4. Scope Creep
This condition is more often seen in projects where a contractor is doing to the work, but it still happens with DIY projects. You may think …while your in there…can you do this…and that…Next thing you know, the project is twice as big, the schedule and budget are blown and your project is still not completed. Fight the urge to expand the bath remodel into a whole house remodel. Save a project for next time. You will appreciate the down time to recover your wits, and let the home remodel fund gain some strength.
5. Lack of Tools or Skills to Use Them
I have to admit it — I have a lot of tools. But, I use them on all types of projects. I do custom cabinetry, furniture, tile and hardwood flooring, in addition to trim carpentry, and framing. Chances are you, as a basic homeowner, will not have all the specialty tools that make a job go by quickly and safely. Since I have used these tools for years, I am familiar with the safety issues and the best way to use them. If you need to rent or borrow tools, you may have a steep learning curve, and there is no substitute for experience.
If a 250 pound 220 Volt floor sander scares you…get help. Running a floor sander can be a rewarding experience. It can also punch a big hole in your wall if it gets away from you…(see Items 2, 3 and 4 above).
6. Material Selection / Over Build, Under Build
Picking out tile or figuring what type of hardwood flooring will look great in your living room is one of the fun parts of a project. The lesson here is to balance the materials / appliances with the style and value of your home. That six-burner $5000 Wolf gas range is cool, but will it fit in your 88-square-foot kitchen? On the other hand, a linoleum tile floor just doesn’t fit with granite slab counters. Keep things balanced and equitable with the rest of your home.
7. Aggressive Timeline
Most projects will take longer to complete than you first thought. Chances are you still have your “regular job” so your project is being done on weekends and evenings — this gets old pretty quick. I was there when I added 960 square feet to my home about a decade ago. After putting in 8-9 hours at your day job, do you really want to sand drywall for another 3-4 hours? No, not really, this pattern will erode your enthusiasm, and slow you down. Plan for it!