Welcome to Money Saving Madness! This site is dedicated to helping you shop smart and save more! Here you will find coupons, deals and creative ways to save!

Don't miss any of my great deals and money saving tips by subscribing for FREE via email or RSS feed.


Save Money By "Doing it Yourself" -- Lessons Learned

When my husband and I got married I was determined to make smart money decisions.  I was working two jobs that complimented each other.  When I was off from my teaching job I was on at my job as a manager at a local country club.  My husband was working long hours as a chef.  None of those jobs paid a lot, but together we made a good income.

We bought a very reasonably priced home, very much under our budget and decided to fix it up.  We worked hard and felt we deserved to have a nice home.  So in a few years time we dropped over $60,000 in repairs to our home.  The repairs were not over the top by any means.  We hired a very reasonable handyman and found that a custom kitchen actually would cost us less than premade cabinetry.  We installed all new windows, doors, a new furnace, paved our driveway and the list goes on.  The repairs were much needed.

Six years later as our little family grew from two to five, we outgrew our little bungalow and decided to put our house on the market.  There were two huge problems.  The housing market was failing and our house was worth more than other "comparables" in the neighborhood.  We knew there was no way we would break even.

We decided to save realtor's fees and sell our home outright.  We underpriced it, however it was still overpriced for the neighborhood.  We ended up selling our home in under 30 days, taking a loss of over $25,000.  OUCH.

Realizing it could be much worse, we decided to move on with the knowledge of our mistake bound and determined not to make it again.  As the state of the economy worsened we knew there was no way we could hire someone to do the things we needed done in our new home.

We had two choices.  Make no upgrades or do the work ourselves.  We began thinking there was nothing our brand new home needed.  But as we lived in the house we realized our family needed the basement finished and we needed a shed - at the bare minimum.  The cost for having the basement finished would cost over $30,000.  We knew we could not put that kind of money into our home and hope to get it all back someday.

There was just one little problem.  My husband had NO carpentry skills and I had minimal skills.  I decided to do the work myself anyway, determined to figure it out.  And by myself, I mean just ME.  I Googled drywalling and asked a whole lot of questions at 84 Lumber.  The worst that could happen was I would need to hire someone to fix my mistakes.  And believe me, I worried, and my husband had little faith and thought I would fail.

I am happy to say my "Googling" paid off.  I was able to enlist the help of my dad for free on weekends and put in some very late nights after my children went to sleep.  I drywalled and installed hardwood, I mitred wood trim, hung doors and a suspended ceiling, did minor electrical work, rebuilt stairs and created a hardwood railing (by far the hardest job).  Our $30,000 basement finishing job turned into a $7,000 job.  I finished our 1000 square foot room in a little under 9 months and only hired an electrician to do major rewiring.

My work made us extremely proud and gave me confidence that I could do just about anything.  I went on to build a shed from blueprints with the help of my dad and my husband, installed two new sinks in bathrooms, did more drywalling and the list goes on.  We have not needed a handyman and we have saved thousands!

In this economy, I would encourage you to "Google it" and do it yourself too.  You'll be glad you did!

Save Money By "Doing it Yourself" -- Lessons LearnedSocialTwist Tell-a-Friend



Blog Design By Sour Apple Studio © All Rights Reserved.