Home > Mom's Life > Managing Your Home > Home Improvements > Getting Oriented to Home Improvement
|

Getting Oriented to Home Improvement

Building Codes and Your Project

It's hard to generalize about building codes, since localities make their own changes to the various standard codes, and there are three that apply in the United States. Others cover natural gas, electricity, plumbing, and heating, ventilating, air conditioning. You may need a building permit for a significant change, but not for a simple replacement. Thus you're usually okay putting in a new door, since that is replacing an existing feature. But you might need a permit to cut in a new door or window.

Only a local building inspector can tell you if your plans are permissible, if a licensed contractor must do the work, and if you need a building permit.

A Few Final Thoughts

First, don't drive yourself to distraction. If you are a perfectionist, you might do better to hire a premium home-improvement contractor (and then hope you don't find an apprentice or a slacker working on your job). As you complete a project, learn to say, “It's perfect enough,” or “That's the best I can do, and that makes it just fine.”

Second, doing it yourself is all about control. You control the design, the schedule, the materials, the overall effect of the project. While some do-it-yourself guides stress saving money, I'm more interested in the satisfaction of making your own designs, and then carrying them out.

Want to do something unconventional? Want to break the rules?

It's your house. And once you learn to improve it, it will be, in all senses, even more your house.

Find out some Must-Have Tools for Homeowners for getting started on your home improvement projects.



|

Excerpted from The Complete Idiot's Guide to Simple Home Improvements © 2004 by David J. Tenenbaum. All rights reserved including the right of reproduction in whole or in part in any form. Used by arrangement with Alpha Books, a member of Penguin Group (USA) Inc.

To order this book visit Amazon's web site or call 1-800-253-6476.


highlights

8 Quick Tips for Curbing Your Family's Screen Time
Setting limits on screen time — and remembering to put down our own devices — is one of the biggest parenting challenges of our time. Use this guide to create healthy screen-time rules for your whole family.

Find Today's Newest & Best Children's Books!
Looking for newly released books for your child? Try our new Book Finder tool to search for new books by age, type, and theme, and create reading lists for kids!

10 Best Beach-Themed Crafts and Activities
Sand, seashells, and stones can provide hours of family fun. Check out the greatest beach-related activities and crafts for toddlers on up.

Registered for Kindergarten — Now What?
Try our award-winning Kindergarten Readiness app! This easy-to-use checklist comes with games and activities to help your child build essential skills for kindergarten. Download the Kindergarten Readiness app today!

stay connected

Sign up for our free email newsletters and receive the latest advice and information on all things parenting.

Enter your email address to sign up or manage your account.

Facebook icon Facebook icon Follow Us on Pinterest

editor’s picks