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10 Tools Every Homeowner Should Own
Saturday, 30 July 2016, 11:10:00 AM

Some of us will tackle any project that comes our way, while others have neither the time nor the inclination to do home improvement. Here is a list of 10 basic tools that are perfect for your first-time homebuyer toolbox, even if you never plan to use them. Always remember to read and follow the manufacturer’s instructions and use proper safety equipment.

Home Improvement Book

Black & Decker has an entire series dedicated to home repair and improvement, but for a quick reference guide choose their “Black & Decker The Book of Home How-To: The Complete Photo Guide to Home Repair & Improvement.” Remember to consult your local code manuals.

Ladder

When choosing the size and type of ladder, consider the height of your interior ceilings and whether you plan to use it outside for cleaning the gutters.

toolsLightweight Drill with Bit Set

Corded or cordless, a powerful lightweight drill is worth more than its weight in gold. Make sure the bit set has a variety of types and sizes, and many will usually come with a case and magnetic bit holder.

Extension Cord

Especially useful for that drill you just bought, but also good for Christmas lights, the dehumidifier in the basement, or other outdoor power tools. Be sure to get something high quality, indoor/outdoor, and with multiple plugs should you ever need them.

Screwdriver Set, or Similar

For those times when the drill is overkill, a screwdriver set never goes out of style. Spend a little more and buy a single screwdriver that ratchets and has multiple heads built into the handle – these take up very little space and are good for so many applications!

Adjustable Wrench / Crescent Wrench

Unless you are willing to spend a little more, this will not get you through any major plumbing projects, but it will shut off the water in an emergency or install a low-flow shower head.

Hammer

This is probably the most obvious of the group, but there are actually many different types of hammers for different applications. Start with a basic but solid model with a little bit of heft.

Miscellaneous Fastener Kit

There are many versions of this, but they are usually relatively cheap plastic boxes with several types of nails, screws, nuts, and bolts. When you misplace the screw for your cabinet knob, need to hang a picture in a pinch, or want to secure the lip of trim on the stairs, you’ll be ready.

Tape Measure

From measuring for furniture to hanging shelving and trim, a tape measure is indispensable. Consider buying more than one – something longer and sturdier for the toolbox, and something shorter, more compact, and possibly magnetic to hang on the fridge or keep in your purse or car.

Smartphone

True, you won’t want to keep this in your toolbox, but don’t forget what a helpful home improvement tool it can be. Many smartphones have built-in levels and flashlights, offer conversion apps, can provide eBooks on any home improvement topic, and have the internet to look up code restrictions, find instructions or manuals, or watch helpful YouTube instructional videos. And, in a pinch, you can use it to call a professional for help!

The final tools any homeowner needs to have in his or her toolbox are humor and humility. Home improvement is hard, especially at first. You will get better and hopefully have some fun along the way. Be proud of your accomplishments, no matter how small. And if you find yourself at the end of your rope, don’t be afraid to call in a professional.


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