Do It Yourself Home Repairs

Sometimes I miss the old days when men knew how to fix anything and women sat back and watched. Unfortunately, we live in an age when most men haven't been taught how to put a nail in the wall, or so I've been led to believe by my husband.

There is always something wrong in our house. This month it was the gutters, the garbage disposal, and the front door. If we had had to call in a professional to fix all three problems it would have cost us over $300 easily.

There are certain things you need to know in order to fix things of course. There are also safety issues to think about. For the garbage disposal we knew a few things. First, it's powered by electricity so we checked for blown fuses Second, it works by blades going around in circles so we checked to make sure nothing was blocking them. Now we were stumped when we didn't find any problems with either of those aspects of the disposal. We figured it was a goner. Now we have never replaced a disposal but my husbands brother just did a couple of months ago and his father has also. So we called them. My father in law figured out that there is a little button that you push if there is an electrical surge, that restarts the disposal. That was it! One push of a little button. We would have paid $25 for 15 minutes of a plumbers time to tell us that.

The front door we knew would be pretty easy to fix. The door jam was split in half after my husband locked himself out and had to break in. All we had to do was replace the frame, put the cornice back on and repaint the wall where the paint had been pulled off. Stores like Home Depot will cut wood at very reasonable prices and even give you advice on how to fix it properly. We saved ourselves $200.

Now the gutters are a little different. We knew they would be very easy to fix and clean. However, as my husband started climbing the ladder, that we frugally borrowed, all I could picture was him falling off and spending the next month in the hospital healing all of his broken bones. I immediately made him get down and call a professional. Luckily he agreed, and we know a man who lives in our development that offers discounts to residents. We paid $50 for the repairs and cleaning, and spared ourselves endless painfull days had my husband fallen.

Every home repair is different, but with a little research, a little hard work, a little common sense, and an appreciation for your limits, you can save yourself a lot of money and stay safe.

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