There are few DIY disasters that can compare to the fresco restoration blunder made by well-intentioned 81 year old Cecilia Giménez. Although she attempted to restore the centuries old Ecce Homo painting as a favor for her church, the project was clearly over her head and the restoration attempt was severely botched to say the least. At least Cecilia is in good company, there are thousands of botched DIY attempts made by well-intentioned homeowners every year. While most failed DIY projects don’t include the complete destruction of a priceless icon, they can certainly cause a lot of heartache and cost a lot of money.
If you’ve ever seen “Disaster DIY” on HGTV where do-it-yourself projects turn out to be disaster-prone catastrophes for doomed homeowners, you know what I mean. Luckily, contractor Bryan Baeumler is there to rescue the homeowners from their self-imposed fiascoes. However, there are thousands of other ill-fated homeowners who aren’t so lucky. There are some big lessons to be learned by watching “Disaster DIY,” namely, don’t overestimate your ability, planning, and the amount of time it will take to finish a project. And most importantly, hire a contractor before the projects turns into an ugly beast you can’t control.
Starting a project before you have a thorough plan and design is a slippery slope into to DIY hell. Many people aren’t even aware of all the things they might be missing— materials, dimensions, wiring, pipes, etc. Also, you might have misjudged your ability to overcome difficult plumbing and wiring tasks. Kitchen and bathroom spaces are especially difficult and what looks like a day’s effort can turn into weeks of missteps and miscalculations. In fact, what many do-it –yourselfers don’t realize is that by trying to save money, they actually end up spending more than just hiring a professional in the first place.