Become Your Own Personal Home Improvement Specialist or Hire It Out

If you look around your current home there are endless projects you can do, and many of them will save you money on your energy bills, or increase the property value. Not to mention there is a good sense of pride knowing that you have upgraded your home, and that you did it yourself. Perhaps this is why big box home improvement stores like Lowe’s and Home Depot have done so well here the United States and abroad. Interestingly enough, they are not doing as well in all markets. Okay so, let’s talk about shall we?

On September 15, 2012 the Wall Street Journal had an article “Home Depot: Chinese Prefer Do-It-For-Me” by Laurie Burkitt. It turns out that in China citizens prefer often enough to pay someone else to do the work rather than do it themselves, and the article noted that Home Depot is considering closing all 7 of its stores in China.

You would think that the Chinese would enjoy doing things themselves, and also wishing to save the money. Many come from humble beginnings, and families who were engaged in farming, they had to do everything themselves, and make do. Nevertheless, city life has changed much of that, and perhaps this is why the home improvement centers and big box stores of this type just haven’t caught on in China. Maybe they will the future, but that is an unknown that large corporations can’t risk with shareholders equity, or the need to maintain quarterly profits in their Chinese operations.

It’s not that the Chinese are not resourceful people, they very much are rather they would simply wish to put their trust in a tradesman, a specialist who knows what they are doing. In many regards this is good for small business development, and it shows a respect for the craftsman. Still, small businesses looking for building materials and supplies are more apt to go to a wholesale distributor rather than a Home Depot big box home improvement center. Do you see that point?

You shouldn’t be too surprised with this as all cultures are different and each values different things, and different groups within their own society often have different thinking. Middle-class Chinese would rather hire someone who specializes to come in and do the work for them rather than doing it themselves and perhaps screwing it up.

They wouldn’t want anything that wasn’t done correctly, and they probably do not trust themselves doing the job because they don’t have a decade or more of experience in that particular home improvement skill. Indeed I hope you will please consider all this and think on it.

Remodeling Your Home – Free Advice From the Experts!

There’s an upside to the economic downturn. Are you thinking of remodeling instead of building? Now is a great time.
I would caution you, however. Tackle a home improvement for the right reasons and do it with style. And by that I mean that it’s more important now than ever to put serious thought into function, aesthetics, and quality.
Gone are the days when you can just get an idea, throw it up, and increase the home’s value.
Good Reasons to Remodel Today
Reasons for your home improvement are personal. And I’m in agreement that you should get what you want and need when you remodel your home. But, there are always trade-offs in building so it is vital to evaluate your goals.
What are you really trying to achieve? Take some time to list everything that you’ve been wanting. Here are some ideas to get you started:

  • You just need more room for a growing family or in-laws
  • You want to give your home a face-lift for added value
  • You want to create space for entertaining
  • You want to add the luxury components that you’ve always wanted
  • You need to add a bathroom, laundry, or expand the kitchen

Now, go deeper. I advise you to expand on the broader goals and include all the things you want within those goals. This will help both you and any professionals you talk with later.
Whatever your personal goals are, the next step is to list the reasons for them and then prioritize them. When you prioritize, you have a good basis from which to analyze which things you may wish to eliminate when push comes to shove. When remodeling, there are constraints due to money, time, design problems and other issues that arise.
Which Experts and Why Are They so Valuable?
If you’ve followed my work, you know that I’m all for the owner builder and the do-it-yourselfer. I believe in people, their abilities, and their passions. But, you probably also know that I believe in getting expert advise and professional help along the way. Here are some experts to consider talking with:

  • Home Interior Designers
  • Feng Shui Home Design Experts
  • Architects & Residential designers
  • Structural Engineers
  • Design & Build General Contractors
  • Remodeling Contractors

Experts provide value. Experts keep us out of trouble. They can pass along years of experience that the layman couldn’t possibly have. We pay them for their services yes, but we can also benefit from their free advice.
Experts Are Looking For Work … And Giving Away Ideas
Now that you know what experts are out there and you are armed with your list of goals and priorities, you can start calling and meeting with them. They do want to help. Most are willing to discuss your plans and give you advice. Be up front with them. Tell them you’re planning and preparing. They’ll want to give you ideas to earn your business.
The ideas and help you receive can really help you clarify your goals and get you moving forward. And you just may find a valuable professional to work with at the same time.
So, don’t let the doom and gloom get you down. Life goes on. Your home is your castle. Create your dream with a well-planned remodel.