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Know the Risks When It Comes to Building Projects

Ready to tackle that home extension? Or take on building a new shed? No matter what kind of DIY job you’re facing, large or small, it’s important to keep safety first. You could always choose to seek representation from a firm like Irwin Mitchell if something goes awry, but it’s much wiser to protect yourself from the outset by being aware of the building risks you may face. Here’s what you need to know.

DIY doesn’t literally mean “do it yourself”.

Even if you feel that the building project that you’re starting is a one-person job, always call for at least one more person to back you up. It’s dangerous to try to lift or carry big and bulky parts by yourself, so at least recruit a family member or friend to help you get started.

Using appropriate tools is more important than you think.

Making sure not to take shortcuts when it comes to gathering your tools is also a matter of safety. Never try to use tools that are too bulky, too small or not the right shape for the project that you’re doing. And when you use power tools, make sure to secure the electrical cords so that no one trips over them. When you’re done, turn off the tools and unplug them to avoid accidents.

You should get an inspection before disturbing hidden materials.

Products like insulation could possibly carry mould that can make you and your family sick. Or, even more seriously, your home could have asbestos insulation, which can cause long-term health problems if inhaled. Once you decide which area of your home you want to build in, make sure to get it professionally checked so that your DIY project doesn’t turn into a disaster.

Your clothing is the most important tool you have.

Before you start, it’s a good idea to cover as much skin as possible. Wear denim trousers that are loose enough to move in yet not too baggy are standard building wear. You can also keep covered by wearing a shirt with sleeves and boots or thick tennis shoes to cover your feet.

Your timeline will shift.

As you progress through your building project, you’ll find that your schedule changes. Maybe you didn’t get a permit in time or you had to order extra materials, for example. Your project costs could also increase, so it’s good to give yourself a 20 percent buffer when you are calculating how much time and money it will take for you to finish. It’s important to remain flexible instead of rushing through your DIY job. This turns out to be the ultimate risk because it affects not only the quality of your project but also your commitment to safety.

Peter Christopher

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