vital component of your home that you probably know very little about. Embrace your ignorance rather than making it worse by attempting to DIY something you know very little about.

Neighbor Nightmares

What do the neighbors think about your renovation plans? Are they okay with the idea that there’s going to be building noise emitting from your house at all hours?

If you can’t answer this question, then it’s imperative you do so before you begin any work. Sure, you want your house to be nice through the improvements. But what’s the point of a nice house if everyone on the street is giving you dirty looks every time they see you?

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