Yard Work 101: DIY or Hire Out to a Pro?
For the first few years when you own your own home, you may wake up on a Saturday or Sunday morning, delighting in the fact that you finally get to cut your own yard, prune your own hedges, and plant your own vegetables or flowers. And while you might always feel that bit of pleasure while you live in that home, chances are good that there will come a day when yard work isn’t so exciting.
When cleaning up the yard is only about mowing the lawn for 20 or 30 minutes, it might be difficult to excuse yourself from the duty while you bring in (and pay for) a professional. But at other times, you need more extensive yard work done, such as creating a miniature vineyard, adding multiple terraces, even reseeding a large expanse of green grass in the spring.
Doing your own yard work is possible a lot of the time, but sometimes, it can cause more stress and may in fact cost more than hiring a professional would. Read on to find out when it just makes more sense to call on the pros.
When to Hire a Professional
Good professional yard workers often have years logged in the business, and a ton of experience to draw from. You, on the other hand, may only be experienced at walking the aisles of Home Depot and reading instruction manuals.
It is worth it to hire a professional when: you want to build out a small dog run (requiring yards of fence and digging trenches); you need to create a small self-irrigated orchard; and/or you just can’t see a way to do it yourself? The answer in those somewhat extreme cases seems obvious.
But the truth is, you don’t need to have an especially complicated plan for your yard if you want to hire a professional. Sometimes, just mowing the lawn is a task you don’t have the time or energy for. So the question of whether or not to hire a professional hinges on the following: how much is your time really worth to you?
The Time vs. Money Question
You can spend hours upon hours digging a small trench around the perimeter of your yard or rolling out strips of grass, when you could be reading a good book, spending time with family, or catching up on important business matters. So the question of time versus money is important here.
Do you want to spend time stressing out and digging endlessly, or do you want to spend a bit of extra money? Hiring a professional could also help you save money in the long run, because you won’t need to buy expensive tools or pieces of equipment such as lawn mowers, edgers, wood chippers, ladders and more. There’s also the possibility that with a job like adding sprinklers to the front lawn, no matter how many books you read on the subject, you still might make a costly error that results in wasted time and money.
When it comes to the bigger jobs, why not just hire out a professional?
For smaller jobs like weeding or cutting the lawn, there are cost-effective alternatives. Consider turning to a younger family member or neighborhood kid who might want to start his or her own business, making some extra allowance and working on the cheap for you. Or you can enlist the help of the Internet, and find a neighborhood job board or neighbor exchange that allows you to connect with people who may be looking for work, and living right around the block.
Little Jobs Around the Yard? Maybe You Can Tackle Those
If you’ve got a few plants that need re-potting or it’s time to trim the roses back, you can probably tackle those kinds of things yourself. And while it is entirely possible to dig up your entire front yard all by yourself, you’ll end up spending hours upon hours of your weekend on your knees in the dirt.
Or you could hire a professional and leisurely offer them lemonade while you go about your day doing other things!
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