Most homeowners in Bangkok would agree that building and renovation costs are on the rise, due to the increased cost of materials and labour; if you have decided to make a few improvements yourself, here are a few tips from seasoned DIY-ers.
- Invest in top-quality tools and equipment – Don’t make the mistake of buying cheap tools; learn from others and always opt to pay a little more for the top brand. There are 1000s of YouTube videos reviewing building tools and we recommend searching for the brand in forums.
- Be creative – Check out the online DIY sites where you can find out about hand-crafted polyurethane moulding (known as บัวพื้นโพลียูรีเทน in Thai) from a leading Thai supplier. Plaster can be used to great effect to give you stunning interior walls, with any colour you fancy and the plasterer is skilled with his hand tools and combs to create unique patterns and finishes. You can spend a few hours browsing the online interior design mags, plus there are online forums if you have any queries on any aspect of home improvements.
- Planning projects – Once you choose a project such as a bathroom renovation, you can create lists and draw up a large diagram (cool software online). You can acquire materials and tools from the online supplier, where prices are at their lowest. Cost the project first and make sure that you know what you are going to do, from start to finish. Set a date for the project to start and do what you can to protect furniture and fittings.
- YouTube – Whether hanging a door, making a cabinet or repairing a roof, there are ‘how to’ videos to show you every step of the project. You could build a house from the footings to the roof with zero building experience, so if you are less than 100% sure, search YouTube and watch how the professionals do it.
- Safety first – Always wear eye goggles when using power tools of any description and be careful when holding sharp tools; working at height is only recommended if you have a safe platform; wearing a hard hat is compulsory on construction sites, and it could save your life one day!
When looking to buy materials, appliances or tools, search online for the best deals; forging an alliance with a local building materials supplier will make all the difference. Think of the thousands of baht that you will save in the future, as your DIY skills improve and you tackle larger projects.