Home improvement: it doesn’t have to be a scary concept, as long as you have the right tools. For this reason, it’s a good idea to be properly equipped for the multitude of occasions when these tools are needed. Whether you have plans to do some DIY home upgrades or not, having the right tools on hand will provide convenience while eliminating frustration.
Trust us, these 15 tools are bound to have their moment in making your life as a homeowner easier. Thus, if you’ve been looking for a way to stock up your tool chest without spending thousands, invest in these top 15 must-have tools:
Tool #1. Drill
A cordless drill is one of the most multi-functional tools on the market today. Powered by an attached battery pack, these drills work with a variety of different bits. For example, drills are necessary for installing kitchen cabinets and shelving unit.
For best results, buy a good-quality drill and a pack of drill bits with Phillips-head, slotted, and square-drive bits in an assortment of sizes. In this case, you’ll be ready for any job that might come your way.
Average price: $20 – $100
Simple Security Upgrade:
The plate that secures your front door lock is usually assembled with the standard ½ inch long wall screw. Burglars can easily breach the entry with a hard kick.
Replace the standard screws with a four-inch version to reduce their ability to gain access to your home.
Tool #2. Adjustable Crescent Wrench
A crescent wrench is an essential tool for removing nuts and bolts of different sizes. Specifically, crescent wrenches are particularly useful for assembling furniture. Instead of buying an entire case of wrenches, invest in a single wrench or two with adjustable heads.
Look for self-ratcheting wrenches which eliminate the need to repeatedly remove the wrench from the bolt to tighten it.
Average price: $6 – $20
Tool #3. Hammers
In general, hammers are the quintessential “do it all” tool. First, they’re ideal for driving and removing nails. Second, hammers act as a pry bar in a pinch. Therefore, hammers should be the foundation of your toolbox. For best results, purchase two hammers:
The heavyweight hammer: Ideal for outdoor construction projects, demolition and anywhere with big nails.
The lightweight hammer: What you’ll reach for when it comes time to pound picture nails and tacks.
Average price: $2 – $20
Tool #4. Extension Cord
An extension cord is essential to have around the house. Although, you may be wondering how to choose the right extension cord. For one thing, you’ll use them for outdoor parties. Similarly, extension cords are handy when you need a bit of extra light in a corner. Moreover, when you don’t have an outlet right where you need it, extension cords are necessary. Look for a heavy-duty cord with a length of at least 25 feet.
Average price: $7 – $25
Tool #5. Hacksaw
A hacksaw is one cutting tool that serves a variety of purposes. Perfect for major cutting projects including metal and plastic pipes, tubing, conduit, brackets, and bolts. Under those circumstances, a hacksaw will get you out of a sticky situation or two.
Average price: $4 – $17
Tool #6. Level
When you’re trying your luck at a home improvement, you’ll want to take the necessary steps to ensure you execute your project successfully. The first thing to remember is to measuring twice when marking hardware points. Another point often overlooked is utilizing a level of pro-quality results. Having a level on hand will take the frustration out of hanging pictures, or installing curtain rods and shelving. For this reason, trust a level, not your eyes when you are installing/hanging these items.
Average price: $4 – $27
Tool #7. Tape Measure
Another key point to making a professional home improvement is measuring. A tape measure will come in handy for building backyard birdhouses and moderate home renovations. At the same time, you’ll use it to figure out whether that new couch will fit through the doorway, or if you’re purchasing the right size rug. To buy the tape measure that’s best-suited for your household, get one that’s at least 25’ long.
Average price: $7 – $12
Tool #8. Utility Knife
Utility knives are small, handheld knives with retractable blades. Safe and sharp, these are good for breaking down your recycling, scoring wood, and getting rid of old caulk around the bathroom. However, keep these far from a child’s reach. It has been noted that utility knives are the leading offender for serious lacerations and incidents occur most often with children.
As industry leading professionals, we keep a utility knife on hand to assist with opening boxes during the moving process. Our go-to moving hack is to make our own box handles with a utility knife for easier loading and unloading. Check out our blog of moving hacks here.
Average price: $7 – $15
Tool #9. Step Stool or Step Ladder
Sturdy enough to make changing light bulbs easy, a good step stool is indispensable for household chores and projects. In reality, you’ll use it at least once a month to change your air filter and it comes in handy for dusting in high places like the ceiling fan.
Average price: $25 – $45
- Do switch to a step ladder, if you need to stand on the top step of a stool.
- Do inspect the feet to ensure they are level with the ground.
- Don’t reach or stand on tip toes, re-position the ladder/stool instead.
- Don’t use a chair, desk or table.
- Don’t store ladder where children have access.
- Don’t wear open-toe shoes, sandals or heels when climbing a stool or ladder.
- Don’t skip any steps when ascending or descending.
Safety Tip: “If you don’t have the proper stool/ladder, the job can wait.” — Mover Bob
Tool #10. Screwdrivers
Screwdrivers are essential handheld tools that are ideal for small jobs that don’t require the force of a drill.
For this reason, you’ll reach for them when it’s time to switch out a light bulb or tighten a knob. Of course, if you’ve got kids, you’ll be using a mini Phillips head to open the battery casing for many electronic toys. Pick up a variety pack to ensure you always have the right screwdriver head – Phillips, slotted, and Pozidriv, are all good to have on hand.
Average price: $5 – $20 (6 pc. set)
Tool #11. Putty Knife
Keep a putty knife in your toolbox to use when a somewhat dull blade would be safer than using your utility knife. For instance, it’s ideal for applying wall texture, scraping wallpaper, and removing popcorn ceiling. For this reason, purchase one with a sturdy handle for longevity and durability.
Average price: $3 – $8
Paint Your Baseboards While Protecting Your Carpet
- Ditch the painters tape and opt for some sturdy, stickier packaging tape.
- Unroll a few feet along the line where the carpet meets the bottom of the baseboard.
- Ensure there around a half inch overlapping onto the baseboard.
- Use your putty knife to tuck that half inch of tape under the baseboard.
- Freshen up those baseboards with a new coat and don’t sweat drips on your carpet.
Tool #12. Plunger
In addition to keeping your toilet flushing freely, a plunger also be helpful for unclogging sinks and drains. – However, it is important to realize that there needs to be definite separation. Be sure to keep your toilet plunger and your sink plungers separate and clearly labeled.
Average price: $5 – $18
Tool #13. Pliers
In general, pliers are gripping tools that have multiple uses. Get a few pairs of channel-lock pliers to use on your sink’s pipes and valves and a few sets of small, needle-nose pliers for getting into small spaces and gripping small surfaces.
Likewise, you can use electrician’s pliers which come to a very fine point and can cut wires.
Average price: $10 – $12 ( 3 pc. set)
Tool #14. Allen Keys
Allen, or Hex, keys are what you’ll commonly find in the packages of furniture that have not yet assembled. Of course, they’re useful for much more than that, though: keep them on hand for hanging towel bars or working on your bicycle. For this reason, sets of Allen keys are convenient. Of course, you can purchase a few loose ones and keep them in your home improvement toolbox.
Average price: $8 – 15
Tool #15. Protective Wear
Finally, gloves and goggles are essential safety home improvement safety gear. By all means, throw these into your tool box for good measure. For best results, collect a pair of rubber gloves for use during chemical-dense or dirty jobs. In like manner, buy leather gloves for gardening and work that requires contact with sharp objects. Correspondingly, you’ll want ear and eye protection to keep your senses in tact.
A Better Home Improvement Kit Starts Here
Home improvement doesn’t have to feel overwhelming or intimidating. Flex your handyman skills with this simple home improvement kit: 15 inexpensive tools that will take care of most of your household “fix it” needs.