Home improvement projects can be immensely satisfying, and with the right back-up, they don’t have to be too complicated!
Here are four DIY projects that you can do at home - with perhaps a little bit of help from a professional!
1. Increase storage space
If you’re living in a small house or apartment, think creatively about how you might add some storage space. Have you considered using your roof space?
Installing a pull-down attic ladder isn’t a difficult job. You’ll need a platform ladder a jigsaw and a cordless drill. Locate a suitable site for the frame between your ceiling joists, ensuring there is room below to pull down the ladder. Cut out the plasterboard and attach the frame to the joists.
Another potential storage space is under the stairs. This could be the spot for a walk-in pantry, a kitchen appliance workroom, euro laundry, linen storage area, toy room, extra wardrobe or wine cellar.
The big hardware stores have an amazing range of drawer, cupboard and wardrobe storage flatpacks that are suitable for DIYers and professionals alike. The beauty of these flatpack systems is that they are modular, so they will fit virtually any space. Depending on your skill level and confidence, you can replace an entire kitchen over a weekend.
Get some great inspiration from the Kennards Hire how-to guides and articles. If you need some professional help with the project, find a handyman at hipages.
2. Rejuvenate timber floors
Is your ugly old carpet hiding beautiful old floorboards? Timber floors don’t just look good but are low allergy and easy to keep clean.
Rejuvenating a timber floor is well within reach of DIYers with the right equipment. Our short video takes you through the process. First punch in all the nails and fill the nail holes with a timber filler or putty, along with any larger holes in the floor. Use a paint scraper to remove any old adhesive.
Seal the floor with an oil- or water-based varnish or polyurethane. Use a paintbrush to cut in around the skirting boards and a lambswool applicator for the larger areas.
If you prefer to leave this task to the experts, hipages can help you find a local professional floor sander.
3. Update your lighting
Anything involving wiring needs to be done by a licensed electrician, but there are other lighting jobs you can do that will save you money and brighten your home, including changing outdated shades and bulbs.
The most energy-efficient thing you can do around your house is to replace incandescent, halogen or fluorescent bulbs with LED ones. The great news is that you probably don’t even need to replace your fixture: simply choose bulbs with the same fitting.
A 6-watt LED bulb emits as much light as a 40-watt incandescent bulb. They also last up to 10 times as long. LED bulbs come in a great range of colours from cold blue to warm yellow that can make a big difference to the mood of a room.
While you need an electrician to install a downlight, you can replace the bulb yourself. Check out this hipages guide to changing a LED downlight for instructions on the three different types of downlight – spring clips, a twist face plate and a removable face plate.
LED strip lighting can be a good solution for a reading area or in the kitchen or bathroom, and you can install this yourself. Simply cut to length, attach to the ceiling or under cupboards and plug it in.
Just make sure you have a secure platform ladder for any of these tasks!
If you decide to change your downlight fittings, you can buy an LED kit but the job will have to be done by a licensed electrician. Find a reliable, local electrician at hipages.
4. Refresh your home with paint
With a tin of paint, a brush and a roller, you can virtually transform a room in a few hours. Lighten and brighten it, and add a splash of colour. If you’re on a tight budget, it’s a job you can do yourself.
Taking the time to set up properly with trestles and planks first will make the job easier. Use a steamer to remove wallpaper and adhesives. Fill in any cracks or holes in the plaster then finish off with a plaster board sander & vacuum. Tape over power points and around window sills or door frames.
It’s cheaper to buy paint in bulk so try to pick a colour you can use throughout the house. That’s why white is so popular! Using the same paint on the ceilings also saves an awful lot of fiddly work getting straight edges.
Transform chipped, scratched, dull doors, cupboards and drawers in the kitchen or bathroom with a coat of bright gloss paint. Scrape off any loose paint (a paint burner may be useful), and sand. Use a primer/undercoat to cover imperfections and provide a good base for the topcoat. Finish the job with new handles for a quick and effective makeover.
If you have a large area to paint, or an uneven surface, think about spray painting. The process can seem daunting the first time but this Kennards Hire video will guide you through it. This is a very quick and economical way of painting with minimal waste. Kennards Hire also has a range of sprayers from a handheld battery sprayer for small interior and specialist projects to large petrol driven and electrical sprayers.