There has been a huge decline in consumer confidence with regards to builders and the construction industry in general. Because of this DIY has seen a big increase with people doing their home improvements themselves.
Why not, surely a little understanding of the practical aspects combined with an eye for creativity is enough to do the improvements on your own? So why are people turning to do-it-yourself home improvements instead of hiring a building contractor to create their dream home, or carry out renovation work?
The problem is, there are many construction workers who don’t have the relevant knowledge or expertise required to carry out the building work. These builders are operating all over the country and are making peoples’ lives a misery, cheating them out of hard earned money and destroying their dreams. These builders have earned themselves the nickname ‘cowboy builders’ after homeowners were finding that their building projects were not meeting their satisfaction. In some instances they even find themselves having to prepay for services, which either don’t get done or are not part of the original plans. This lack of confidence with the construction industry is leaving many customers with a bitter taste and because of this they are turning to DIY to create dreams.
You don’t have to call in the builders to improve your home, why not try to it yourself?
Concrete doesn’t have to be dull and boring; it can be given a new lease of life even after it has cured, without having to hire a skilled tradesman. If your patio, driveway or paths are starting to look dreary, here are some easy ways to give them a refreshing new look by using acid stains, acrylic stains, epoxy paints, and scoring techniques. Pattern imprinted concrete can be an eye catcher when used on drives and pathways, but it usually costs more than double or sometimes triple the price of regular concrete. This being the case, many people who are unable to afford it opt for a cheaper option of block paving or tarmac.
However, acid based concrete stains are becoming more and more popular for colouring concrete surfaces. They chemically react with the concrete to produce a permanent colour with a multicoloured or dappled appearance similar to marble. This results in a natural, stylish looking surface. Water based concrete stains are an option to using acid and they are much more environmentally friendly and a lot less toxic. Unlike the acid these stains don’t chemically react with the concrete; instead they are absorbed by the pores on the surface acting like a dye. There is also a wider range of colours available too, allowing for greater creativity.
If you want to go beyond the basic staining of your concreted area you might consider using some scoring techniques to create patterns on the surface. You are only restricted by your own imagination. An ideal tool for this job would be a 4 inch grinding or cutting wheel, which if you don’t own one you can hire them at your local tool hire store. It’s important to keep in mind that before you start to score the concrete you should draw the pattern on the surface first and adjust until you are totally satisfied with it, as scoring is permanent.
In recent years residential property owners have been using epoxy paints, they are a great way to cover concrete garage and basement floors. With many commercial properties using it because of its high durability factor and it’s resistance to chemical spills. It has become very popular not only for these reasons but also because of the increasing range of colours that are available. This is not a complex project, but the finishing effect depends on the surface preparation. Epoxy paints are also available in a water based form with no harmful chemicals, which can affect a person’s breathing making it safer for the DIY’er and ideal for all indoor areas, although they do cost a little more than stains.
You can save money by doing the work yourself, but like the ‘cowboy builders’ do you have the skills to make the job look professional? If not then this could be a very costly exercise, there is more to creating a masterpiece than most people give the experts cred