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Don’t become a DIY ‘Have a go Harry’

A new breed of clueless homeowners have been dubbed ‘Have a go Harrys’ after a survey earlier this year revealed that one in five have started a DIY job which they have no idea how to finish.

Don’t become a DIY ‘Have a go Harry’

The survey of the nation’s DIY habits by the Electrical Contractors Association (ECA) also found that ‘Have a go Harrys’ do learn from their mistakes, with the chance of overestimating DIY skills decreasing with age. 28% of 16-29 year olds admitted being a ‘Harry’ but the figure gradually decreased until it reached 15% in the over 60s.

The Welsh are the worst offenders of ‘Have a go Harry’ syndrome, with 31% admitting to starting a job beyond their skill level, whilst those in the North East and Yorkshire were least likely to overestimate their skills, with only 11% admitting to making this mistake.
Surprisingly, of those admitting to ‘Have a go Harry’ syndrome, only half hired a tradesman to fix their blundered attempts.

David Pollock, ECA Group CEO, comments: “It doesn’t surprise me in the slightest that many homeowners overestimate their DIY knowledge. What does surprise me is that only half of those who cannot complete a job ask a tradesman to finish it for them. It begs the question – what do the other half do?

“Whilst it is fine to attempt small DIY jobs yourself, when contemplating bigger, often more dangerous, tasks it is always better to get in a professional. If you do find yourself at the stage where you have started a job and realise that you don’t know how to finish it, please call in a tradesman, as what you have already done may be unsafe.”

Many homeowners attempting their own DIY are probably unaware of Part P of the Building Regulations. Part P regulates the installation of electrical wiring in dwellings to minimise the risk of injury.

Part P specifies that, with the exception of minor works such as replacing sockets or ceiling roses, anyone undertaking any domestic installation work must notify their Local Authority Building Control before work begins unless the work is being carried out by a Part P registered installer

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