Home Renovation by Your Own: Is It Worth It?

Home Renovation

This is probably the most common question homeowners ask when planning to embark on a home renovation project.

Doing a home renovation or repair project by yourself could cut costs significantly – but only if you do it right. According to the 2019 US Census Bureau, around 37% of home improvement projects were done by homeowners.

Many homeowners prefer to go the DIY route because of the perceived financial incentive. For example, a pro-level kitchen renovation could cost you around $25,000, versus $16,000 for do-it-yourself level, according to home improvement magazine, The Spruce.

But while DIY projects are cost-effective, they may not be the best option in every home improvement project. Typically, DIY is ideal for minor projects but not for jobs that require advanced construction skills. An honest assessment of your handiness and the requirements of the job is vital before embarking on any home renovation or remodeling on your own.

Before you start a DIY home renovation job, take a complete look at the entire project – the costs, materials and equipment, and the skills needed. You need to take into account the maximum scope of work and how you’ll proceed given your daily schedule.

It pays to have a comprehensive plan as this will help you see the potential costs if you hire a general contractor and the savings if you do it yourself. According to home renovation contractors from AFS General, Florida, it is best to consult a professional when it comes to major projects that entail structural repairs, asbestos handling, and plumbing, electricity, and gas. Basically, any project that requires expertise is best left to professionals or contractors.

Overconfidence, lack of planning, and failure to fully assess the scope of a project can lead to a costlier, less satisfactory, or even botched DIY home project. A report by NerdWallet revealed that around 4 in 10 DIY home improvements end up badly. That said, you may be wondering what home renovation projects are worth doing on your own.

Here are some home remodeling projects or aspects you can DIY.

Assembling materials

You can reduce the total project cost if you purchase the materials, appliances, and equipment needed for the renovation. There are several home renovation materials that you can pick on your own like cabinetry, tiles, kitchen and bathroom fixtures, doors, furniture, etc. Instead of delegating this task to the contractor, you can start looking for cost-effective alternatives in flea shops or salvage yards.

Room rearrangement

Sometimes all that a home needs is a quick reshuffling of your home furnishings – and it’s something you can do. Rearranging the furniture and adding a few new fixtures can make your space fresh again. You may want to consider repainting some parts of the room to give it a different look.

Light demolition

While you should not attempt to use a chainsaw or jackhammer by yourself, light demolition works are doable on your own. Perhaps, you want to have a minimalist space with less cabinetry or furnishings. You can take down things like moldings, appliances, excess cabinets, carpeting, floorboards, and tile work. As long as you are not touching structural components, demolition should not affect the structural integrity of your home.

Any project that entails renovating the structure requires permitting approval. So, you’ll need to work with licensed contractors for such projects.


When it comes to home renovations, homeowners have the flexibility to make cosmetic changes or updates. Such renovation works don’t require permits. The Internet is also replete with DIY resources where you can find inspiration.

Some videos teach you how to repaint wooden furnishings, apply brick mortar or plaster, install tiling, recreate ceiling moldings, and many more. These are simple cosmetic projects that can have a tremendous impact on your living space.


While doing home renovations can be very tempting, you want to make sure that it is a worthwhile investment of time and money. Remember that such projects will entail costs even if you will be the one to make them. Not to mention, improper renovations may have unwanted effects on your property. So, before you proceed with any DIY home remodeling, make sure to study the project carefully. Better yet, consult a professional to help you make an informed decision.

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