Whether you’re moving into a fixer-upper or brand-new house, you’ll almost certainly want to decorate it and do repairs from time to time. Essential tools for homeowners will help with everything from landscaping to hanging pictures on the walls. Here are the best tools for first-time homeowners to buy.
Important Tools for First-Time Homeowners
Use this checklist to guide you on your trip to the hardware store.
A shovel is one of the most essential tools for homeowners. You never know when you’ll need to build a fence, uproot a dead tree or plant a garden.
2. Garden Hose
This is useful for more than just watering plants — you can also use it to wash your car or fill your pets’ outdoor bowls. Plus, kids love to play in the water on a hot day!
3. Lawn Mower
If your house has a yard, you’ll have to mow sooner or later. Paying someone else to do routine lawn care can quickly add up — basic landscaping costs an average of $4 to $12 per foot. Buy your own mower to save money in the long run.
This is one of the most important tools for first-time homeowners to have in their collection. You’ll use it for everything from opening paint cans to removing the batteries from your TV remote. Buy a flathead and Phillips screwdriver to tackle different projects.
5. Portable Air Compressor
Specific power tools — like nail guns, air drills and some sanders — operate using compressed air. Pick an air compressor based on the maximum operating pressure your devices require. For example, if your nail gun has a PSI of 90, you’ll need an air compressor with a PSI rating of 90 or more.
Pliers can get the job done if you need to remove a stubborn nail or bend a piece of wire. This tool comes in several styles. Some of the most common ones include needlenose and slip joint pliers.
7. Step Ladder
Even if your house has low ceilings, odds are only some people are tall enough to install hanging planters or light fixtures eight feet up. A step ladder stabilizes you while providing access to those hard-to-reach places.
8. Extension Ladder
While step ladders are mainly helpful for indoor jobs, an extension ladder is more of an outdoor tool. It comes in handy when replacing shingles or cleaning out the gutters. An extension ladder features a base and one or two upper sections that extend to make the ladder longer. To support it, you’ll need to put it against a solid surface, such as a wall or the edge of the roof.
9. Cordless Drill
A power drill is one of the handiest tools for first-time homeowners. It makes short work of screwing together your fresh-from-the-box furniture. It’s also handy for making pilot holes — which guide the placement of a nail or screw — as well as removing screws with ease.
10. Utility Knife
Also called a box cutter, drywall knife or pen knife, this tool features a thin, retractable blade for safe storage in your pocket or tool chest. Its applications are almost endless. Use it to open packages, trim drywall or cut through fiberglass insulation.
11. Claw Hammer
A claw hammer’s versatility makes it one of the most essential tools for new homeowners. It’s useful for hanging up picture frames, hammering down loose nails in the floor, reinforcing furniture and even closing paint cans. Plus, it’s vital for many fun home projects that require a little DIY.
12. Stud Finder
Wall studs are the boards that give your house its internal structure, also called the frame. If you want to hang a heavy object on the wall, you’ll need to attach it to a stud so you don’t tear the drywall. A stud finder helps you locate these boards. And, of course, dads everywhere love to point the stud finder at themselves and pretend it’s beeping — it’s practically a requirement!
13. Hex Keys
These essential tools for homeowners aren’t precisely keys. Rather, they’re tiny, metal hexagonal prisms that fit into screws with a hexagonal hole. They’re also called Allen wrenches or hex wrenches. Repairing bikes, cars, furniture and electronics may require using a hex key. You’ll also need one to switch out the bits on certain drills.
14. Tool Bag
While it’s little more than an oversized purse, calling it a tool bag does make it sound rather important. And it is — a good tool bag will have compartments to organize your screwdrivers, pliers, wrenches and more, and be solid enough not to tear under pressure.
You may need to sand the walls or furniture at some point. If you’re just working in a small area, you can use a manual, disposable sanding block. Or, purchase an electric orbital sander or belt sander for larger jobs that require more even sanding.
Essential Tools for Homeowners
Moving into your first home is exciting. By buying a few necessary tools, you can ensure you have the right stuff to tackle any repairs, decorating ideas or projects that comes your way.
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