Sunday, February 14, 2010

Ranting Stan's Irrational Hatred Of The Week: D-I-Y

When I say "D-I-Y", I don't mean decorating or basic home maintenance - it's the duty of every husband to know how to fix a dripping tap or hang wallpaper - I mean the full on home "improvement" stuff that often involves knocking down walls, serious rewiring and re-routing mains plumbing.

There are two reasons why I hate D-I-Y. The first is that virtually everybody who does it is actually not very good at it. When Mrs. Stan and I bought our first home the previous owner was a keen D-I-Y enthusiast. On the surface everything looked pretty good. A stunning new bathroom and a nicely finished kitchen were a couple of the "highlights". However, beneath the surface it was a complete botch job. It was only when I called in my electrician mate to look at a problem with blowing light bulbs that I discovered that the wiring was not only badly done - it was bloody dangerous. It cost more than £4000 to put right. The plumbing was just as bad, but cheaper to fix.

The next home we bought was almost as bad. It's hard to say how much it would have cost to put things right had we not had the builders in doing other work anyway, but it only added another £2000 to the overall cost of the work. So when we bought this house we made sure it was alright before we signed the contract - although even then we had a bit of an issue with some previous owners handiwork.

So that's the first reason why I hate D-I-Y - that and the fact that virtually every enthusiast of the hobby not only botches it in some way, they also usually think they are pretty good! The other reason is that the rise of D-I-Y has meant an increased disruption to the peace and quiet of weekends with the noise of power tools. Hardly a weekend goes by without one of my neighbours (both keen D-I-Yers) firing up a power drill, jigsaw or electric sander. Back in the days when most of us used professionals to do this sort of work for us those noises were confined to the working week - because the professionals liked to have their weekends off as well.

D-I-Y - I hate it.

1 comment:

Mark Wadsworth said...

"LSE" is the way forwards. Let somebody else.