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I think I am a bit, but DIY...

(36 Posts)
GeorgianMumto5 Tue 30-Apr-13 13:39:58

...we had an extension built last year. All work finished on time and to good standard. Dh, who is good at this sort if thing, is doing all the decorating, tiling, plumbing in, etc. It will save us a fortune and he is a perfectionist, so it gets done to his exacting standards.

Therein lies my problem; dh's perfectionist streak is adding, IMO, months onto the project. Everything he does looks great, but it's been 8 months since the builders left, no one has moved into their new rooms, dh gave me and everyone an unrealistic end date for the project (4 months have passed since his predicted end date and we are nowhere near completion) and I am fed up with people asking, 'Is it all done yet?' The entire house looks a tip, half of the dc's stuff is stashed away and Ds has no space to call his own.

AIBU to be close to eye-rolling and despair at the lack of progress? Dh is doing it all in his spare time and working very hard...I just wish he'd bloody hurry up, not re-do things the builders had done already, not buy furniture and then decide he can't put it together because he doesn't like it and when I suggest solutions say, 'I don't know,' and leave the furniture parts propped up.

You would be within reason to suggest I help him, if it's bugging me so much. I have offered and been turned down.

I know it's a first-world problem, I know it'll get done eventually, but I am bit fed up at the moment.

GeorgianMumto5 Tue 30-Apr-13 13:41:21

...this sort of thing.

MortifiedAdams Tue 30-Apr-13 13:41:55

Get a man in. Does he have a weekend away or anythibg booked, in which you could call a plumber etc round?

Alternatively, draw up together a jobs list. Get him to.guve you finish dates.for each job. If its.not.finished by the date, agree to call in a tradesperson.

YABU - there is no point paying loads of money for an extension and then finishing it off in a hurried and scruffy way.

If the end product looks shit it's a total waste of money. Your DH sounds brilliant so just let him get on with it.

One day it will be done, one day smile

GeorgianMumto5 Tue 30-Apr-13 13:51:08

Very clever, yes. Talented, yes. Devoted, yes. Not sure about brilliant, but then I live with him.

Hurried would not be a good look, I admit, but 'one room usable' would be a great look. I'd just like to find the balance between Dh's quest for perfection and a house we can live in. (OK, we do live in it, but only in parts of it.)

I can't afford to get anyone in and dh never goes anywhere, but I do like the idea of a joint jobs list. Maybe we could just put dates by the ones we are working on right now?

Patchouli Tue 30-Apr-13 14:02:12

I'm the daughter of builder - you should've seen my childhood home!
I can imagine your place and yanbu.

GeorgianMumto5 Tue 30-Apr-13 14:08:15

grin Patchouli.

GuffSmuggler Tue 30-Apr-13 14:09:03

Can you get him to use his holiday to finish it off instead of going away, so he has 2 weeks or whatever solid to get it done and you vow to keep out the way with DS to return to a finished, perfect house....?

Callisto Tue 30-Apr-13 14:14:07

Can you not get on with it yourself? Put the flat pack stuff together yourself or send it back and get something ready built? Get a paintbrush out and get stuck in?

Dahlen Tue 30-Apr-13 14:21:26

What needs doing?

If the plastering/wiring/plumbing is done, there is no reason at all why you can't move stuff in already. Everything else is cosmetic and you can do it one room at a time just like people do when they redecorate their living room.

Dahlen Tue 30-Apr-13 14:21:57

I suspect that if you started 'helping' you would find your DH suddenly worked a lot faster. wink

WilsonFrickett Tue 30-Apr-13 14:23:04

Deal with the furniture yourself.
Pick one room and get it done, no faffing about doing a bit of tiling here and a bit of plastering there. Focus on one room only.

And give me back my husband grin

Tingalingle Tue 30-Apr-13 14:26:03

God, yes, nothing like me picking up the drill myself and having a bash to terrify DH into finding time for things after all...

(Disclaimer: I can use a drill. Most things stay up. And they look straight enough to keep me happy. Anything more than that is his problem.)

GetWhatYouNeed Tue 30-Apr-13 14:27:55

I understand your frustration but I also understand where your husband is coming from as I'm a DIY perfectionist (strange as in many other areas of my life I'm not). It takes me AGES to finish things eg months or years and sometimes this is because the feeling of having to do things to my standards is overwhelming, but the feeling of letting anyone else do it is even worse. I can't stand getting tradesmen in unless absolutely necessary eg electrics and plumbing as I know I can always do a better job than them although it takes me 20 times longer.

You say he has refused your offers of help, is this because he thinks you won't do the work to his standards? If so, would he agree to you doing some stuff where perfectionism isn't absolutely required eg painting the main parts of flat walls and not edges or woodwork? I'm thinking if that was me I could just about deal with other people doing those sorts of things.

I think you might have to grit your teeth and keep telling yourself it will be amazing when it's done!

GeorgianMumto5 Tue 30-Apr-13 14:50:47

Unfortunately, no. I have suggested I paint walls, take down shelves, etc. but he won't entertain the idea. I'm not even permitted to clean grout dust off newly tiled tiles. I like the idea of just doing it anyway. grin

The bedroom is ready to move in, once we've ordered carpet, except that he wants to use it for his workshop while he does the shower room, so we can't move in. Or order carpet.

Last year I took the DC on holiday so he could get on with it. There's only so many times I can do that and he felt he'd missed out.

I know I'm rejecting all your solutions, but they are good suggestions, so do keep them coming. I think it's just that it's been going on for so long that we've tried them already and, in the words of Edna Mode, 'yet here we are.'

I used to have a dream of buying a ramshackle cottage and doing it up. Not any more, I don't! Ha ha!

WilsonFrickett Tue 30-Apr-13 14:55:44

Nope. Order the carpet. Get into a room!

EuroShaggleton Tue 30-Apr-13 15:00:56

I feel your pain, OP. My parents moved into a series of "projects" during my childhood and did them up themselves. They climbed the property ladder nicely, but I did feel like I was living in a building site for much of my childhood!

quoteunquote Tue 30-Apr-13 15:55:43

Show us your snagging list. smile

Cheeks4970 Tue 30-Apr-13 17:22:10

Georgian, I feel your pain. I have a DP just like yours. It's great that he is a perfectionist and good at DIY but exhausting and stressful for me, a person who wants to 'just get things done'. I really empathise with you. We live in a 2 bed flat (with 2 kids) and it has been a 'work in progress' the whole time we have lived here (6+ years!).

We have pieces of wood stacked here and there (that I try to move and hide and put outside!), doors leaning against walls, paint chipped off cornicing etc. We have so many bits and pieces that I fear will never get done. I am always keen to paint and do as much as I can but I cannot do DIY and have even contemplated doing a course so that I can! I painted a room when I was six months pregnant because I couldn't stand it any longer. I am now planning to paint it all again soon because I can't bear looking at it.

I will just never understand that my DP doesn't want our home to be as good as we can make - we have limited funds but we both have the skills to get enough done to make it great, JUST FOR US.

Good luck x

BadgersRetreat Tue 30-Apr-13 17:39:35

we have a rule...



greenformica Tue 30-Apr-13 17:43:19

Go through the house and draw up a list. Employ a man for a week and get DH to take a week off work to finish.

Cheeks4970 Tue 30-Apr-13 18:17:47

For us it's never a matter of 'hiring a man for a week' - this is why my DP decided he would do everything because he finds it super stressful having idiots in to do the work that he can do and then you have to pay them for doing sub-standard work.

Honestly, we have had terrible experiences with people just incapable of doing a decent job and it's not because the people we have used were cheap either.

My DP works freelance so can never 'just take a week off' - if he gets offered a job, he has to take it and then he spends a lot of his other spare time finding work. It's never-ending!

quoteunquote Tue 30-Apr-13 18:23:36

Do a room by room snagging list, or you will never be able to tackle it efficiently.

if you do one, share it, and we can give you some input.

If you give us a list of tasks, I can give you idea how long it would take, and how much it would cost if you got someone into do them.

Alwayscheerful Tue 30-Apr-13 18:27:49

You are extremely lucky, keep making him cups of tea and snacks, tell him you love him and how clever he is and do order the carpet, get in the room and do all the cleaning, any fetching and carrying you can, any DIY shopping he needs but get one room finished for now then move on to the next one.

GeorgianMumto5 Tue 30-Apr-13 22:00:53

I'm good at the tea, snacks, home-cooked meals and homemade cakes thing. Now we are in my area of expertise. grin

I will see if I can come up with a snagging list. (This is a 'to do' list, yeah?)

Speaking of snagging, there's a snag with me ordering carpet because it has to fit around the wardrobe...which dh doesn't like. Also he insists upon using what would be our carpeted bedroom as his workshop for everything shower room related.

AIBU for wanting to kill him just a little bit?

Years ago, back in the days of me working f/t, I got a bonus and spent on professionals to fit our fireplace. Dh wanted to do it himself. I wanted a fireplace. I booked the fitters for when he was out. Fireplace still looks lovely, 11 years later. Sadly, those days are gone (p/t work and low wages) but thinking about it makes me realise that I could just get on with stuff. Today I've been decluttering, to make the mythical move more efficient and speedy.

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