Angie's List: Do-It-Yourself projects gone wrong

Don't Waste Your Money

More than 40 million homeowners a year attempt a Do-It-Yourself (DIY) project.

But many of those can turn into a DIY gone wrong. Homeowner Sarah Saucedo experienced just that.

She said she fell in love with the look of black-painted interior doors after seeing pictures online.

"I love DIY. I love projects. I thought this one would be really simple,” Saucedo said. “I've painted doors before. I use spray paint all the time and this was going to be really simple, maybe an hour-long project if that and it turned into a huge mess."

But in removing the trim, her glass atrium door shattered into thousands of pieces on her back patio.

Homeowner Jonathan Metzger called in a pro for help with his bathroom remodel when he realized the project was more than he could handle.

"When you get into a project like that, it seems a bit daunting to begin with,” Metzger said. “But then you start the demo and you take the walls down and you take out a cast iron tub and see all the inner-workings and that's where you start to see the complexity."

Our partners at the consumer guide Angie’s List say you should check out YouTube videos on any project you are considering. That can help you figure out early if it’s too tough for your skills.

"I think the reason DIY is still so popular is because there is so much media attention,” Angie’s List founder Angie Hicks said. “There's television shows, magazines, websites - all show how projects can be done but sometimes consumers get themselves in over their head."

Hicks has the following DIY tips:

  1. How to avoid a DIY disaster: Are you planning a home improvement project this year? If so, you're not alone. The remodeling industry has shown solid growth for the past two years and there's no sign it's letting up. Experts say some 43 million homeowners a year attempt a do-it-yourself project, and it's estimated one if five suffer an injury. Hear from two homeowners who had a D-I-Y project go B-A-D.
  2. How to save money renting a car: Many families are dreaming of spring break getaways. You've spent  lot of time planning your perfect vacation - from booking the hotel to researching restaurants. But there's one thing you may have overlooked. We guide you on how to save money on your car rental.
  3. The value of a home inspection & final walk-through: Most folks know when you're buying a home it's a good idea to get a home inspection. But were you also aware of the important of taking a final walk-through before closing? How both can benefit you, the buyer.
  4. Music and dance lessons for all ages: Whether you've always wanted to learn to tickle the ivories or dance the tango - mastering a new skill can benefit the mind, body and soul. Hear from a parent whose son is taking piano lessons.
  5. Unsexy home improvements you shouldn’t avoid: When we think about home improvement, we’d all like to spend our money on those “sexy” projects - transforming the master bath into one that belongs in a hotel suite or turning the backyard into an outdoor oasis. But then reality sets in, and you likely have to spend the big bucks on unglamorous maintenance projects. Hear from a homeowner who had a project she didn’t show off to the neighbors, but it helps keep her home healthy.


Don't Waste Your Money is a registered trademark of the EW Scripps Co.

"Like" John Matarese on Facebook

Follow John on Twitter (@JohnMatarese)

Print this article Back to Top