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Develop Your Property: A Complete Guide to Planning, Managing and Funding Home Improvements (Which? Essential Guides): A Complete Guide to Managing, Building and Funding Home Extensions Paperback – 3 Sep 2007

3.2 out of 5 stars 6 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Which? Books (3 Sept. 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 184490038X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1844900381
  • Product Dimensions: 15 x 1.4 x 21 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 705,533 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product description

About the Author

Kate Faulkner is author of two bestselling Which property books: Renting and Letting and Buy, Sell and Move House. She is a renound expert in the property industry and through her own website designsonproperty.co.uk, helps people who are buying and selling property throughout the UK.

Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.

Can you do-it-yourself?
We all have great intentions when starting DIY projects, but research tells
us:-

1. Four out of ten people don't finish jobs they start
2. We spend approximately £1,700 putting right failed DIY jobs

On a far more scary level, 70 people die each year from DIY and just under
4,000 people end up in hospital every week from DIY projects!

The DIY jobs that you can do really depend on your ability, your
experience, the type of finish you want, the time you have available and
more importantly whether you are legally allowed to carry out certain jobs
in your home.

To do a DIY job you need to be able to assess the work that needs doing.
For example putting up a curtain pole sounds easy, but do you know how the
wall is constructed and therefore the type of fixings that you need or even
the types of drill bit - and length required? Do you have a spirit level
long enough to ensure the curtain pole is put up straight? Will the fixings
be strong enough to hold heavy curtains?

It also requires knowledge of the types of tools needed - and the ability
to use them! Its no use buying a cheap tile cutter for under £30 if you are
laying inch think floor tiles or an entry level sander or drill if you are
carrying out major renovations on a home.

When doing any DIY job, accuracy in measuring, keeping a steady hand when
drilling and patience are definitely skills required. If you are laying
laminate flooring and can't work out angles to lay the border around a
doorframe, and cut accordingly, you may not have the ability to complete
the job. If you don't measure accurately and consistently check things are
level it can mean your DIY job cannot be completed to the standard
required. Don't forget strong maths skills are required, as you will need
to measure and then order enough materials to suit the job. If you get this
wrong it could increase the cost and time taken to complete the project,
and your frustration levels.

Another skill that is essential for many DIY jobs is to be fairly fit and
strong! Taking tiles off walls, carrying them and disposing of them is hard
work - but good exercise if you prepare well. It is important to be aware
of health and safety measures when doing any DIY. It sounds boring, but one
person dies every week just from falling off a ladder. Stretching or over
doing it can easily damage a back or worst still, cause an injury for life.
Make sure you do everything you can, use all the safety equipment such as
goggles, protecting your hands/face, dust masks etc so your keenness for
DIY doesn't turn into a disaster that affects your health.

As a basic rule of thumb, if you've never done any DIY before, practice
first. Go on a course (often local colleges run them) or practice on
something that is acceptable to ruin. Don't do it on your own home or it
could cost you thousands to have put right!

If on the other hand you have experience of one trade, it is likely you can
more easily adapt to another. A good bricklayer would probably find it
relatively easy to tile or do carpentry work as the skills are similar, and
vice versa.

Whatever your level of experience, if you haven't done a job before, ask
someone to give you a hand, maybe to start the job off, or to do the bits
that you find difficult. For example, it's relatively easy to lay flooring
insulation for laminate flooring, and once the flooring around intruding
objects into the floor space have been laid, full planks are easier to lay.
Straight borders are easy to fix, whereas you might need help with working
around doorframes or other angles.

The type of finish you are looking for is another factor to consider. If
the job is one that will make the property look fantastic, such as tiling
in a bathroom or putting in a kitchen, it is probably better to pay a
professional. However if it is putting units into a utility room, that few
will see or laying flooring in a loft space for storage purposes, then as
long as you measure well, use the right tools (and keep on the roof
timbers), then it's worth considering these yourself.

One thing that holds most people up during DIY work is lack of time. We all
think jobs can be done in a day or weekend, but what if you can't get it
done in that time? What is your contingency plan? Jobs that take one
weekend and need to be finished by Monday morning, or for visitors the next
week should be done with a spare weekend or few days holiday just in case.
You don't want to let the relatives sleep in a half finished room full of
dust that hasn't yet settled.

Customer Reviews

3.2 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
This book was fantastic! - I knew nothing about how to add value to my property and found this book invaluable. It's really easy to read, very clear on how to steer clear of cowboy builders and even where you can get a contract for working with tradesmen - for free! Whether it is complicated issues such as planning or building regulations to how to paint over different surfaces, this book has it all.
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Purchased this book as I thought it might help us to prioritise home improvements and decide on a potential extension. As it is a Which publication, we thought it would contain sound advice. Although this may be the case, the advice is so basic it is virtually useless. We found nothing in this publication that we didn't know already. It struck me as merely an amalgamation of information that is freely and readily available elsewhere.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Consumers are scammed by banks, traders, tradesmen and anyone who gets a chance, now you can add consumer advocacy groups and consumer magazines who offer common sense in a list for a price.

These books are good but common sense is better, grow some!

I bought it, read it, it is ok but what I learned was to grow some damn common sense.
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