When you purchase a new home, it’s important to budget for maintenance costs along with your mortgage. You’re prepared financially, but do you have the tools necessary to tackle do-it-yourself projects around the house? You’ll likely hire a contractor for major plumbing issues or an entire roof replacement, but for simple tasks, you just need the right tools for the job. Here is a list of basic tools for homeowners to have on hand.

Tools for Homeowners to Handle Home Improvement Projects


For your toolbox at home, you’ll do well with two hammers, a heavier weight one for driving nails and a lightweight one for pins or furniture tacks. A claw hammer is useful for removing nails. Choose a hammer with a comfortable grip that you can easily maneuver.

Every Homeowner Should Have a Cordless Drill

A drill will come in handy for many projects around the house. A cordless version with a battery pack means you won’t have to deal with extension cords. Shop for a drill that includes an assortment of drill bits. You can even find screwdriver tips to use your drill for removing or installing Phillips head or flat head screws.

Tape Measure

Add a sturdy tape measure to your home’s tool kit. Look for one with a locking option so you are able to measure distances on your own. A tape measure will be useful for determining if the new couch will fit in the living room or what size refrigerator your kitchen can accommodate.

Screwdrivers are Essential Tools for Homeowners

A set of screwdrivers is useful throughout the home. Change out your doorknobs and locks to improve home security, install new hardware on your kitchen cabinets, and tighten stair railings with the appropriate screwdriver. Buy an assortment or purchase a handle that comes with changeable tips.


If you’re building a backyard deck or hanging picture frames, a level helps make certain you’ve done it correctly. Get a basic bubble level or a more modern laser level to use for projects around the house.

Allen Wrenches or Hex Keys

You’ll need a set of hex keys for assembling some furniture and children’s toys. Bolts with hexagonal or star-shaped sockets were designed because they are less like to be stripped when tightening. Hex bolts are common in motorcycle and bicycle assembly. Some appliances and power tools require hex keys to tighten components.

Essential Tools for Homeowners Should Include Safety Items

When tackling projects around the house, work safely. Sturdy leather gloves protect your hands while weeding. Plastic gloves are great for refinishing furniture, cleaning, or painting. Safety goggles protect your eyes when drilling, using a saw, or even cleaning the gutters. Ear protection is helpful when weed-whacking or using the leaf blower. Dust masks come in handy when using a saw or tackling a minor mold problem.

Inspector Ed provides home inspection services in the New York City area. Contact us to schedule an appointment.