Well its that time of year again when we start getting around to doing all those jobs we’ve put off during the winter months: fix the leaks, paint the fence, decorate the bedroom, shampoo the carpets, the list goes on!
The thing is that we can spend as long getting things ready to do the job as doing the job itself. When you are watching Grand Designs, they always seem to have a project manager to do all the organising, planning and worrying, but if you treat you jobs like a professional you can avoid some of the common pitfalls such as running out of something or leaving the house in chaos the week after the bank holiday. So here are a few tips that might help you get a great job done:
Plan your job meticulously – I mean measure not estimate. I mean do it systematically rather than haphazardly. I mean think through all the steps of the job in hand and imagine the problems and obstacles you will face, and then prepare for them. This will help you keep the stress levels down and enjoy what you are doing.
Write a list – write a list of all the tools and supplies you will need. The DIY sheds are great places but you often find the number of products overwhelming and can easily forget something, necessitating another trip and wasting valuable time. Taking a list means you come home with what you need.
Paint it Black – use to prime, conceal rust and cover most hard surfaces including wood, metal, plastic, glass, chrome, brick, stone and tile
Shop early - don’t leave the shopping of your supplies until the actual bank holiday. The DIY sheds are always at their busiest and it will take you longer to shop and you will be wasting work time! Pick some things up on the way home from work during the week if you can.
Don’t under estimate your supplies or overestimate your ability – it’s always better to get a bit too much paint, sandpaper, filler etc. You can always use the leftovers for touching up, and even if you waste some it’s often better than that extra trip to the shops and the expense involved, but more importantly you won’t need to waste any time. Make sure you don’t start something that is either beyond your capabilities of beyond the time limit you have. If it’s a big job, section it and do some now and some later… that way you don’t have to live with the mess and chaos too long. Always finish one job before you start another.
CT1 No Gun – a unique adhesive and sealant for virtually any material and most applications
Preparation - probably the most important thing! Spend at least twice as long on your prep work than you do on the finishing work. That way the job will look better and last longer. Don’t forget you can start some of this ‘prep’ work before the weekend…. clear the room, cover the furniture, take the curtains down etc. This way when the weekend comes you can get cracking straight away.
Work from the top down – when decorating, it seems obvious when you mention it but a lot of people start with what is most apparent or closest to their line of sight. Don’t! Start with the ceiling and methodically work your way down the walls to the skirting boards. Wipe surfaces down periodically (especially before applying decorator’s caulk or filler),this way you don’t get cracks appearing three weeks later.
Feed the workers - remember an army marches on its stomach and so to do the DIYers! Lay in the supplies, tea/coffee and biscuits, and order a take-away for the Saturday night as by the time you finished sanding and filling you won’t feel much like cooking.
Takker Hard Wall Mounting Kit - handy all-in-one tool used for hanging pictures, mirrors and household objects onto any hard wall surfaces indoors and outdoors
I hope that these simple tips helps you sail through your DIY jobs without a hitch, but if you do need some help or solutions to any of your DIY needs don’t forget you can join us on Sunday morning at 10.00 am… but not for long ‘cos you’ll have to get back to that decorating!!
See QVC’s DIY section