Money saving DIY projects are not only a great way to save, although that saving money is a great motivator. Learning to do some of the work around your home as a DIY project will also give you a sense of accomplishment.
There are plenty of money-saving DIY projects that even the novice can manage with a little bit of effort. DIY projects can easily become your favorite pastime. The typical homeowner plans on spending $10,000 on home improvements.
How Much Money Can You Save
There is a lot of money to be saved when you decide to take on DIY projects. When you hire someone to do the work for you. In some cases, it can be small savings that add up over a period of time.
When you consider how much of each project costs go to labor you can easily see how much savings you could be tapping into. Contractors have to charge for material costs, and for their time. In any case, the labor cost is much more than the material costs.
A good example is car repairs. A set of medium quality brakes can run about $200, the labor to install the new brakes can be about $300. Learning how to DIY these repairs can leave $300 in your pocket.
Another example of savings on labor costs is replacing a faucet. You can buy a medium grade kitchen faucet for about $100. If you have the plumber install it, you will pay an additional $150 for the installation.
Money saving DIY projects can help you to find the money that you need to complete more projects. Instead of just having the brake pads replaced on your car, you will have the money, to change the oil, and even fill the tank with gas.
Saving money by doing it yourself can help you funnel money into other projects or even toward recreational pursuits. Having that extra money without having to sacrifice the repair is a great feeling. Of course, you also will not have to put off necessary repairs and other projects waiting to build up the savings for it.
Tips For Managing DIY Projects
Getting organized early on in your projects will help to keep you on track. Make lists, do the research, and keep your tutorial that you are using nearby. The more organized you are the better off the project will come together.
Get friends and family involved, extra pairs of hands are always a welcome addition. A DIY project that involves everyone can be a fun way to get stuff done.
Track your expenses so they do not get out of control. Keep receipts to ensure if you need to return materials you can. Keeping good records of your purchases is also a fantastic way to see exactly how much you are saving.
Pick your projects carefully at least in the beginning. Remember, you want to be able to enjoy the success of a project well done.
Doable Common Projects
There is a litany of things that you can do around your place that are easy money saving DIY projects. For example, painting can be easy and is something that you can do on your own. A fresh coat of paint can vastly improve your space. You can pay upwards of $500 for a professional custom paint job that you can do yourself for about $150. Other options include managing window treatments like hanging blinds, shades, drapes, or curtains.
There are plenty of tutorials online that can help with money saving DIY projects. You can find tutorials for everything from decorating bay windows with the perfect window treatment to how to do your own flooring installation.
Of course, even with tutorials some projects need to be left to the professionals. For example, furnace service should be left to a professional simply because your furnace can present a risk of significant injury if it malfunctions. The better you become at DIY the better your results will be, and the more projects you can take on.
If you are new to DIY projects, you want to start with the easiest tasks to build your confidence and get a feel for how much work is involved with DIY. Here are some projects that are great as beginner DIY:
- Lawn care. Planting seeds, watering the lawn, spreading fertilizer, mowing, and trimming are all easy DIY projects. You can save quite a bit of money by not hiring a landscaper and taking a do it yourself approach.
- Managing simple maintenance tasks. Cleaning gutters, pressure washing sidewalks, and siding, changing batteries on fire alarms, and more can all be an easy DIY project.
- Lighting installation (think a single pendant light or a ceiling hugger porch light)
Money saving DIY projects do not have to be grand gestures to help you save. If you manage your own lawn needs, you can easily save around $200 a month or more. When you add in the cost savings from cleaning your own gutters, and doing your own pressure washing you can rack up easily another few hundred dollars in savings.
Making time for some of the simplest money saving DIY projects like changing your HVAC filters regularly on your own. You can pay up to $100 a month for a maintenance agreement with an HVAC company. Doing it yourself not only will save on maintenance costs but will also help you to save on wear and tear on your unit.
There are plenty of ways to save if you are willing to put the work in. Once you get your footing as a DIY specialist, you can move on to bigger projects.
Money Saving DIY Projects for the Intermediate Skill Set
So, you cut your teeth on simple DIY projects and you are ready to move on. Hold on a moment before you start rewiring your home, there are still a few things that you will want to leave up to the professionals, and here is why.
There can be impacts that you are not yet aware of if you forgo the electricians and decide to install some new wiring. Really big DIY projects like re-wiring your home, installing a new circuit panel, or even some large plumbing projects may need permits from your local building code office.
When you are making any “coded” changes whether it is a new addition or new electrical wiring, your area may require an application, an inspection, and a blueprint drawing to affect those changes. Of course, to change a light switch or repair an outlet, and other small projects will not need a permit.
Before you start any type of project that would normally require a plumbers certification like installing a new waste pipe or septic tank, you want to be sure you check with your local building code office. The same is true of any structural or big electrical changes you plan to make. The codes are in place for a reason, and you want to be sure that you follow those codes. Safety has to be a priority for your home.
Another unintended consequence of moving forward with the larger projects without a permit is that if something does go wrong your home insurance policy may not cover it. That’s right, if you throw caution to the wind and rewire the house and there is a mistake that results in a fire, your home insurance can refuse to pay out the damages.
Here are some intermediate money saving DIY projects that you do not need a permit for:
- Changing out plumbing fixtures. Once you have reached the intermediate stage of DIY expert level, changing out things like showerheads, faucets and even replacing toilets is a breeze and can save you a ton of money.
- Dealing with repairing simple heating problems is even possible when you get to the intermediate level of DIY repair. Of course, you should ensure that you do not take on jobs that are out of your scope in the name of safety.
- Drywalling and assembling simple structures. Putting together a shed, creating a paver patio space.
As your skillset expands your ability to manage more money saving DIY projects will expand. You will find that you have the confidence to take on bigger projects without having to call on the professionals to support the project.
Your skillset will continue to improve, and at some point, money saving DIY projects will just become how you manage your property needs. You will be able to take on the biggest projects with confidence.
Advance DIY Skills
Once you get your skills really polished, building that extension on the kitchen, replacing a whole house of wiring can be possible. There is nothing you can’t accomplish once you get your skillset up to par.
Some money saving DIY projects that you can do when you have advanced skills include:
- Changing the footprint of your home. With advanced skills, you can easily rearrange your kitchen or bath or any room and change your footprint.
- Adding new structures to your property.
- Complete plumbing overhaul and other overhauls for other systems.
Advancing your skillset happens when you practice more. You will learn how to utilize specialty tools. You will feel more confident in your ability to take on the really big projects. You will become a material expert and know where to get those materials.
Flipping houses will become a possibility. You will be able to manage big money saving DIY projects including things like replacing all the flooring in your home, remodeling your bathroom, and other big projects on your own.
Of course, you can still call on professionals when you need to, but the need will likely be a lot less than it is when you first start on your DIY path. If you want to realize tremendous cost savings it is polishing your DIY skills is the way to do it.
Not Everything Should Be On The Menu For DIY
No matter how good you get at money saving DIY projects there are still projects that you may want to leave up to the experts. For example, if you are not keen on dealing with building plans and getting permits, you may want to consult with a construction company before you pick up the hammer.
There is also a balance to figuring out what is really money saving DIY projects. In some cases, it can be less expensive to hire someone to do the job. Weighing out your options should include considering:
- The total material costs. Many times, contractors will pay less for materials which means even when they add in labor the job can be less costly than DIY.
- The amount of time the project will take. Time is money. How much time will you have to invest? How long will it take you to get the job done?
- Can you get the project done error-free.
If saving money is the goal you have to make sure that the savings is there. If you can get the materials and pay for the labor for just a few dollars more than what it will cost you to DIY it.
Time is also a factor you must consider. If you have a project that needs to be done ASAP because it is something that greatly affects the quality of your life, paying to have it done maybe the best choice. For example, if your heating goes out in the dead of winter, you need heat, if you do not have access to the materials that you need, you may have to pay.
Of course, if you have a big project planned, and your time situation changes, you may have to hire on someone to manage at least part of the project just in the name of time savings. Sometimes the money saving DIY projects are not saving as much money as you think.
One other case where getting the pros on board can be where you need building permits and need certified professionals to file those permits. It can be difficult to hand over the reins to a team of professionals when you have a great skill set but, in some cases, it is necessary.
Learning how to manage your own money saving DIY projects will change how you look at repairs, maintenance, and even remodels. Making money has never been easier than saving it in the first place. You do not have to pay out the nose to get basic needs around the hour and beyond.
Get your project plans in place and start enjoying the savings. It is a lot easier to get started than you think. Taking the first step is the hardest.