Expert: If in doubt, Britons should call for electricians and plumbers

With the bank holiday weekend just a couple of days away, attention in many British households is likely turning to home improvements and the prospect of carrying out some DIY. Whether you want to paint a bedroom, build an extension or tidy up the garden, a three-day escape from work will provide the perfect time to do so.

But that is not to say that taking on such tasks alone is always a good idea. Indeed, if there is any doubt whatsoever regarding the level of safety you have for the job in hand, you should turn to a professional tradesman. Similarly, if you do not feel you have the skills to complete a task to a high standard, it is worth paying for an expert to come in and excel.

Interiors journalist Ellie Tenant has issued her advice on the subject, noting it simply is not worth risking any work you do not feel you are up to. Indeed, she recommended turning to electricians, plumbers and heating engineers rather than bodging a job.

“Anything to do with electrics where you don’t know what you’re doing you should definitely get an electrician in for. You can do things like changing the light fittings yourself – you can turn the mains power of your house off and then attempt it,” she explained.

“But personally I think plumbing and electricity are the two things where, if you do go wrong, it could be very serious. You could flood your house or potentially electrocute somebody. ”

Ms Tenant went on to admit that many Britons often feel nervous about DIY as they believe they will “mess it up”. After all, there are many jobs that need doing you simply will not be able to do. Can you build an extension, construct a conservatory or fit a new kitchen? The answer, in most cases, will be no and it is at these times that it is surely worth turning to an expert.

That is not to say you cannot attempt small jobs by yourself, although even in these cases a higher quality finish is assured if you turn to a local tradesman.

Ms Tenant’s advice is similar to that issued by Anna-Marie DeSouza, editor of Build It + Home Improvement magazine, last month. She told how she believed all major tasks should be handed to professionals as they know plenty about crucial areas that the average homeowner is oblivious to.

She suggested you should simply ask yourself two questions – are you confident in your ability to carry out home improvements and have you done it before? If the answer to either is no, then it is not worth taking a chance.

Of course, a decision on whether to hire a tradesman will ultimately come down to your own circumstances. How urgent the work is, what you can afford, the availability of professionals and how dangerous the job could be are all crucial factors, but when possible it is certainly worth paying out for a qualified expert.

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