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Home Renovations: When To DIY (And When To Hire A Pro)

You are a loyal HGTV viewer, an avid home renovation blog reader, and consider yourself handy by nature. But even still, it can be difficult to decide whether a home project can be DIYed or if it requires the expertise of a professional. Fortunately for you and your next project, Mr. Cooper is here to help! We’ve outlined some of the most common home projects, complete with recommendations on how to best get the job done. And while no one knows your capabilities or limitations better than you, this might help point you in the right direction.

Home Renovations: When To Consult A Pro

Major Electrical Work

Electrical work can be tricky — and not to mention potentially dangerous. If your electrical needs are major — like running new wiring — it should be done by a licensed professional electrician.

Foundation Repairs

The foundation is a critical component of the structure of your home, and repairs typically shouldn’t be DIYed because it could cause some serious structural issues if they aren’t handled properly. You likely won’t regret hiring a professional for projects involving your foundation.


Major plumbing work should be done by a licensed professional. There’s a relatively large amount of room for error, which could result in significant damage to your home. Plus, plumbing issues are often undetected until a lot of damage has already been done.

Tree Removal

There’s a reason tree removal services are expensive — it’s more difficult than it looks. Chances are, you don’t have the equipment needed to safely remove a large tree in your yard. And while you may be able to handle a small tree, large trees can pose many safety hazards. Save the time, money, and potential injury by hiring a professional.

Roof Repairs

Roofs are another home project that can be very dangerous. Professional roofers have the equipment needed to repair your roof (and also to prevent damage to your home). Leaving this job up for a professional could keep you and your home safer!

Installing Windows

New windows are usually a significant investment, and the last thing you want to do is to spend a bunch of money on new windows only to install them inadequately so that cold air and heat can easily escape. Enlisting a professional to do window installation jobs will ensure that windows fit properly, and that your home is well insulated.

Major Remodeling

For bigger jobs, it’s generally wise to consult a professional. If you’re adding on to your home, you will likely need a permit — and major remodels can become incredibly complicated. There may be some small projects that you can tackle yourself, but you’ll likely save time and stress by hiring a professional for the big stuff.

Home Renovations: When to Do-It-Yourself


With a little bit of research, installing new tiles — especially in smaller areas like bathrooms — can certainly be a DIY project (and one with little risk of doing major damage).


Painting the interior of your home is a fairly straightforward project that can make a big difference for the appearance of your space. With a little online research on paint finishes and techniques, a new paint job can be a quick and simple undertaking.


Most landscaping projects can be DIYed. If you have questions or run into trouble, consult the folks at your local garden center. They are typically experts, and also more than willing to offer their perspective or advice.

 Installing Tubs & Toilets

If you’re somewhat experienced with home renovations, you can likely tackle the installation of tubs and toilets. With a little bit of research, this is a job that can safely be DIYed.

Installing Blinds

As long as you feel confident in your ability to measure and use a drill, you can likely install your own blinds — and it could reduce the cost, too.

Minor Electrical Work

…and we mean minor! You likely don’t need an electrician if you’re just switching out a light fixture. There are lots of tutorials and how-to videos online to help you with small electrical projects. 

Installing baseboards

With a little bit of research, you might find that you’re able to install baseboards yourself. There are lots of tips and tricks available online, and if you make a mistake, it won’t be detrimental to your home’s value. (You might just have to redo a section.)

It’s important to note that just because you can DIY something doesn’t mean you should. Before starting any project, weigh the pros and cons of doing it yourself. Determine how much time it will take and the cost of the project, and then compare that with quotes from professionals. Often times, professionals can get materials at a discounted rate so it might not always be cost-effective to DIY.

Here’s the moral of the story: Do your research, and make sure you know what you’re getting yourself into. And don’t be afraid to leave a project that’s outside of your realm of expertise up to the professionals.