First off, I’d like to acknowledge that I have not been a huge DIY person over the years. We all have our own interests and skills, and frankly I’m okay with some basics but that’s about it. So while I can do what I have to do, being a handyman isn’t really my passion.
On the other hand, saving money is a passion! This isn’t a newsflash to anyone who has read my posts here or elsewhere, but how it relates to home repairs is that it motivates me to find the most cost-effective way to handle situations. Or, maybe better put, I seek the approach that will give me the return on my time and money that will work best for me.
Thus, I can get interested in finding ways to save. Here are 3 DIY home repairs that could save a person some money versus paying to have them done:
Installing a Dimmer Switch
This might only cost $20 or so (for one switch), but getting an electrician to come out and do it would be cost prohibitive.
Naturally, it would be important to first stop the power to the switch before doing any work on it. When you do work on it, you might just need the dimmer switch, a screwdriver, and a voltage tester. There will be some work involving wires, but the whole thing might not take a whole lot more than an hour or so, excluding the time to buy the material of course.
Installing a Ceiling Fan
I suspect one could save $50 to $100 – or more – taking a DIY approach.
As with the dimmer switch, stop the power to this particular location, making sure no electricity is going there. Testing to make sure would seem like a good idea! Making sure that the fan is secured to an electric box on the ceiling is important, and a mounting bracket is a part of this process. One can put the fan together, in large part, on the ground before securing it above.
Of course this is a high level summary, and there are numerous steps involved. However, this could probably be done in one or two hours.
Freshening a Dishwasher
With many appliances, there are things that we can do to keep them working. In the case of the kitchen, home repairs like fixing a broken dishwasher can be performed yourself although you might need some instructions and help on that so check out some of these tips from Repair and Protect.
In these situations, one can open the machine and manually clean the screen on the bottom, and the sprayer as well. Running the machine with a dishwasher cleaner, as a next step (without anything else in there) can help with the cleaning. Why spend money on having someone handle a simple issue like this, when you can do it yourself.
Overall, it’s safe to say that there are many things that we can do ourselves to save money around the house. Of course, one should research the best (and most careful) ways to do such tasks, as well as make sure any major repairs are within local ordinances. For things that are more complicated, or if you simply don’t have the time or handy skills, there is no shame in hiring out.
Questions for You
Do you try to save money taking the DIY route?
Have you done any of the projects noted above?
What are some other DIY projects you have taken on, and how much do you think you saved?