To do it yourself or not to do it yourself… That is the question.

The do it yourself craze has no end. Home owners are taking their home improvements into their own hands for a number of reasons: cost, a sense of ownership, boredom. No matter why you’ve chosen to consider doing a project yourself, it’s important to know which projects should and should not be subject to the DIY approach.

How do you judge what should be done yourself?

The basis for judging what projects can be done yourself starts with looking at your level of comfort with the project itself. If you’re not comfortable with doing the project, do not go forth with the project alone. If you’re not feeling confident with whats in store, there is a greater chance that you will give up part-way, draw out timelines, or make a mistake. If you’re still set on not hiring a professional to get the job done, we suggest trying to find a friend or family member that has done the type of project before and can help you that way. From there, look at the level of difficulty of the project. Some DIYs are easier than others. Feel free to do simple projects yourself, while leaving the more complex ones for a professional. Highly complex projects can leave you skipping steps or getting frustrated. Finally, take a look at the level of risk. Even if it may cost more to hire a professional, doing a high-risk project yourself is not worth the savings.



DO NOT: Structural Changes

Structural changes can involve tearing down walls, or adding walls. This is a high risk project when you are not familiar with the build of your house. A wall could be load-bearing, which means the structural integrity of your home will falter if it is removed or damaged. Another issue with installing or removing walls is the fact that your walls house a number of different systems. You may have electrical wiring running through them, or other key functional systems. When you want to alter the structure of your home, its best to arrange having a professional visit your property for an assessment of the work at hand. The professional will be able to tell you what can and cannot be done with structural alteration, clarifying any confusion from the beginning. From there, they will be able to advise you on zoning requirements, building permit requirements, and, ultimately, completing the project.




DO: Painting

Painting the home does not necessarily need a professional’s touch. There are several online guides to help you achieve a professional finish without the added cost of labour. Preparation is the most important step when it comes to getting a flawless finish on your walls. This includes taping up any trims or wall fixtures that you do not want to paint over by accident, filling in patches or holes, and caulking any trims that have separated. You also want to get the proper materials. Speak to the home building store associate to ensure you get all the materials needed to complete your specific project from start to finish.



DO NOT: Electrical Work

Electrical work can get very complex very quickly. One small problem can lead to another problem, and next thing you know, you may have a large project on your hands. Due to the risk of electrocution its better not to attempt an electrical project if you do not have the experience. Instead, reach out to a qualified electrician to seek out professional service.



DO: Backsplash Installation

Backsplashes can transform the look of your kitchen. There are several easy solutions available on the market to make your backsplash installation. These options include: vinyl backsplashes, and peel-and-stick backsplash mosaic tiles. Since the project is relatively simple to execute, you can do this type of project yourself.



DO NOT: Driveway Paving

Paving the driveway may seem like a simple task to take on yourself, but it can actually be quite complex. It’s important to know how to deal with the several layers required to build a well-paved driveway. What isn’t immediately apparent is how much time and resources this type of project consumes. To pave the driveway, you would need several types of equipment (eg. a saw with stone cutting blades) in order to get the stones in just right. You would also need to be very attentive to timing in order to have all the layers set properly. All in all, a driveway paving project can throw the DIYer in for a loop. It is better to hire a professional to get the job done the right way.



DO: Décor

If you’re a Pinterest fanatic, you’ve surely been exposed to 100s of DIY projects for home improvement. Decorating your home is a great place to start if you want to get into the DIY lifestyle. There are several fantastic guides online to help you DIY your home from basement all the way to the attic. Several of these projects are low cost, low risk, and can be fit into a weekend. You’d be surprised with how much you can do with a mason jar!



Which projects have you taken on as a DIY?

The Greater Toronto Builders team has a network of professionals to take care of your project from concept to completion. Contact us today hear more about how our project design consultants can help you or to book a free consultation contact us at 647 35 BUILD or email us at

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Image Sources:

Feature Image 

Judging your DIY


Structural Alterations





Backsplash Installation

Driveway Paving



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