First time homeowners!

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Jun 10, 2018
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Southern Indiana
Hi Everyone!

At the beginning of the year we bought our first home in southwestern Indiana, for what felt like a steal, despite moving during both the first and second snow storms of the year! It was built in 1979 and has had some previous attempts at minor updating and remodeling. However it wasn't until we owned the property that we could tell none of these were done properly, let alone by a professional.
So that's what brings us here!

Although the homes previous attempts at "do-it-yourself" projects has proven to be a complete bust, we're as well interested in doing most of the work ourselves... except this time the RIGHT WAY. We're still learning the homeowner lingo, so please forgive our rough attempts at describing our issues!

We look forward to any and all advice everyone has to offer!


Fixer Upper
Staff member
Feb 5, 2013
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Erie, PA

DIY has quite a few components. Of course skill level is one of them. Things can be shown and explained and most are not out of the realm of what the average person can do after some practice. The more you do a task the better you become.

Then there are the tools of the trade and many times the job is only as good as the tools used to do it. There are many ways to do the same thing and finding the right tools to do the job that still fit your budget is a trick.

Then there is expectations, and biting off more than you can chew. I once had a huge 2 story wood house. I was a young man and it needed cleaned, scraped and painted. I started in and worked part time a couple weeks. It seemed like I was working in slow motion. I finally gave in and called in a guy I knew that was a professional painter. He came out and looked at what I had done and said my work looked great. He asked if I had planned on doing the job myself? He told me he had done 100’s of houses and he wouldn’t dream of painting my house as a one man job by himself. This was a guy with all the equipment you would ever need to paint a house. He said a project that big will just wear you down. If I hadn’t put in the couple weeks I wouldn’t have understood his comment. Instead I never forgot it. Understanding your limitations is every bit as important as being able to do it.

Place your DIY resources where you will get the most from your time spent. View your own labor as worthy of a paycheck. Sometimes it is important to know the skill so you know it is getting done right even if you don’t do the work.

Welcome to the forum. You will pick up the lingo in no time and until then don’t worry about saying things a little off. Pictures also help a lot and we will all help as best we can.