Don't Let Yourself Become a (DIY) Victim!

Amanda Lynch Elliott

by Amanda Lynch Elliott

Amanda Lynch Elliott is a native of Pensacola and an attorney with My Pink Lawyer®. Amanda and her husband are parents of two young daughters. Amanda enjoys running, yoga and paddle boarding, and has a twin sister.

As the old adage goes, you get what you pay for.


Mark and I couldn't help but laugh as we stared out from behind our dust covered glasses, masks, hats, all orifices covered, knee-deep in broken tile.


What have we done?


We decided to knock out the last home renovation project on our list before our baby girl arrives next month and redo the tiny bathroom off of our master bedroom.


We wanted to do some of the work ourselves but, from experience, decided to seek out help with the parts of the job outside of our wheelhouse. In doing so, we broke the cardinal rule.


We went with the lowest bidder. We hired a handyman to do the things we could not do– demo, sheetrock, etc. – instead of hiring the mid-ranged professional who specialized in bathroom remodels.


We know better. I really know better. It's only been about six years since my last fiasco with home renovations when I attempted to tackle a DIY project that I was severely under prepared to handle.


If you ever need a reminder that you are not superwoman, demolish a bathroom in a home built in the 1950’s by yourself and then try to piece it back together.


Oh yeah – also make sure it is a month before you are moving and renters will be moving in to said home to ensure the adequate panic ensues.


My dreams are still haunted by plaster walls… But I digress.


Long story short, the person we hired for this project did about half the job he was hired for (at a snail’s pace) before he stopped showing up completely. We were left picking up the pieces, literally. Chalk it up to a lesson learned… again.


Simply put, some things are just better left to the professionals.


Like some of you reading this who have attempted to Do-It-Yourself with online so-called “estate planning forms.”


The estate planning forms you find online may be perfectly fine but they are only one tool in your estate planning arsenal. In the wrong hands and without the right legal knowledge and know-how backing them up, they can lead to disasterous and costly results.


Just as a sledge hammer in my hand is not pretty, a form, cookie-cutter Will is not pretty for most families either.


The good news is that the salmon colored tile has been replaced and our bathroom is now a much more functional space. The sweat equity in our home has substantially increased and, once the sting wears off, we have a story that we will undoubtedly laugh about for years.


The dust will settle and life goes on. In the grand scheme of things, it could have been A LOT worse.


However, our experience underscores the importance of selecting the right person for the job. Do your research. Read reviews. Find someone who specializes in a specific area to fit your particular needs.


Do not trust just anyone to handle your important estate planning needs. Unlike salmon colored tile, the implications can be permanent, expensive and heartbreaking.


Before  After

Before & After                


Amanda “Tooltime” Lynch Elliott


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