In a world of Pinterest, Instagram, and websites aimed at DIY home improvement projects, a lot of homeowners may feel empowered, inspired, or challenged to take on their home projects, rather than hiring a Pro. And there are times when this can save you money and give you a great sense of satisfaction. Doing everything yourself isn’t always practical, however, and can even get you into serious trouble from time to time. So when should you do it yourself and when should you hire a Pro? Every situation is going to be slightly different depending on your home, your experience, and the type of project you’re going to undertake. Follow these basic guidelines to help you make the right determination when you aren’t sure.

Permits and Inspections

If the job that you’re undertaking requires you to pull a permit with your town, you may want to consider hiring a Pro even if you’re confident that you can do the job. When you pull a permit, your home will be inspected at the end of the job to make sure that the project followed state and local building codes. Unless you’re a professional who has working knowledge of these codes, you could overlook something that could cause your home to fail its inspection. When this happens you will have to pay a Pro to come in and fix things, so hiring one from the get-go makes the most sense.

Time and Money

A lot of people think that doing a project themselves is going to save them a lot of money, and in some cases, this may be true. You need to weigh the cost of the Pro against a few different things, however, to find out how much you’re truly going to save.

The first is time. A Pro will likely be able to tackle this job a lot faster than you can. Are you willing to potentially give up access to certain areas of your home for days or weeks longer than it would take a Pro to do the job? And can you commit yourself to whole weekends spent on a project? Something small like a kitchen backsplash won’t take more than a single weekend and won’t impede access to the rest of your kitchen, but tearing out your mudroom floor and installing a new one could take you two or three weekends to complete and will mean you don’t have access during this time.

The second consideration is how much you’ll be spending on tools to complete the job. Pros already have a whole arsenal of tools at their disposal, and they can usually tell right at the beginning which ones will be necessary to get the job done. Unless you already have these tools as well, you need to factor their purchase or rental into your final budget. And if you do purchase these tools, you may want to consider if you’ll be using them again for future projects or if this is a one-time thing to truly determine their cost.

Finally, you need to consider the cost of the Pro to come in and take care of things if you make a mistake, fail an inspection, or get in over your head. Again, some small projects won’t be an issue, but large projects may require a safety net to ensure that they get done properly. If you add in the cost of tools and time, then think about the cost of the Pro to fix things later, and you may find that it’s smarter to simply hire the Pro right from the beginning.


There are many small DIY home improvement jobs that anyone can handle no matter their experience. Unfortunately, there are many more jobs that do require at least a passing acquaintance to be done correctly. While you may be up to the challenge, if you’ve never worked with plumbing, or electric wiring before, you could get in over your head quickly. Be honest with yourself before you begin and remember that it’s cheaper to hire a Pro in the beginning than it is to hire one midway through the job.

Get the Right Person for the Job

Sometimes the reason behind a DIY job is the feeling that you’ll never find the right person to do it for you. Screening Pros and trying to find the right one whether you’re at the beginning or the end of a project can be stressful. Our matching system makes it easy for you to hire a qualified professional that can get your job done right. Sign up today to get started.