I’m the person who does not read the instructions, dives into a home improvement project, and makes it up as I go along. What can happen that can’t be fixed later, right? That’s a great mentality if you have a ton of time and money to waste, but not for an everyday person with a job and a budget. Here are a few lessons I (and my poor husband) learned the hard way:
Paint: oil-based or water-based…you’d better believe it makes a difference!
We had painted half of our home’s interior with water-based paint. All went well until we started painting the kitchen. As I used the foam roller on the walls, I noticed the paint was not sticking. It was like smearing globs of jelly on a plastic surface. I later found out that the kitchen and bathrooms were painted with an oil-based paint. My water-based paint basically ran off the walls and made for a sticky mess that never did dry properly.
What we should have done: Most kitchens and bathrooms are painted with oil-based paints. We should have applied primer to the walls first so that oil OR water- based paints would adhere to them.
Crown molding nightmare
With the molding painted and cut at the perfect angles, we were ready to do the installation. We had purchased wood glue to affix the pieces. On the glue tube, it read “..perfect for installing crown molding”. After following the directions to the letter, we found ourselves desperately pressing the molding against the ceiling with broomstick handles. Not only did the glue not adhere to the wall, but it left this goopy mustard-colored mess on the molding and the ceiling.
What we should have done : Rented a nail gun. No need for broomsticks. No goopy mess.
That looks nothing like the picture in the magazine
It was supposed to be the perfect bathroom makeover. We had painted the walls in pastel colors to brighten up an otherwise small, dark bathroom. To contrast with the light colors, we purchased an espresso-colored bathroom vanity and matching medicine cabinet. Things were going smoothly, until I picked out the tile for the shower. We were over-budget on this project, and I decided to be cheap. And that’s exactly what the shower looked like: cheap faux marble.Two months later, the thin waterproof veneer was peeling off of those shower tiles, much like paint peels off an old car.
What we should have done: Bought the quality tile!! An extra $200 for the right tile would have prevented the extra $1,000 it took to completely re-do the job.