To DIY or to not DIY?

Apr 9, 2018 | Covered Porch, DIY, Home, Projects

I love the satisfaction of a job well done, especially if I’ve done the work.  But, let’s be honest, there are some jobs that people do that they loath.  For example, I would love to subcontract getting my daughter out of bed in the morning for school.  Seriously, if there was a service out there where someone would noiselessly creep into my house and bullhorn my daughter awake while the rest of us could go about our business undisturbed, I would pay good money for that.  Sign. Me. Up.

But there’s not.  So, to make up for having to do that (and other crappy jobs… laundry anyone?), I contract out DIY items that although I know how to do, I don’t necessarily want to do, or even worse, that I dread.  Because there IS a service for that.  It’s called my hard-working, extremely affordable handyman.

This is not my handyman.  My handyman is shorter, Hispanic, and a man.  I thought it weird to ask him for a photo to post on my blog and this smiling stock image of a contractor gives you a good idea of what my handyman looks like if you just picture the opposite.

So, this is how I figure what to do myself v. hire out.

  1.  I go through each room in my house and list what needs to be done.
  2. Then I try to tackle all the jobs myself but give myself a time limit of say a couple months.
  3. If there are still jobs left after my time period has ended, then I obviously don’t have the time or the desire to do those jobs that are left.  Those jobs go to the handyman.

Of course, if the job listed is not something that I know how to do and don’t want to learn how to do (e.g. tiling), then that job automatically goes to the contractor.  Similarly, if the job is something that would save me a lot of money if I were to do it myself, then I’ll bite the bullet and just do it (or learn how to do it… blowing insulation into an attic, anyone?).

Here is an example of a list from last week where I marked whether I would do it, “S,” or my contractor would do it “H.”

As you can see from the 2nd item on the list, I’m having my handyman replace a light fixture on the covered porch.  This is something that I know how to do, but I’ve had that stupid item on my list for like a year now. Obviously I’m not going to do it even though it will take me about 10 minutes to do or I would have done it by now.  My handyman will already have the ladder and all of his tools out because of other jobs in the same area so I asked him to do it instead.  It took him 5 minutes and he didn’t charge me since it was so easy.  That guilt is off my shoulders and the job is done!

So that’s how I do it!  I’m now off to tackle item #1 on my list.  My handyman is coming again next week and I want to have some items crossed off to show that I’m actually not a slacker!