The question of whether you should attempt a project in a DIY way or hire a professional is an age-old conundrum; there are always going to be pros and cons for each side. When it comes to building a retaining wall, some people will definitely know which side they come down on.
Building a retaining wall is a big project, and an important one to get right. Essentially, a retaining wall is going to help keep soil in place and is often used to create flat outside areas in an otherwise sloping yard, for example. It can even be used for practical rather than aesthetic uses, allowing rainwater to run off rather than sink into the ground.
Read on for the pros and cons of installing a retaining wall yourself or hiring a professional so you can make up your own mind about what’s best for you.
The Advantages and Disadvantages of Professional Retaining Wall Installation
There are, of course, a variety of different advantages to having a professional install your retaining wall. To begin with, you’ll be hiring experienced professionals (as long as you do your homework and make sure you hire good hardscape contractors) who won’t just offer you a great quality finish to the work, but should – because this is what they do all the time – be able to complete the task much more quickly than you could have done yourself. Professionals will also have better access to the most high-quality materials, something that you wouldn’t be able to do – how would you know where to look or what to buy to do the job well? On top of this, professionals will understand how soil works. This may not seem that important, but imagine choosing the wrong spot to install your retaining wall because you don’t have this knowledge; it would cost you a lot of time, effort, and money.
The biggest disadvantage of hiring a retaining wall installer has to be the cost. Most of the money you’ll be paying will go towards labor rather than materials, and this can be very expensive – perhaps too expensive for your budget. Plus, just because you are paying a professional to build your retaining wall that doesn’t mean it will get done any more quickly than if you were to do it yourself, especially if you choose to have them create a complex design.
The Advantages and Disadvantages of Home DIY Retaining Wall Installation
There are all kinds of reasons why you might choose to install your new retaining wall by yourself rather than paying for a professional to do it for you. For one thing, the cost is often going to be lower since, although you might have to pay more for materials, you won’t have to pay anything for labor which tends to be the biggest part of the cost associated with a professional. Plus, when you’re doing everything all by yourself, you are in complete control and you can choose exactly the design elements that you want to include. Finally, if you enjoy DIY and love the satisfaction of looking at something you have made from scratch, you might be willing to create your retaining wall – you’ll certainly learn a lot while you do it.
The disadvantages start with the fact that this is a hard job. It’s not something that can be quickly done in a weekend; it’s going to take a lot of thinking and planning before you can even begin to dig, let alone anything else. You also won’t know which materials are going to be best to use, and that could result in having to start again or having an inferior project.