Home Improvement: A Battle of the Sexes?

By | March 27, 2009

A fierce debate recently broke out on a DIY website regarding who was better at home improvement: Men or Women. The editor of a DIY website named ‘Lets Do DIY,’ John Burry, was quick to comment on the furore and said: “We thought asking if men or women were better at DIY would provide [the website] with a little light relief, but both sexes appear to have very strong views on the subject.” He added: “The poll clearly suggests that today many more women are undertaking home improvement projects and consequently DIY is no longer the predominantly male activity it once was.”

According to the UK national statistics website: “When it comes to DIY, nearly half of women.” in their studies: “say that they do not do DIY repair work, compared with [only] 16 per cent of men.” Therefore, the majority of men believe that they carry out some home improvement work, whilst only half of all women do activities such as sort out the new kitchen design or loft conversion. However, when asked about specific forms of DIY work such as decorating and gardening, roles are much more balanced, with both men and women claiming to do an equal share.

In 2006 a study which was funded by The Halifax showed that 5.3 million women in the UK believe they are ‘the best person in the household’ to carry out DIY home improvements and the Daily Mail ran a story on these findings.

Only one in ten men agreed that their female partner did a better job with the DIY than themselves. Whilst four percent of men admitted that their girlfriends or wives did most of the DIY and when asked if their wives had more skill than them with screwdrivers and power tools seven percent of the men in the report agreed that in fact their wife did. The newspaper reported that the studies revealed a lot about men, saying: “men are not ready to accept the new balance of DIY power and are grudging about the abilities of their partners.”