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New homeowners make costly DIY mistakes

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18/08/2016
New homeowners make costly DIY mistakes

Over a fifth of first-time buyers are turning to lower priced properties that need ‘doing up’ and cutting costs by carrying out the work themselves, spending £4,600 in the process, according to Towergate.

But the specialist insurance broker said that they often pay a hefty price for attempting to do the work themselves.

Putting it right

On top of the initial cost of the work, more than a quarter (27%) of new homeowners have had to fork out extra cash for a professional contractor to fix their mistakes – costing an average £2,358.

According to the Office of National Statistics (ONS) the average price paid by a first-time buyer stands at £180,677, having risen 8.6% in the past year, with a typical new homeowner paying £1,114 on Stamp Duty – half as much as they are paying fixing DIY disasters.

Separate research among members of electrical contracting industry body NICEIC has shown a summer spike in callouts to fix DIY mistakes, with nearly a fifth (17%) of contractors reporting an increase in requests during this time of year.

Annie Plaskett, Towergate spokesperson, said: “Given the cost to get on the housing ladder, it’s not surprising first time buyers are looking for cheaper properties which require work. It also means they are looking to save costs on employing contractors choosing to do it themselves or use family and friends.

“However, as our research shows, undertaking ambitious projects with little to no formal training can leave new homeowners seriously out of pocket. To make matters worse, often accidents and mistakes aren’t covered by standard home insurance policies, making it more important to speak with your insurer before putting hammer to nail.”

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