Put down that toolbox, and consider hiring a pro


Replace a toilet, check! Fix the faucet, check! Replace that old light fixture, check!

Sure, you might be willing and able to do just about any home improvement project around your house, but before you tackle any major work, consider two things:

First, ask yourself if you can do the job right.

Saving money is one thing, but are you knowledgeable enough about the task at hand so you don’t encounter major (and costly) problems?

Second – and perhaps more importantly—put yourself in the shoes of a potential buyer, even if you’re not likely to sell for years.

You might be proud of all your home improvements, but the homebuyer may ask lots of questions about the work. Like it or not, there is an inherent skepticism about homegrown handymen, no matter your talents. There are safety concerns and potential legal issues. You did get permits right?

Professionally done work, on the other hand, tends to have a certain “seal of approval” that assures the job was done properly. Plus, most pros guarantee their work for an extended time, which gives buyers even more confidence.

Sure, there are a few bad apples out there, but if you do your homework, you will find a reputable, professional contractor that will do what they say they will do.  Ask your neighbors, friends and family for recommendations. Or, consult an online resource such as Angie’s List or CustomerLobby which list reviews of local area contractors.

For more information on selecting a contractor, check out our guide “6 Mistakes to avoid when selecting a contractor.”

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