From handling work and family commitments and keeping up with the necessary house chores and projects, it becomes clear for some families that doing it all yourself is making you miserable. But how do you know what’s worth paying for and what’s definitely a DIY task? Well, there’s a viral Reddit thread that answers this — and might provide you a sign that it’s time to put down the power tools and walk away.
Reddit user u/LCKilgore posted a call asking, “What is absolutely worth paying someone else to do?” in the popular r/AskReddit community, and users offered a variety of opinions and advice. A quick read through the thousands of comments, it’s clear that anyone who can afford to outsource whatever they want out of their home has a few first tasks they let the pros do instead.
What’s funny about the thread, too, is just how much it reveals that everyone is different. What some people would happily take on — say, fixing their plumbing themselves, or doing their own laundry — to others, is an inconvenience or task that is too great to bear. You know those people who are able to wire new lighting but don’t know how to change the oil in their cars? Yeah, this thread is for them.
According to a 2015 survey of 2,000 people, from E.On, a British Energy Company, moving is regarded as one of “life's most stressful moments” for six out of 10 people, so it’s no surprise that so many Redditors in the viral thread suggested to offset some of the responsibilities, bite that bullet, and pay for movers.
"Movers. After a certain age, beer and food aren’t enough to help move everything from one home to another," u/inkedwaifu answered.
u/Plus-Statistician80 agreed that paying for movers is worth the money to pay someone else for you and your friends. “YES. Call the professionals, nobody wants to help you move. Ever,” they warned.
u/un_popcorno adds that paying for movers is especially worth it if you're over a certain age: “Moving your furniture if you’re over 30. The potential backache is just not worth it anymore.”
2. Cleaning Service
If you’re a parent, you know that your life is about 50% dedicated to picking up your house — whether it’s the deep clean, the toy sweep, or the big messes that happen day-to-day. And all of that cleaning (who does it, and when, and why) can lead to some major resentments, which is why so many Redditors agree that hiring cleaners a little bit can go a long way.
“If you live with someone else, a housecleaner,” u/survivalothefittest replied. “Unless one of you loves cleaning so much it's like a hobby, it will reduce stress and friction among those you live with.”
u/switchfaze felt the same way saying that getting a cleaning service is “worth it each month,” and u/cheesesashimi called hiring cleaners a “game-changer” for them and their partner: “Even though we occasionally talk about canceling it to cut costs, we inevitably come to the conclusion that keeping it benefits us enormously.”
In the threads, people talked about how beneficial it is to have a cleaning service, whether you use them weekly on schedule or call them to come in for the deep cleanings. It saves time and can reduce relationship conflicts by sharing more of the physical and mental load.
3. DIY Home Improvement
Several people pointed out that trying to DIY certain home upkeep tasks is not worth it. These tasks typically have full professions to execute, like plumbers and electricians. While having a professional costs money, Redditors felt it’s worth paying someone for safety alone.
“Plumbing. Even the smallest inconveniences can be an absolute mess to deal with,” u/tom-cash2002 wrote. Pee-yew!
Another Redditor noted roofing as one of the worst tasks to do on your own. “... A new roof's worth of shingles weighs a ton, and a pro has a very handy machine to scoot it all up there all easy like,” u/NerdDesNordens answered. “Plus the fall risk, all the bending over. Yeah, no thanks. Take my money.”
And while painting a bedroom — nesting, anyone? — might seem like an easy task, but some people seem to just hate it: “... Painting your room sucks. Laying down sheets so it doesn't drip on the floor, taping edges and moldings, and worse of all, painting the ceiling,” wrote u/desdmona. “My back aches just remembering.”
“Major electrical work,” one Redditor wrote, simply. Another responded in agreement, saying: “As an electrician, I’ve seen the result of people who thought they could do it themselves. Ended up costing them double.” In other words, just because it’s cheaper now, doesn’t mean it’ll stay cheaper later.
4. Landscaping and Yard Work
Yes, yes. Dads (stereotypically) love yard work, even if Hank Hill from King Of The Hill once famously asked, “Why would anyone do drugs when they could just mow a lawn?”
Still. The task is not for everyone.
“Every Saturday morning, I go to the window and wave to the kid cutting my grass in the 90-degree heat and 100% humidity (live in NOLA),” u/The_GrimTrigger replied. “Then I take a sip of my coffee, get back in bed, and chill.”
u/TheCrazyWolfy agreed: “I have no idea why some men enjoy it so much. Much better to just pay someone to come by and knock it out 10x faster than you could with their professional equipment.
According to Avon Cleaner, the average person spends 3 hours each week on laundry, and that time commitment is even larger for families, what with multiple outfit changes, diaper blowouts, and major spills accumulating on your clean clothes throughout the day. With it being a large time-sucking chore that requires several steps, it's not surprising that some people say it's not worth DIYing.
“Laundry. People don’t even think of it as an option,” u/LowWoodpecker9979 shared. “But it’s maybe the worst chore there is, and they’ll do it for like $1 a pound, picked up and delivered.”
u/just_type_randombs shared that outsourcing this task has been great for their relationship. “Folding my laundry. No matter how good my fiancé and I are at cleaning up, doing dishes, etc., we would leave clean clothes piled up for weeks,” they explained.
To read the full thread of advice — and to consider how you’d splurge if you could — check out the Reddit community’s post.