The summer months are fast approaching. With that comes the warmer weather and longer evenings. It is absolute bliss.
While the recent weeks have been overshadowed by downpour after downpour of rain, this dream of summer seems far off. With this in mind, and with even more time spent indoors, you might be in the position where you are considering a home DIY project.
A record number of people completed home renovations and DIY projects throughout the numerous lockdowns we have endured in the last twelve months. There is no surprise that more people are jumping on the bandwagon and getting those creative juices flowing!
Whether you intend to complete a small project or are throwing caution to the wind and pulling out all the stops, the choice is entirely up to you! However, we feel confident there will be something of value below.
To find out a bit more on what you should remember when planning and completing a home DIY project, read on! Detailed below is the ultimate guide to all things summer DIY projects. Remember to take notes!
Planning your project
This is the most crucial part of completing a home DIY project. Some people even say that the initial planning process is more important than the build itself. This would naturally depend on what you are planning to do and is subjective to your individual situation and circumstance.
Projects big and small each require a level of planning to ensure that things run as smoothly as possible here on out. While there are obstacles that could well arise throughout the duration of your project, there are things that you can do to oversee and manage said issues.
There will be some unexpected issues. That is only natural. Put contingency plans in place for obstacles and problems that you can manage while preparing as best as you can for those that you cannot.
Enlist the expertise of other people when creating your plan. It is common to be protective over the plans for your project; you want everything to run according to the plan and timeframe you have laid out. We get it; we have been there once or twice ourselves!
However, the knowledge and expertise that other people can bestow upon you concerning your plans is priceless. Particularly if you are intending to use the services of a skilled tradesman to assist on your project, they will be able to give pointers on dos and don’ts for your project. Take heed to what they say, for they manage and deal with these kinds of things daily.
Budgeting your project
It goes without saying, but to properly manage and complete your project, you need to be aware of the money that you have to fund it. Knowing what your budget is going to be while splitting it into specific sections that cover the entirety of your project will make things easier moving forward.
While you should create a budget before launching your project, you will need to check your project’s expenditure frequently. This ensures that you are staying on track and aren’t at risk of going over your budget in any way. See if there are areas where you are underspending and if those funds can be transferred to a separate area which might be more costly than initially thought.
Taking your time with your project is one thing but using appropriate and good-quality materials is another. While some people might be tempted to cut corners on the materials they use as a means of saving themselves some money, this should be avoided and discouraged at all costs. No pun intended.
This leads us to the next point.
Using appropriate materials
To complete a project to the best standard possible, you want to ensure you are using the appropriate materials for the job. While this seems like a bit of a given, there are many projects out there that have been completed with the wrong or inappropriate materials.
Building and project materials are monitored and held to strict codes from governing bodies. Take the time to read up on any of these building codes that will directly affect what you are doing. This ensures that you do not reach any regulatory issues moving forward and keeps you and your project out of trouble.
Concerning the purchasing of materials, it is paramount that you do not cut corners. While we understand this can be tempting, particularly when wanting to make the most of your budget, this could cause some issues in the future.
Cheap or mismanaged materials could do more damage to your project and could lead to increased costs that were otherwise avoidable. To avoid spending more on your home project than you need to make sure to take the time to research precisely what materials you need and the best ones on the market. That is not to say that you should choose the most expensive materials, but you should make every effort to avoid selecting the first ones you come across.
Furthermore, finding materials that are versatile and which can be used to fulfil a number of tasks in your project will further contribute to you maximising your budget. While we recognise there will be some projects that require specific materials, there are some out there that can be used in various ways.
C24 timber joists, for example, can be used as a floor joist in your DIY project but prove versatile in other ways too. Provided by companies like Armstrong Supplies, these quality materials can also be used in your ceiling and as a means of fitting decking in your garden. With quality materials such as this, you can ensure that your project stands the test of time. It’ll look great and remain sturdy for many years to come with joists such as these.
So, when you’re searching for materials for your next job, make sure that they are high-quality and designed to last. This approach will ensure that your project is a success and doesn’t need re-doing regularly.
If you are intending to take on a larger home DIY project, you might need to seek the permission of your local authorities to conduct such work. Planning permission should be at the top of your to-do list and must be obtained before you set your sights on a start date for your project.
Planning permission can be obtained by your local governing authority, whether that be the council or the associated building regulators. For the most part, planning permission is needed when wanting to make drastic changes to your property.
This includes the likes of adding an extension, building a separate building – like that of an outbuilding or shed – and when wanting to change the use of the building altogether. Before going forward with your plans, you want to check whether you will need planning permission or not.
There are specific requirements concerning sizing restrictions. This is something that you will want to be aware of before going forth with your plans. Furthermore, it is all well and good knowing what size you want your project to be. It is another job in itself, ensuring that the project sticks to this size.
While that is the case, it is crucial you make every effort to do so. You do not want to complete your project to find that you will need to tear it down for breaking planning permission regulations. Save yourself time, money, and effort in the long run by getting this element of your project sorted sooner rather than later.
You will also be able to make any adjustments necessary to ensure that your project remains compliant with planning permission guidelines. Not only will you get your DIY project up and running, but you will be minimising the chances of being faced with authoritative action in the future. What more could you want?
Children and pets
While we understand that some people reading this who are planning a summer DIY project won’t have children or pets, we felt it was still worth a mention for those who do.
It would be something of an understatement to say that children and pets don’t get in the way sometimes. It always seems the case they appear when we are most busy!
For the most part, nothing stops you from getting your children involved in the project. Especially if they are a bit older and more self-aware. Delegate smaller, more manageable tasks to your children, but ensure that there is someone around to supervise them all the same.
It may be worth your efforts showing them what you want to be completed before letting them loose. This ensures the safety of your children, but in extension, the safety of your project as well.
Concerning the safety of your pets during a DIY project, this would depend on the size and what animal you have. For the likes of smaller pets, like that of hamsters and guinea pigs, they should be out of harm’s way. If you are renovating the area of your property that they call home, consider relocating them to a different room while you complete the works.
For the likes of our slightly bigger four-legged friends – cats and dogs – you might need to consider other options when keeping them out of the way. If you are completing significant work on your property, it might be worth asking a family member or a friend if they are able to take in your pet while you do so. This ensures that any curiosity does not get the better of them, and they don’t find themselves venturing into your worksite!
Dogs, on the other hand, can be somewhat easier managed. If you are completing works within the interior of your home and have adequate outdoor space, consider letting them out and about there. Naturally, given the weather that we get here in the UK, it is challenging to say whether you will get sunny weather for your project. It can be awfully dreary, even during the warmer months!
Once more, you could ask a family member or a friend to care for your dog while completing works on your property. If you are faced with the situation where you are having to juggle completing your project with caring for your children or animals, there are effective ways of doing this.
Consider introducing them to anyone who might be assisting you on the project. Once those curious members of your family understand what is going on and who is spending time in their home, their minds may rest.
Wanting something to be completed as soon as possible is entirely normal and all part of being human, after all! These feelings of impatience are sure to be heightened when you are at the helm, guiding and navigating your project to completion.
While this is very well the case, you want to ensure that you are patient. The project is going to take some time and will not be completed overnight. Don’t rush through, for you are more likely to make mistakes when rushing. It can be disheartening to see something you are putting so much effort into taking a long time to complete. We get it.
Although, with this in mind, you must remind yourself to keep going. More so through these disheartening and challenging moments. It can be easier to sack it all off and call it a day, but where is the fun in that? Remind yourself that the hard work will be worth it in the long run. You will be marvelling at your project in no time.
While these are but a handful of the things that should be remembered when completing a DIY project in your home this summer, we hope that it has proved helpful in some way. Naturally, the circumstances of your own situation and home will differ from the next.
Have faith in your efforts and enjoy! There is no one-size-fits-all method of successfully completing a DIY project. You never know; you might get inspiration for your next project while completing this one. The opportunities are endless, so get out there!