In an effort to save money and avoid having strangers traipsing in and out of your property, DIY renovations are sometimes a good idea. However, it is important to recognize your limitations and practice safety at all times. The first step is carefully considering costs and time constraints. This involves a lot of planning to prioritise your budget and separate projects into phases.
For major renovations it may be necessary to bring in contractors such as a building inspector, architect, and builder. Think along the lines of installing a new roof, rewiring, or adding an extension to your home. Unless you are an experienced builder, these major renovations are best left to relevant professionals.
Structural repairs are not something to take lightly. A structural engineer, builder or architect with the right experience is needed to ensure that structural integrity is maintained. Older homes that have already been upgraded may need inspection to check both the original and new structures. Your home is at risk if structures are not built to acceptable standards.
Demolition is a tough call as knocking down walls that are load bearing can compromise structural integrity. If you need to remove tiles, cabinets or appliances, you shouldn’t have to go to the expense of hiring a builder. If you are up for the challenge of a DIY demolition project, it is important to work slowly and methodically. If you run into any issues, consult with a professional before continuing the demolition phase.
One of the problems that you may encounter during renovations of your Northern Territory home is asbestos. Never attempt to remove asbestos and only hire a licensed asbestos removal specialist.
Gas, Electric and Plumbing
There are a large number of risks associated with gas, electric and plumbing repair or installation. Under no circumstances should you work with these systems if you are not a qualified professional. No amount of savings is worth risking your life over.
You should also check the Northern Territory government website for permit requirements. Most major renovations – especially those involving gas, electric and plumbing – will require permits. Hiring a qualified contractor who can do the required work may save you valuable time and money and ensure that the job is done correctly from the get go.
Cosmetic DIY Projects
If you want to make cosmetic changes in your home, DIY may be the way to go. You don’t need permits and there is less risk of injury involved. If you are confident enough to do plasterwork, brickwork, install tiles etc, you can find plenty of reliable online resources to keep you on the right track.
Other cosmetic DIY projects may include installing new flooring, appliances and cabinets. Painting is also an effective and affordable home improvement option. Don’t overextend yourself and only take on one project at a time.
Landscaping can be one of the most therapeutic and rewarding DIY projects. Planning your landscaping is an essential element of success. Again, you can find plenty of ideas for landscaping online. Unless you are planning on installing major features, you shouldn’t need any permits for landscaping work,
Speaking of major landscape features: Decking is a potential DIY project that can completely transform your yard. An outdoor living space will really improve family life and add value to your home. You do not need permits to install a swimming pool or spa but you should follow advice from the NT Government on safe installation.
If in doubt about whether a DIY project will require inspection and permits, you can consult with the experts from Houspect in the Northern Territory. Call today for guidance and services from a qualified building inspector.