With over 9 years of DIYing under our (tool) belts, it’s probably inevitable that DIYing would end up changing not only our homes but our lives, too. It’s influenced us in more ways than we ever thought possible!
Way back in 2010 we started out on our DIY journey because we basically had no choice. We bought a house we could barely afford and had no money left to do any of the building work it so desperately needed. We had to get stuck in ourselves and we had to learn quickly.
Now, two homes and countless projects later, we can’t imagine our lives any other way. DIY has completely taken over almost every aspect of our lives and we wouldn’t want it any other way! It’s been such a positive journey and it’s an experience we can’t recommend highly enough!
There’s no denying that DIYing has changed us although not every change is necessary for the better.
As you can probably imagine, the biggest change is how much more self-sufficient we are.
We’re so much less reliant on help from others, don’t have to wait for tradespeople to turn up (that often don’t bother to appear at all) and can often get home improvements done quicker because the cost of DIYing something is so much less than paying someone to do it for you.
The feeling of being able to stand back and say ‘I did that’ is unbeatable and knowing that you’re able to quickly get things done yourself is an empowering and super satisfying feeling!
It’s one of those things that no one talks about but for us, the financial aspect is the main reason we started to DIY in the first place!
DIY has allowed us to be in a financially much more stable position. We spend less on expensive tradespeople, we learned to budget our home improvements better and we made a substantial profit on our last house which enabled us to buy our current apartment in the middle of Berlin.
There’s not a doubt in my mind that we wouldn’t be in the position we are in now if we’d not got stuck in and learned how to improve our home ourselves!
Learning how to do things ourselves has definitely made us much more confident when it comes to tackling any kind of home-related project.
For me, even the largest project is essentially just a lot of little ones added together. If you’d told me at the beginning of our home improvement journey that we’d end up doing things like replacing our water mains or completely replacing our garage roof I would have thought you were bonkers!
For the jobs we do pay tradespeople to do, we also feel more confident in negotiating and feel more secure as we at least have a rough idea of what will be involved and feel that we’re less likely to get ripped off (although we’re definitely still not scam proof!). Being able to estimate what will be involved in a job definitely makes a huge difference though!
4. DIY Addicted
This is definitely one of the drawbacks of living in a home you’re improving. There’s always another project on the horizon and you find yourself thinking about things constantly!
We can’t imagine living in a finished home (although it would be nice at some point!) which inevitably means that we’re always faced with something that needs doing so it can be difficult to switch off.
That’s part of the reason that we always recommend finishing one room. Just having at least one space to be able to retreat to and get away from the mess, dirt and chaos of a renovation is vital when you’re living in it!
5. Inpatient & Appreciative
Almost every project we’ve ever tackled has taken us longer to complete than we thought it would. Even after DIYing for so many years, the time a project takes to complete is still something we underestimate. (Our new rule is to just double how long we think something will take!)
Sanding and painting our staircase, for instance, took me almost 2.5 years to complete and stripping paint is always a nightmare (it’s my most hated DIY job) as it’s fun and satisfying for the first 20 minutes and then it’s just a slow and boring process to go through!
As impatient as I am, I have also learned to appreciate things more. Knowing just how much hard work goes into a project and knowing how many hours it takes to get things done definitely makes you appreciate high-quality finishes, gorgeously designed rooms and completed projects so much more.
We obviously love DIY and it’s something that we think everyone can do! Just a few easy to learn skills can go a very long way. Give it a try – you might be surprised at just how much you can do!
Do you DIY and tackle home improvement projects yourself? Are you as impatient as I am? Has DIYing changed you?