Master renovator and HGTV star Jasmine Roth is coming to the rescue tonight with the series premiere of her new show, Help! I Wrecked My House, helping overzealous homeowners finish up complex DIY projects to turn their home into beautiful, functional spaces. With Roth and her team working to redeem failed home improvement plans, each episode follows the California native as she works to reset DIY designs with her signature style and refreshing practicality tailored for each client.
With millions of homeowners currently turning to do-it-yourself projects amid a pandemic as they follow stay-at-home orders, Roth tells PopCulture.com exclusively that there are ways some DIYs can turn out much worse than getting professionals to come in and help, advising on two aspects you should never touch.
"My recommendation is plumbing and electrical. Don't touch it — just don't touch it," Roth tells us in our series, PopCulture @ Home. "What happens is there's a reason that people are electricians as a career. There's a reason that they're professional plumbers. Even if you as a homeowner tinker here and there, you're never going to have the know-how to properly and safely do electrical or the plumbing in your own home."
While she encourages those, who do have that knowledge to "go for it," in her own professional opinion, she believes those are the two things she sees over and over that can spark several problems for families. "Hire a professional, make sure they're licensed, and then pull permits. If you don't pull permits, you're really just shooting yourself in the foot," she stressed. "It's a great way to cut a corner and maybe save a little bit of money when you're doing your renovation, but it's not a great way because in the future at some point you're going to have to do something where the city or an inspector is going to come into your house and you have to bring everything up to code at that point. Which you didn't pull a permit back then the codes might've changed and you might have to rip out everything you've done."
Roth goes on to share with her series helping families fall back in love with their home again after disastrous home renovations, she "felt so bad" for many of them. "I really did. It was tough. To make some of these phone calls, I had to make and tell them more bad news. They knew they were in trouble or they wouldn't have called me — then to have to call them and go through that with them. It was heartbreaking. Luckily, there's a happy ending. Spoiler alert!" she said. "There's a happy ending. I know for so many families that don't necessarily have the benefit of me coming in and basically fixing their house, there's not a happy ending. Save your money, do it right the first time, hire a professional electrician, professional plumber."
Stressing how renovating your home is all about a "system of checks and balances" to ensure your family's safety, Roth says the city inspectors have your best interest at heart. "They just want your house to be safe. They want you to be able to live in a home and feel comfortable that the renovation you did and the person you hired did it right. It makes a lot of sense. The codes are there for the same exact reason. Pulling permits is super important."
The 35-year-old adds how it's essential a lot of homeowners understand the difference between expectation and reality, especially for those who watch HGTV or YouTube videos assuming they "can do it" all. "What you don't realize is that every single municipality, whether it's a city or a county, they have different codes. What might be to code in whoever did that YouTube video or online video, it might not be for where you live," Roth said. "Here in Southern California, I don't really have to worry about pipes freezing, but if you did plumbing the same way in Vermont that you did here — you're in trouble. It's taking those kinds of things into consideration that I think a lot of just first time DIYers would never think of."
Always happy to help fans and viewers, Roth most humbly admits she doesn't want to "scare people away from working on their houses," and encourages many to start at baby step levels starting with paint, which can make "such a difference" in one's home. "Paint your ceiling — you know what I mean? It can really, really change things," she said. "That's something that pretty much everybody can do, or even if you're painting the outside of your house as well."
Sharing how carpentry is another basic for homeowners looking to zhuzh up their spaces, Roth admits it is an investment like no other, especially when it comes to the safety aspect. "It's important. Don't cut your fingers off [but] it's less scary and a little bit more manageable, I think, to learn carpentry and start with small projects and just work into some bigger projects."
As seen in the premiere episode, "I Don't Want to Be Project Manager Anymore," Roth shares how the homeowners most impressively built their kitchen. "They did a really good job. There are projects that you can do if you just take your time and measure," she encouraged. "You do have to purchase some tools, though. If you're just going to build one kitchen probably not worth it to buy all the tools that you need. If you're going to build a couple of kitchens, maybe it's worth it. Or you can borrow tools."
With so many fans looking to HGTV as an educator in decor and design for our own homes, Roth also shares a general "rule of thumb" to instantly beautify your home in the simplest, most refreshing way. "I don't know if this is really like a DIY tip or trick, but you'll notice behind me, I have this whole wall of photos," she said in our series, pointing to the background behind her. "Anywhere you're sitting in your house, look around — I call them family photos. If you don't see a photo that's framed that makes you happy, then you're doing something wrong in that room."
Sharing how she must also always include one specific item in every room, watch our complete interview above for more on Roth's sweet design and decor ideas. Help! I Wrecked My House airs Saturdays at 8 p.m. ET on HGTV. For more on Jasmine, HGTV and all your favorite reality stars and shows, keep it locked to PopCulture.com!