My desire to DIY is not just an economic decision, but I am afraid that I'm a bit of a control freak. My dad worked in the construction business and I grew up helping him with projects around the house. My unnatural desire to paint things (walls, furniture, light fixtures, houses) comes from him.

Growing up, we had a lovely little house just outside New Your City that my dad would paint inside and our every couple of years. Back then paint wasn't as hearty as it is now. Couple that fact with the fact that there were 7 people in an 1100sq ft house, and the need to pain that often was evident. Dad would finish a paint job and our house would appear so clean and fresh. The job was instant gratification ! I mean, except for the 3 weeks of work that he just did in his off time. Not only would the paint be fresh, but we would clean out the rooms that were just painted and get rid of anything that didn't need to return into them after the job. DIY projects brought order and freshness to our crowded little house. It isn't just painting, any project is an opportunity to streamline how you use your space. When you become invested in a space, you don't want to clutter it with garbage. You want to use it and enjoy it. 

I know that I am a control freak, but sometimes you have got to bring in a professional. One such job for us was the roof. I know nothing about roofing. I know it requires you to be way to far off the ground. I don't want to be that high up without an elevator or plane! We got about 6 quotes for the roof and they varied in price by almost $6,000. We ended up choosing a contractor who's quote was in the middle. He was a nice guy who took the time to answer our questions and explain the details of the job to us. We talked to him about the other quotes and told him that we really wanted to use him but we needed him to work with us on the price. He brought his price down closer to the lower end of the spectrum and we went with him. There are several things to take away from this. First of all, you have to choose the contractor that gives you the best product. In most cases, his/her time can be considered “product”. Second of all, contractors may be willing to work with you on the price. If you aren't completely low balling them and are reasonable, you may have some luck getting them to lower the quote. The worst they can do is say “no”, so you might as well ask. It will not physically hurt you to have someone say “no” to you!