The easing of lockdown has brought with it countless developments within the world of construction and beyond. Our outlook on the world, our personal freedoms, and many elements of our behaviour have changed perhaps permanently. 

As we go on to explain in this article, some of our attitudes towards DIY construction projects have seemed to change over the course of the pandemic, with an increase in the amount of homeowners, especially in the younger generation, who are willing to undertake certain minor tasks across a range of vocations, whether it’s electrical, plumbing or carpentry work. 

A recent study conducted by the Plastic Sheets Shop showed that 40% of UK homeowners attempted their own DIY home improvement projects over lockdown, and that 35% are more confident in this area as a result. 

This enthusiasm and increased level of interest in being able to tackle DIY projects is very encouraging in terms of reaching our goal of supplying the construction industry with the next generation of tradespeople. If there’s a desire and enjoyment in being able to complete home improvements yourself, then why not make that your job?

DIY disasters

Some things, however, never change, and this includes our ultimate dependency on tradespeople to complete minor and major DIY work to a high and safe standard. One most notable development in the easing of lockdown has been the upsurge in the number of tradespeople who continue to be called out to people’s homes to complete a huge range of services. 

While these numbers remained consistent throughout previous lockdowns, with tradespeople in high demand and being able to safely carry out work despite restrictions, the recent surge is extremely promising, and shows that we need trained skilled tradespeople if we want serious work carried out to a high standard. 

The same study also revealed that, fortunately, the vast majority of people are still much more likely to call in a tradesperson to carry out the required work themselves. This is great news for those working in the trade – it demonstrates the consistent high demand and high rates that have been promised over the last year, and offers a bright light at the end of the tunnel for thousands of those working in the industry. 

 

Generating trust in your customers is crucial to forming a steady client base, and the figures revealed by this study suggest that the general public do have a very high level of confidence in tradespeople and the quality of work that they carry out. For example, 80.2% of those 45+, and 43.4% of those 18-45, would always bring in a tradesperson to complete work at home. 

 

Plumbing was the most in-demand trade for those who answered the survey, as it was seen as being more complex and requiring a high level of expertise. 70% of people surveyed answered that they would always call in a professional for any plumbing work. 34% answered that they would not know where to begin while performing the most minor of plumbing tasks, such as fixing leaky taps or unblocking drains, while 53% said that they would not be confident enough to attempt more major work themselves, especially complex tasks like installing plumbing fixtures such as toilets, sinks, or dishwashers.

The most revealing statistic, however, was that 40% of respondents actually regretted attempting the work themselves instead of hiring a professional! This is not a particularly good indicator of the quality of the work performed, and it goes without saying that hiring a professional – or becoming a qualified professional yourself – is only going to give you a better, and in the long term, more cost effective, outcome. 

Some trade work can be more forgiving to the DIY amateur – putting up a wonky shelf or changing a bulb isn’t going to result in disastrous consequences. But if there’s one thing the pandemic has shown, it’s that despite increased DIY efforts, people are still devoted to the services of the tradesperson, and that there truly is no adequate replacement for high-skilled, disciplined, professional work. 

Over the course of the pandemic, thousands of people have made the leap from their struggling professions to become skilled tradespeople, often after realising that they can save – and eventually make – money doing the work themselves. The opportunities for work are abundant, as is widely reported – wherever you look, there are indications that a career in the construction industry is well paid and in high demand. The trade industry has been and always will be a highly respected and essential industry with opportunities for everyone who wants to contribute their skills. 

Access Training is the place to develop and nurture these skills, and turn them into a viable and fulfilling career. It only takes one call, and we can take it from there.


Learn your trade. Get qualified. Make it happen.

How many jobs do you feel capable of doing around your home? Can you bleed a radiator? Do you know how to hang a door?

Well, if you're a young adult and your answer to these questions is yes then you are part of the minority! A third of young people (37%) said they could confidently change a shower head, and even fewer (31%) said they knew how to bleed a radiator. When the same questions were asked of over 55 year olds, 65% said they could change a shower head, and a staggering 79% knew how to bleed a radiator!

So the question is, does experience come with age, or are we living with a generation of young people who aren't confident in picking up their tools and giving DIY a go?

Part of the problem is that young people, more often than not, live in rented properties rather than their own homes. This means they rely heavily on their landlords to pay for and solve any problems that may occur in the home. More often than not, young people are left for days, if not weeks, with an unfixed problem in their home while waiting for their landlords to organise a solution. 

We want to inspire young people to give DIY tasks a go, but one thing to be wary of is that there are some jobs you can do with the help of a YouTube video... but there are some jobs that should not be attempted without proper training (that's where we come in).

Improving Your DIY Skills

Besides offering some excellent Electrical, Gas and Plumbing Courses, we also offer a range of construction courses such as:

These courses will teach you skills that will prove very useful if you want to try your hand at DIY tasks around your home. Better still, you could use your trade to help complete jobs for friends, family or even start your own business and make a profit on your new DIY skills!

If you want to enquire about one of our courses, don't hesitate to get in touch - you can call us on 0800 345 7492 or click the button below to fill in an enquiry form today!

Enquire Now >

A recent study by Which? has revealed that dodgy DIY is a primary cause for plumber call-outs across the UK.

In a survey that covered over 3800 Brits, the variety of home maintenance jobs tackled by the untrained, unequipped and unqualified ranged from unblocking a toilet to fitting an entire bathroom suite.

Somewhat predictably, these DIY plumbing jobs often end in a damp squib, leaving many homeowners in hot water.

As a result, this translates to a lot of extra work for UK plumbers.

 

diy disasters,diy plumbing courses

 

The Numbers

The results of the study highlighted some interesting trends, particularly when it comes to the common DIY tasks we attempt at home.

According to the Which? study, 53% of those that took part had attempted to replace a set of taps themselves.

Theoretically, assuming this survey is indicative of the nation as a whole, that means over half of Britain has dabbled in home plumbing in pursuit of saving a few quid.

Meanwhile, a further 41% had attempted to plumb in an appliance themselves and 35% have attempted to fix a leak.

 

DI-Why?

On the flip side of these figures, traders are commonly hired to help solve these issues created by over-enthusiastic DIYers.

In fact, over 60% of the traders surveyed had been called in to finish the aforementioned tasks, proving that there really is no substitute for first-hand knowledge and professional experience.

Worse still, these DIY disasters often lead to even worse problems occurring, from small leaks developing into larger issues to poor installation completely ruining kitchens.

 

DIY Plumbing Courses

One thing that’s abundantly clear from the study is that DIY plumbing jobs are a sure-fire way to get yourself in deep water – quite literally at times!

That being said, here at Access Training UK, we have a variety of entry-level plumbing courses available, designed to help you not only become a DIY VIP but also a veritable plumbing pro in no time at all.

Ideal for anyone looking to learn a new skill, perfect their DIY skills or change their career path entirely, these plumbing related courses have the ability to change your life as well as your home.

 

Essential Plumbing Course

Designed for absolute beginners, this course provides you with a firm understanding of the basics and sets you up for a potential new career in the trade.

 

Professional Plumbing Course

This all-level course provides a variety of useful qualifications, designed to equip you with the knowledge to confidently enter the world of professional plumbing.

 

Advanced Plumbing Course

Ideal for beginners or those looking to update their existing skills, this course allows you to learn the ins and outs of plumbing and gas fitting.

 

Bathroom Installation Course

Specifically designed for those that want to design and install bathroom suites to a professional standard, this course is open to all skill levels.

 

For more information on our plumbing courses, call now on 0800 345 7492 or hit the button below to get in touch online.

Contact Us

Handyman courses

Specialising in general home repairs and domestic maintenance, a handyman is very much a 'Jack of all trades'.

Covering everything from hanging picture frames to building flatpack furniture, a good handyman will be well-versed in the art of small jobs within the homestead – after all, why should Thor get to be the only hero with a hammer?

If you're a dab hand with a drill and a superstar with a spanner, you yourself could have the makings of a fine handyman (or handywoman).

Do you have the skills to pay the bills? Become a doctor of DIY and take your domestic talents to the next level with a handyman course from Access Training.

View DIY Carpentry Course >

 

Why take a handyman course?

Whether you want to set up your own handyman business or simply brush up on some essential domestic skills, a handyman course can be a great way to broaden your horizons and enhance your abilities.

Completing a course on the do's and don’ts of DIY will allow you to easily overcome common home maintenance issues, save money on household repairs and, best of all, provide you with the necessary knowledge and understanding to be independent within the home.

Outside of that, handyman skills can be a great way to supplement your income by carrying out odd jobs for others. Better still, a relevant training course could even provide you with a solid base on which to build your very own business.

 

Which handyman course is right for me?

Often grouped together under the banners of 'Property Maintenance' or 'Home Maintenance', handyman courses offer a whole host of useful domestic skills to learn.

From plumbing and bricklaying to painting and decorating, the list of handyman courses available across the UK is vast and wide-ranging. Finding the right one for you can depend largely on your specific needs and aspirations.

If you simply want to brush up on some household skills, a standard DIY course should fit the bill nicely; however, if you want something a little meatier to prepare you for a professional venture, you may want to consider a more comprehensive training programme.

 

Our DIY training courses

At Access Training, we offer two primary DIY courses, both of which are designed to help you become more independent in the home and give you the functional expertise to easily overcome typical household headaches.

The DIY courses currently available from Access Training are:

  • DIY Carpentry Course - From tool handling and basic cutting to hanging doors and fitting locks, our DIY Carpentry Course covers a wide variety of tasks in order to help you improve your practical carpentry skills around the home.

  • DIY Plastering Course - Providing you with all the basic know-how on the art of plastering, our DIY Plastering Course is ideal for anyone looking to take on a domestic plastering job, covering everything from mixing materials to rendering walls.

 

Further training courses

In addition to the DIY courses outlined above, we also provide a number of other 'Essential' courses that are ideal for anyone looking to get to grips with a skill they've never tried before.

These include:

These entry-level courses may be considered a step up from the DIY level, providing a superb foundation if you're looking to turn professional in the near future.

Get in touch now to speak with a course advisor >

CORONAVIRUS UPDATE: To help our learners stay safe during the COVID-19 pandemic, we are now offering live online training sessions. This means that you can participate in virtual classroom sessions from the comfort of your own home and rewatch each tutorial as many times as you wish. Of course, there's no substitute for hands-on experience, so the practical portion of your training course will still be delivered in person at our fully-equipped training centre. Contact Access Training now to find out more about our unique training packages.

 

The term “DIY” can mean many different things to many different people, depending on the words that follow it. From DIY fancy dress to DIY wedding decorations, the universal initialism of “Do It Yourself” can be applied to pretty much anything and everything… provided you don’t mind getting stuck in.

That being said, as a standalone term, DIY typically relates to handiwork around the house and can be a great way to save money on home improvement projects. If you don’t mind getting your hands dirty, DIY could be for you! With that in mind let’s roll up our sleeves and get to work, as we peel off the lid on the essentials of DIY.

 

how to do diy

 

How to DIY

When it comes to DIY in the home, the variety of tasks can be extremely vast and wide-ranging, including everything from re-wiring a plug to fixing a leaky tap. As such, a universal guide to all these tasks is non-existent; however, there are a few common themes that each job will share.

To help get you started on your DIY quest, here are a few simple rules to follow when taking on a task that’s outside of your comfort zone.

 

Do your homework

Before beginning any DIY task, it’s important to know what lies ahead.

While ploughing through your dining room wall with a sledgehammer may seem like a great way to expand your living room (and relieve some stress), the consequences could leave you picking up the pieces for a long while afterwards.

Doing your homework on a DIY task can help you adequately prepare, while also providing knowledge and knowhow on how to do the task properly. Luckily, Google can be your best friend in situations like this and step-by-step instructions can be found on a multitude of tasks in mere seconds.

Meanwhile, to make things completely idiot-proof (in theory), YouTube is also loaded with hundreds of thousands of instructional videos, designed to help you expand your mind, broaden your horizons and reach the DIY promised land in one piece.

 

Tools of the trade

They say a bad worker always blames his tools… so if you don’t have any tools, you’ll have no-one to blame if it all goes catastrophically pear-shaped!

Joking aside, a well-stocked toolbox can be a useful addition to any home. Items like a hammer, spanner, pliers and a set of screwdrivers can come in handy surprisingly frequently, whether it’s to tighten a loose screw or knock in a protruding nail.

You may also find that certain jobs require more than just your standard toolbox essentials. Electrical items and power tools like a circular saw or electric drill can also be useful to have, depending on the task at hand.

While other tasks may require more specialist items – such as a tile cutter or a floor sander – it may be worth considering how much use you are likely to get out of a job-specific item. If it’s a one-off job that won’t require revisiting, it could be more cost-effective to rent rather than buy your tools outright.

Specialist tools can be hired at a variety of outlets nationwide and could be a good way to keep your outgoings to a minimum.

 

Know your limits

DIY can be a fantastic way to save some money on a small job or menial repair task. However, if you’re dealing with something that’s totally outside of your knowledge and expertise, with a range of complexities attached, it may be worth reassessing the situation and, more importantly, your capabilities of completing the task successfully.

There’s no shame in admitting you’re out of your depth and knowing when you don’t know can be the difference between a job well done and job that needs redoing. What’s more, blindly sailing into the DIY abyss without a clear view of where you going can be extremely dangerous, particularly if you dealing with elements like gas and electricity.

 

Safety first

Following on from our last point, safety should always be top of the list when it comes to DIY. In fact, it should be the title of the list, written in bold and underlined… twice!

DIY in the home can involve a multitude of dangers, particularly if you’re new to home improvements. Even a simple task like hammering a nail can quite easily lead to a broken finger, so caution should be exercised at all times.

Sensible risk assessment is also hugely important. If you’re painting the ceiling while teetering out-stretched on a rickety ladder, all while your cat sleeps underneath on the glass coffee table, chances are you may want to reconsider your approach.

Whenever you’re attempting DIY, you should also bear in mind the clothes you wear too. This doesn’t just extend to overalls and old threads that you don’t mind getting ripped, dirty or ruined – it also extends to safety gear. Protective gloves can come in handy if you’re dealing with sharp objects that fragment – like glass, bricks and tiles – while safety goggles can quite literally save your vision if a rogue shard or shaving goes airborne.

 

When it comes to real DIY expertise, there’s no substitute for professional knowledge. If you want to expand your home improvement knowhow, why not consider a course with Access Training? Our vocational courses can help you achieve first-hand knowledge in a wide variety of skills – including electrical, gas and plumbing courses – making even the most daunting of DIY duties a doddle.

Get in touch today!

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