Kathy Foran - REALTY EXECUTIVES Boston West



Posted by Kathy Foran on 5/5/2013

It can be tempting to tackle home projects yourself but in the long run it may be better to leave some home renovations to the professionals. Here are a few projects you might want to leave off the DIY list: 1. Roofing-Roofing can be a time sink. As a do-it-yourselfer you probably will not be able to complete the project in a short enough period of time to avoid exposing your home to damage from the elements. 2. Electrical-Poor electrical work is a safety hazard.  There are safety codes that need to be followed and just because you were able to wire something and it worked, doesn't mean you haven't created a safety hazard. 3. Insulation-Homeowners often assume that installing insulation like fiberglass is an easy project. It can be easy to leave gaps that draw heat and moisture into your walls creating a much bigger problem. Insulation contractors usually get a much better deal on the material costs than you would, offsetting the cost of the labor. 4. Structural work-The structural work on a home should always be left to a professional. Structural work or changes should be drawn or approved by an engineer, whose specifications should be followed to the letter. Don't take chances here. Have you ever tackled a DIY project you thought should have been done by a professional? Share your story.





Posted by Kathy Foran on 4/7/2013

Updating your home can be costly. So any home improvement that you can do yourself will help save money. An easy update that doesn't cost too much and that you can do yourself is replacing your moulding. Whether you have basic trim, or common colonial style, there are a variety of new looks you can give to your home. To start, you'll need these tools:

  • a miter box or miter saw, for those angle cuts
  • a coping saw, for thin cuts so moulding meets flush to each other
  • finishing nails
  • a hammer, or finish nail gun
  • a nail set to sink nails below the wood surface
  • a tape measure
When making cuts, where the pieces of wood join together will determine what type of cut to make. Mitering allows for to pieces to join, like around the window. Splicing is used for long walls where one piece of wood is not enough. The moulding joins together by creating 2 45 degree angle cuts, cut opposite, creating a scarf joint, which is less noticeable. Coping is used on inside corners, where only 1 piece of wood is cut at a 45 degree angle and butts up against the other piece of wood. Your moulding doesn't have to be just the style bought at the store. Layers varies types of trim can add a more elaborate and dramatic touch. Home improvement stores will often have free booklets that give you ideas. Just remember to choose a style that matches your home. Something too dramatic in a home that is modest may look out of place. And don't forget there is more to moulding than your baseboard and window casing. Chair rails and crown moulding can really transform a room. There are a variety of decorative trims to choose from to add your own personal touch. Moulding tends to be around $1.00 a foot so depending on your room size, whether you layer trims, and if you add on elements such as chair rails, you could redo a room for a couple of hundred dollars. And make a big impact at the same time.