The Downside of DIY

If you follow along on my Instagram, you may have noticed that we've gotten ourselves into yet another DIY project in our home. And once again, we are completely in over our heads. After finishing a project and living in the completed space for several months, I often forget about all the hard work that went into it. It's a lot like making the decision to have a second child. All you can think about is creating new life and you quickly forget about the morning sickness, swollen ankles, and insomnia. But you see, the inspiration phase - that craving for the new - is what inspires you to pick up the demo tools in the first place! It's necessary! But if you can prepare yourself for the next phase (the dark and dusty one), you'll be able to survive this journey a lot better than we are now. I've made a list of just a few things that will suffer (besides you, because that's a given) during your home remodel. 

  • Your relationships suffer. Life doesn't stop when you chose to tackle a big project in your home.  So all that free time you would normal spend on the weekend with your kids, your spouse, your extended family, or your friends is now completely devoted to your home. How do you prepare for this difficult time? Sit down and talk with your friends and family and help them understand that for the next few weeks, you're going to be distracted, busy, and overwhelmed. Plan a time to re-connect with them after you've finished your big project. Or better yet, plan a little family or friend getaway once you've reached completion. The "getaway" doesn't have to be expensive and you don't actually have to leave town. What you need is intentional time together without the distraction of dusty rooms and power tools.
  • Your other spaces suffer. This is a big one for us. For the past 2 years, we've poured ourselves into the interior spaces of our home and, as a result, the exterior of our home has been neglected. You probably notice I don't show the outside of our home very much. There's a reason for that. Our backyard is a jungle and our front patio has turned into a landing spot for tools and materials. There's not much you can do to avoid this, but I do believe that choosing the right season is key to helping you decide when to start your remodel. For us, there is a time in the winter from December to March where our lawn requires little or no care. So during that time our home requires less maintenance overall. We made the mistake of starting our current remodel during the summer, when our home and our children need us the most. This remodel is taking a lot longer than expected because we often have to take breaks to entertain the kids or mow the grass. We definitely won't make this mistake again.
  • Your bank account suffers. Yes, you do save a lot of money doing it yourself. But the bills still add up. Forget buying new clothes, going on vacations, or going out to fancy dinners during your remodel. Home Depot will take all your money. When making a budget for your next remodel, be sure to remember that you'll always go over it. Always. But remember...it's a phase! Your bank account won't be in the negative forever and you are adding equity to your home. And in the end, you'll get a pretty picture for Instagram. And if a friend comments and says they're jealous; just send them here.