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When to DIY….and When to Hire Out


I am constantly being bombarded with choices. 


So much information, and so many choices. 


Ordering dinner at the Cheesecake factory seems like more of a chore than a treat, and I can’t even tell you how many hours I spent planning my own wedding or preparing and executing the shopping list ahead of the birth of my son.  (Analysis paralysis at times has my name written all over it.)


I’ve found though that one of the gifts that comes with age can be self-awareness.  As I’ve gone screaming into my 40’s, I have willingly accepted the realization that because of my busy lifestyle, tendency to stick myself into that analysis paralysis zone, and the likelihood that I may (will) put things on the perpetual back burner that I don’t like…sometimes I need to hire help. 


Over the years, I’ve taken a close look at the decisions that people make around hiring, or not hiring professional help.  As HGTV does a GREAT job illustrating, some folks ROCK IT at DIY, and others should have paid an electrician to begin with. 


We all fall into that category with something or other, don’t we?


I’ve put together an informal list to consider when you’re trying to decide whether you want to hire help, or broach taking on a task yourself. 


When DIY could be right:


  1. You love the project, and possibly even enjoy the research needed to complete the task.  


  1. You know that it’s something that you will be able to do. 


  1. You also know that you’ll make the time to complete, (and possibly maintain it) on your own (effortlessly or with little effort). Let’s face it, many of us don’t make the time to do something (like exercise) without an accountability partner to answer to. 



And when you’ll want to consider hiring help to get something done: 


  1. When you can’t complete the task yourself (or risk burning down the house if you do). 

If it’s complex, your specialties lie in other areas or the information is not available to do this task yourself.


  1. When you really don’t want to, let’s admit it…there are just times that the decision is clear and you’d rather write a check!


  1. Finally, and here is the trickiest one, when it’s something that is at risk of just not getting done


Will it be a back burner item for the next 2+ years?


Is getting this task done, something that you know you will prioritize, or while it consistently be a burdening back burner item that you know you “should” be doing but just cant seem to make time for it?


An example of this in my world would be: Annually remembering to save for and fund your IRA’s, staying on top of your investments, making sure your savings is on track to hit both your short and long term goals, making sure you’re not over or under insured (or that you’re paying too much for that car insurance!), and that your credit has been checked in the last few months.



So next time you’re sitting down, facing a task that needs to be completed, you can use the points above to help make the decision of whether or not to do It yourself, or hire help.For most of us, hiring help is necessary in some areas while DIY can be most cost effective and efficient in others.


~ Wendi

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Check the background of this financial professional on FINRA's BrokerCheck