DIY Disasters

Pondering a major DIY home project? Read this to avoid costly mistakes

Pondering a major DIY home project? Read this to avoid costly mistakes

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Some things you can do yourself, but for others you should hire a professional. Courtesy photo

You watch HGTV and can wield a paintbrush, so you figure you can tackle that DIY home project. But perhaps you shouldn't, says a Zillow Digs analysis.

YouTube tutorials aren't always reliable, it seems, as one in three homeowners who undertook a DIY project in the last three years ended up regretting their work.

"With seemingly endless DIY tips and how-to videos available today, home improvement projects appear easier and more accessible than ever before," says Kerrie Kelly, Zillow Digs home design expert. "While some DIY projects can save you money, involving a professional for larger-scale projects, especially those that require specialized skills, can help eliminate headaches and costly mistakes."

What are the biggest offenders for weekend warriors? Adding or expanding a room is No. 1, while refacing/refinishing cabinetry, refinishing a basement or attic, and replacing or reinstalling new carpet or hardwoods round out the top most regretted projects. Other daunting projects, such as tiling and building a deck, also make appearances on the list of regrets.

Going over budget is the biggest regret, as nearly a quarter of those surveyed ended up spending more by doing the work themselves as opposed to hiring a professional.

Three-quarters of homeowners completed a do-it-yourself project since 2012, and the lure of getting their hands dirty is still strong enough to outweigh potential regrets for some. Homeowners tend to stay within their budget on smaller projects, and they are generally pleased with the results of their own labor.

If you're looking for something to do yourself, consider the top five least-regretted DIY home improvement projects: replacing a light fixture, changing out cabinet hardware, painting a room, installing new kitchen appliances, and replacing plumbing fixtures.