DIY or Hire a Contractor – Home Improvement Projects Better Left to the Pros

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Here you are with a full workload at work, activities galore with the kids, weekend trips planned or visitors coming to stay with you and a huge home improvement project just waiting to get done. This is when you assess – do I try to do this myself or should I call in the pros? Aside from the issue of time, there are also the issues of expertise and resources.

If you’re anything like me, most home improvement projects are better left to the pros. But for many of you, there are some projects that you can reasonably accomplish while some others are simply beyond your ability (either that or you don’t have the right tools and the tools themselves will cost you as much as the contractor!).

If you’re at the point of assessing: DIY or Hire a Contractor – we’ve come up with a list of home improvement projects better left to the pros. We hope this helps a little in your decision-making process (or helps justify your choice to hire a contractor!).


Maybe you can replace the flapper in your toilet or change out the shower head, but when it comes to leaky pipes or even replacing a full faucet, better leave it to the pros. A plumbing mistake or miscalculation can surely cost you a lot more money in the end.

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Beyond light bulbs, light fixtures or even ceiling fans, I would say to call the pros. If you don’t know what you’re doing with electrical work and you don’t take the time to learn all you need to know, you can severely injure yourself or risk a fire in your home.


There are some types of flooring that can be done DIY (I’m talking about those fake tiles that are essentially big stickers that you can peel and stick over your subfloor) but when it comes to hardwood or tiling, it’s time to call the pros. My husband tiled a floor in our first home and luckily had a friend with experience in cement mixing to help him out. We learned a lot about cement an wonderboard and I’m pretty sure that’s the last tile floor he’ll attempt DIY.


There are so many expert and efficient roofers out there with the right licenses and insurance that it just makes sense to hire a professional roofer for your roof repair and re-roofing project. Maybe you can replace a torn shingle or two, but beyond that, we would recommend calling in the pros.

Those topics seem to me to be the most prone to danger, injury, or costly mistakes which is why we suggest calling in the pros for these jobs. If you’re finally getting around to spring cleaning and simply want to identify why your living room carpet smells like cat pee, then you can visit your local hardware store and rent a black light to help spotlight all the places where your cat did indeed pee on the carpet (DIY). If you then want to replace your wall-to-wall carpeting with a hardwood floor, call a pro (Contractor). That’s our 2 cents.

Anna Platz is an Editor at, a leading mortgage rate research website, as well as the Lead Contributor to, a blog about budgeting and personal finance. Anna is immersed in the world of real estate, mortgage, and home financing and is here to provide valuable resources for homeowners and soon-to-be-homeowners on buying and selling real estate, researching a mortgage broker or lender, and securing a home loan. Check back often for news, updates, and remember that you can find today's current mortgage rates at My Google Profile+

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