Don't Hire Done What You Can Do Yourself

Homeowners can save a bundle of money by doing basic maintenance and minor home repairs themselves. As a bonus, you know the quality of the work when you do it yourself.

Don’t know how to do it? Then learn how to do it. There are quite a few how-to websites that give you step-by-step instructions. Two that I have used often are YouTube and WikiHow. Many times, you’ll come to realize that the task you need to do isn’t nearly as daunting as you you think. Here are a few tasks that you can easily do yourself:

  • Repair a leaky faucet
  • Replace a faucet
  • Replace an electrical outlet
  • Replace a light switch
  • Cut and lay tile — including ceramic
  • Replace a toilet
  • Repair a leaking roof
  • Repair a section of broken concrete
  • Paint or stain (interior and exterior)
  • Repair a hole in a wall or ceiling
  • Lay laminate flooring
  • Replace a lavatory (pre-fabricated or from scratch)
  • Repair or replace windows (small to medium sized)
  • Install a storm door
  • Replace door and window screens

One of the reasons people hire others (or professionals) is because they do not have the needed tools. There are three easy solutions to remedy this situation: buy the tools you need on a project-by-project basis, borrow from a friend, family or neighbor, or buy used from thrift stores, garage sales or pawn shops

If buying, it is frugally prudent to buy quality hand and power tools based on your projected use over your lifetime. The more you anticipate using the item, the higher quality it needs to be. Example: (I live in Ecuador, South America. Due to a 52-week growing season, and the amount and frequency of rainfall, it is necessary to mow the grass twice weekly. As a result. I purchased a high-quality lawn mower and trimmer.)

If borrowing, be sure you return the item in the same — or better — condition than when you borrowed it. Also make sure you know how to properly use the item borrowed.

Finally, use caution when operating power tools. I cannot stress enough the importance of safety including the use of safety goggles and ear plugs. When doing home maintenance and repair, always have a first aid kit available and easy to get to. For some projects it is advisable to have a working companion to make the task easier and for safety.

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Frugal Plan’s Promise

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  • No product or service endorsements
  • No manufacturer or retail affiliations

Published by W. M. Brown

I am a retired U.S. expat living in Ecuador. I was a business owner for 32 years before retiring in 2012.

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