Budget-friendly DIY upgrades and remodels can be a great tactic for improving a home’s value with little investment, but some DIY’s we have seen can range from potential minor damage to likely dangerous. Even when the work is completed by a professional, it is important to keep some of the design trends in mind that can actually be quite harmful.
A common décor feature in many homes we have inspected are floating shelves. These are wonderful additions to your home’s aesthetics, so long as they were installed properly. These shelves are typically not design for a lot of weight and are commonly not installed with enough support. If you are installing floating shelves (or already have) be sure to use molly bolts or wall anchors, especially when installing against drywall. Anytime you mount a shelf, you should ideally mount it to a stud, but since these aren’t always where you want to hang things, wall anchors can add support to your décor. When not properly supported floating shelves and other hanging décor can become overload and pull out from the wall, damaging the drywall, the shelving, and anything it may have been holding.
While antique appliances can add to a vintage aesthetic, provide a pop of pastel, or give a quirky, fun edge to a room, it can pose a major health risk. Many antique appliances were not built to the codes and requirements that modern appliances are. They can pose a high risk for starting electrical fires and usually are not equipped with built-in safety features. If you really want a more retro look, find manufacturers who are replicating old designs rather than shopping at antique stores and estate sales to ensure the safety of your home.
Much to the dismay of the younger generations, brick may have been covered over by drywall. This is reminiscent of the surprise of new homeowners discovering hardwood under the old shag carpet of the home they are renovating. However, the original hardwood floors brought delight—exposed brick may pose a health and environmental concern. Brick is a very porous material, making it a poor insulator and conduit for mold growth since it can capture and hold moisture. If you are set on the charm of exposed brick, be sure to have it properly sealed to prevent any later concerns.
Modified or Removed Handrails
Stairs in a home have never usually been considered an exciting design element, and many DIYers have taken it upon themselves to change that. However, removing the graspable handrail that is installed for a number of safety and code reasons, may enhance the design of the room but it can be potentially dangerous. This risk increases with floating staircases sans handrail.