The Federation of Master Builders

Avoid DIY if you want a peaceful Christmas

Published date: 22 December 2017

Half of us have arguments at Christmas time, with more than 10% having arguments that relate to DIY jobs, according to new research by the Federation of Master Builders (FMB).

The FMB asked 2,000 home owners if they had experienced arguments or tensions over the Christmas period and the main reasons for these arguments were as follows:

  • Cooking meals (38%);
  • Spending too much time with loved ones (36%);
  • Interacting with in-laws (34%);
  • Consuming too much alcohol (26%);
  • Deciding what to watch on TV (16%);
  • Playing games (11%);
  • DIY jobs, including assembling flat pack furniture (11%);
  • Sleeping arrangements (7%).

Sarah McMonagle, Director of External Affairs at the FMB, said: “Bank holidays are synonymous with DIY but our research suggests that perhaps Christmas is not the best time to undertake these sorts of projects. Half of Brits have had arguments with loved ones during the festive period and one in ten of these have had rows that relate to DIY. Christmas is a joyous time but it also puts families under immense emotional strain – extended families come together in a confined space and we tend to spend an unusually long amount of time with the same people. It’s therefore questionable as to whether we ought to add fuel to the fire by embarking upon DIY projects. Christmas and DIY both have a reputation for causing tensions in the household so our advice is that the DIY should wait until after the new year. That way, home owners can instead focus on having a very happy, and tension-free, Christmas.”

McMonagle concluded: “More generally, it’s important that DIY lovers know their limits and refrain from undertaking tasks that are better performed by a professional builder. This advice applies equally throughout the year and not just at Christmas. If home owners want to hire a builder but don’t have a reliable recommendation from a family member or friend, they should use the FMB’s ‘Find a Builder’ service. All new Master Builders are vetted and independently inspected upon joining so consumers can be assured that they will be working with a professional builder.”


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