7 DIY Home Repair Mistakes to Avoid Before Selling Your House

Making home repairs before selling your home can be a great way to increase value, but there’s some projects that need to be left to the professionals. The post 7 DIY Home Repair Mistakes to Avoid Before Selling Your House appeared first on Redfin | Real Estate Tips for Home Buying, Selling & More.

7 DIY Home Repair Mistakes to Avoid Before Selling Your House

DIY (do it yourself) is a common approach to home repairs for a variety of reasons, from budget to perceived simplicity. For those preparing to , pinching pennies can be a common motivation for tackling fixes without professional involvement. In some cases, DIY solutions are a great way to save time and money with very little risk, but at times, neglecting the abilities of a pro can cause costly problems. 

Hire a Professional for These Home Repairs

Not all home repairs are made equal. Basic home projects, like putting up wallpaper are relatively low risk and don’t pose the potential for big problems down the line. However, more substantial projects can require a level of expertise above and beyond what the average homeowner can accomplish. When not handled properly, these kinds of DIY fixes can result in serious damage that could cost a small fortune to fix. That’s why we created a list of projects that should be handled by the professionals, rather than doing it yourself.

Don’t be afraid to call a contractor before you start your DIY renovation or repairs. Be honest with your contractor about your intent to do the repairs yourself and the fact that you’re requesting their assistance with their knowledge, not their service. You will probably have to pay them a fee but that fee grants you their years of knowledge and experience to help guide you thru the project. This help can be priceless! –Miguel Silva and Adam Bennett,

Before starting on any big DIY project look and see if a permit is required by the local building department, and to get that permit before you perform the work. In some states (like ) you have to disclose any unpermitted work to potential buyers, which obviously can hurt the sales price of a home. If you fail to disclose the unpermitted work and it is discovered after the sale closes, you might be sued for any repair costs. It is always cheaper and less time-consuming to just get the permit upfront. –Jason Lambert,  

1. Electrical Work

Dealing with any notable wiring issues throughout a home is best left in the hands of an electrician. While something simple, like replacing a lightbulb, is certainly possible without a pro, anything larger requires someone trained in electrical systems.

Accessing electrical boxes, , replacing wiring, adding new wiring, or anything else more complicated has the potential to harm both you and your property without proper oversight. Accidents with electrical work can cause electrocution or start fires, putting both your health and your home at risk. Without the expertise of an electrician, there’s no way to know whether the tutorials you’re reading or viewing online are appropriate for your property.

Rely on the professionals when it comes to upping your smart home capability. You might be able to buy it on Amazon, but that doesn’t mean you can install it correctly. If you can’t get it working yourself and end up calling out the pros, they often will not work on homeowner purchased materials due to warranty issues. –

2. Plumbing

Plumbing, like electrical work, can be tricky to get right for those without formal training. It’s not unusual for DIY home repairs to cause burst pipes or leaks, opening the door for potential water damage to your home. When these leaks or broken pipes are found within walls, or difficult to detect, it can become a serious issue. 

Before trying to do something like replacing a pipe or installing new fixtures, contact a plumber to make sure your repairs are appropriate and up to code. It’s cheaper to hire a professional for small tasks from the start than to bring in a plumber once a problem arises. Installing a new faucet is much cheaper than installing a new faucet and fixing the problems caused by a DIY installation gone awry.

Mold Remediation is a significant concern for homeowners. Properly handling mold is critical to avoid additional damages. It is easy to make things worse if things aren’t properly addressed. Painting over mold doesn’t address the issue. Bleach is not an effective chemical for killing mold. Applying any airflow to mold growth makes things worse. Do not put fans on any mold growth even if it appears wet. –

3. Full Bathroom Remodels

Bathroom remodeling projects often seem easy, but can actually entail much more than you may think. Oftentimes, these projects can require elements of other kinds of home repairs, like plumbing and electrical work. 

Tackling a bathroom from top to bottom can be an excellent way to boost your before listing it, but approaching a remodel in the wrong way can be disastrous. An error in plumbing, cabinet and counter installation, wiring, or anything else could be more costly than beneficial. When you want your bathroom to look – and function – it’s very best, you will want help from a licensed contractor or remodeler who can adhere to building codes and prevent major problems.

A bathroom remodel is not a straightforward DIY project like many are, even something as simple as tile selection can have consequences. There are so many details that need to be considered from waterproofing your bath or shower to making sure the shower bottom is correctly sloped.  Each step requires industry knowledge and one small oversight can cause water intrusion which can be disastrous. –Jenni Wileman, licensed contractor, and owner of

Stick to what you’re good at. If you’re really handy and a highly experienced DIYer, tackle that new flooring you’ve been wanting for years and install crown molding while you’re at it! If you’ve just recently dipped your big toe into home maintenance, use caution as you exercise the skills you’re confident in, because if you start a master bathroom remodel you will likely get partway through the project before becoming overwhelmed, and contractors generally don’t like to finish projects that someone else has started.

home repair

4. Foundation and Crawl Space Repairs

Little foundation fixes or crawl space repairs may look simple on the surface, but these kinds of projects can be serious endeavors and require the training and tools the average homeowner doesn’t have. This is particularly true with foundation repairs, especially if you live in an area with a wet climate like . Failing to address signs of foundation damage can threaten the stability of your entire home. Additionally, an improper DIY home repair can yield more costly treatments down the road and leave room for much more serious damage. 

Identifying and fixing foundation problems can require anything from construction equipment to hydraulic lifts. Instead of taking the easy way out, partner with a professional to make sure these serious repairs are made the right way.

5. Roof Replacement or Repairs

Roofing is both challenging and potentially dangerous, making this a poor choice for a DIY project. Replacing shingles or repairing structural issues can be tempting – roofing prices can be steep – but these kinds of tasks are easy to do incorrectly. When shingles aren’t placed properly, insulation is lacking, chimneys aren’t adequately navigated, and safety precautions aren’t taken, big problems can happen. 

Roof leaks are such a miserable experience – everything from grabbing a pot to put under a water drip to seeing drywall damage and spotting. A lot of homeowners try to slap tar or other “guaranteed leakproof” materials from the local hardware store on their roofs, but unfortunately, this does NOT work for asphalt shingles. Check out a professional YouTube video from a trusted roofer before attempting to put any sealant on your roof; bonus points for having an honest roofing company give you a professional recommendation!

Climbing around on the top of your house with tools and heavy materials is a home repair project best left for a professional. The risk for improper insulation, wrong shingle placement, or even slips and falls makes roofing jobs far too challenging for a standard homeowner. Also, having a professional step in for a big project like this will ensure everything is done well and in a timely manner. 

Many times the “savings” from a homeowner attempted project end up being far more costly than having a professional complete the repairs from the start.  Simple decisions such as which type of sealant or nails to use, or where to fasten shingles properly, can create more damage than was present before homeowner repairs. Choose a trustworthy professional, and both buyers and sellers can rely on their expertise. –Cervices, LLC Roofing, Gutters, and Siding

6. Replacing Siding

The siding on your home looks deceptively simple, but replacing a whole house worth of siding can be a seriously challenging home repair. This task can take days on end, and placing siding straight and even is a much harder project than it may appear to be on the surface.

It’s also important to remember that siding is more than an aesthetic feature. Siding that’s installed incorrectly can cause water and weather damage, driving increased temperature control costs, the likelihood of pest damage, and potential structural issues. Simply put, if you are planning to replace your siding to increase your home value, make sure a professional is involved in the process.

There’s a lot to be said for the peace of mind that comes from partnering with an electrician, plumber, roofer, remodeling company, or contractor. Before charging ahead with a DIY home repair, make sure you understand the scope of the repairs you are trying to make, any risks, and the potential value of professional involvement.

7. Painting

Congratulations, you have just purchased your new home. One of the least expensive ways to transform and update your home to reflect your personal style is with a fresh coat of paint.

Painting can be fun but also has its challenges. One challenge is keeping a wet edge while painting to avoid lap marks. Lap marks are created during the application process when painting a wet coating into a drying paint film. Lap marks cause the wall color to appear shadowed, and uneven in sheen particularly when using a matte, eggshell, or satin finish. Adding to this challenge is the speed at which today’s paint dry, making keeping a wet edge even more difficult. Stairways and large open walls are best tackled by a skilled technician. –RennovateResidential 

There’s a lot to be said for the peace of mind that comes from partnering with an electrician, plumber, roofer, remodeling company, painter, or contractor. Before charging ahead with a DIY home repair, make sure you understand the scope of the repairs you are trying to make, any risks, and the potential value of professional involvement.

The post 7 DIY Home Repair Mistakes to Avoid Before Selling Your House appeared first on Redfin | Real Estate Tips for Home Buying, Selling & More.

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Minimalist Home Interior: Designing a Space that Promotes Living with Less

As the summer season begins, embrace minimalism and ditch the clutter. Check out these 9 minimalist home interior design ideas to make your space brighter and breezy this year. The post Minimalist Home Interior: Designing a Space that Promotes Living with Less appeared first on Redfin | Real Estate Tips for Home Buying, Selling & More.

Minimalist Home Interior: Designing a Space that Promotes Living with Less

Now that it’s summer, you may have forgotten about your New Year’s resolutions to keep your home organized and embrace a more minimalist home interior. As you take a look around your home, you may even start to notice miscellaneous papers strewn across the counters, or knick-knacks you can’t remember buying cluttering up your shelves. With a new season about to begin, there’s no better time than now to clear the clutter and start fresh. 

You can create a minimalist home interior by making simple changes to your living space or opting for an interior design renovation. Whether you’re , or a , you can make your home stylish yet subtle. These 9 tips will help you begin designing a more minimalist home interior, helping you learn how to live better with less. 

1) Keep clutter to a minimum

One of the main reasons you might be looking for minimalist home décor is due to the clutter your home has accumulated over the years. If you’re looking for a way to begin – start small. That may be spending five minutes a day decluttering your space, organizing room-by-room, or simply clearing off any surface clutter. No matter how you begin organizing your home, you have options to make decluttering doable.

2) Make sure you have enough storage

An easy way to keep the clutter at bay is having enough storage to stow away your things properly. Lack of storage space can prevent you from achieving your goal of a minimalist home and lifestyle. However, that doesn’t mean you should start buying more things than you need. Having optimal storage will allow you to store what you need in its proper place without clutter overflowing into your living spaces. Consider streamlined built-in storage cabinets to keep your items organized and stylishly out of sight. 

3) Choose light colors to brighten up your space

The first step in creating a minimalist home interior is to choose light colors as your base. Think whites, beiges, light grays, or any neutral color variation that you like best. But don’t be afraid to add some splashes of black to your space. Having these contrasting colors will help create dimension in your living area. Whether it’s a black throw blanket over an off-white couch or dark grey pillows on an ecru bedspread, you can keep your color palette bright while also incorporating darker shades. 


4) Use pops of color as accents

Just because a minimalist home interior highlights a neutral color palette doesn’t mean you have to turn away from color. Choosing the right pops of color in your home can bring personality and add brightness to your space. Consider warm colors like mustard yellow or rust orange pillows on a crisp white chair or the right piece of artwork against light-colored walls, like a sunset painting or abstract drawing. may come and go, but incorporating the right touches of color into a minimalist home design can create a timeless space.

5) Streamlined and functional furniture is key to a minimalist home interior

Whether you have a or something more unique, designing a minimalist home interior takes time and thought. If you’re considering updating your furniture, go for a streamlined look. Choose furniture with sleek lines, like backless barstools in a kitchen or a chic glass coffee table. You want to have a space that includes functional pieces and complements your home’s interior, no matter the style.

6) Use a variety of textures to create dimension

To create contrast and interest in your space, it’s important to use a variety of textures, such as mixing a chunky wool blanket on a brushed velvet couch with linen curtains to frame your windows. This way, you can stick to a sleek color palette without making your home appear one-note. If you’re having trouble visualizing or designing your space, contact an interior designer to help design the perfect minimalist home interior.


7) Decorate your space with intention and meaning

One of the reasons you may be looking to design a minimalist home is because of all the knick-knacks cluttering up your space. When decorating your space, it’s important to choose pieces with intention – ones that mean something to you. Having a curated collection of decorative items will add style to your space without taking away from the rest of your décor. Be sure not to over-decorate. Choose the right artwork for your walls and space out your ceramics or candles on the shelves. 

8) Add greenery and brightness to your space with plants 

While it may seem counterintuitive to have bright greenery in your home when sticking to a neutral color palette, incorporating plants into your home can help tie your space together. Houseplants add an element of natural beauty and can breathe new life into your home while staying also minimal. Use a fiddle-leaf fig next to a window with lots of sunlight or add a pothos in your bedroom where there’s low light. The options to use indoor plants and flowers as part of your minimalist home interior design are endless. Plus, like increasing productivity and improving indoor air quality.

9) Use natural light to warm up your home

When you’re looking for the right place in your home for your new houseplants, make sure to lift your window shades. Sunlight can add warmth to your neutral furnishings and can go a long way to . Embrace what natural light your windows let in to keep your space feeling airy and bright. Even if you live in a city where there isn’t much sunlight, like , use breezy, sheer curtains to highlight your windows or place a mirror to help spread natural light around your space.

The post Minimalist Home Interior: Designing a Space that Promotes Living with Less appeared first on Redfin | Real Estate Tips for Home Buying, Selling & More.

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