New homeowners know that building a toolbox from scratch or upgrading to high-end tools isn’t as exciting as buying furniture or home decor items. (We can’t sugarcoat it!) Although having a fully stocked toolbox will make the move, the unpacking process, and the life of an owner that much more enjoyable and efficient.
However, you also don’t have to spend an arm and a leg on all the latest and greatest tools to have a handy kit. Below, we’ve spoken to a handful of home improvement and real estate experts to get their thoughts on what you’ll need to jump into life as a fully self-employed homeowner and celebrate the process.
1.A good set of drills and drill bits
Let’s start with the basics: a drill and a screwdriver are essential. Or it is according to David Gu, CEO and design expert at Inyouths LED Mirrors. “Buy a drill bit set that includes a good selection of Phillips, slotted and square drive bits in a variety of sizes, so you’ll be ready for any repair job that comes your way,” says- he. Follow his lead with the BLACK+DECKER 8V MAX Cordless Drill that comes with over forty parts, including a wide variety of bits and attachments.
Get the BLACK+DECKER 8V MAX Cordless Drill from Amazon for $33.25
2. Heavy and light hammers
Two hammers should be enough to get you started with your toolbox—take a heavyweight and a lightweight. “Generally, the size of the hammer should match the size of the nail. The heavier the hammer, the bigger the nail,” Gu says. “Choose a basic claw hammer for outdoor projects and large construction projects. A pin hammer is a small hammer used to drive small fasteners like panel pins and thumbtacks.”
Get the IRWIN Claw Hammer from Amazon for $15.69
Get the Stanley Pin Hammer from Amazon for $31.55
3. An adjustable wrench
“You probably don’t need a full set of wrenches; instead, get one or two adjustable wrenches, the jaws of which can be adjusted to fit a variety of nuts and bolts” , explains Gu. “Some self-adjusting wrenches are self-ratcheting, which means they don’t have to be removed from the bolt to tighten it.”
Get the HORUSDY Wrench Set from Amazon for $21.99
4. Invest in a good set of screwdrivers
According to Shaun Martin, CEO of Denver Real Estate Solutions, a good screwdriver set is an absolute must. “You’ll need flathead and Phillips screwdrivers of varying sizes to do most home improvement jobs,” he explains. The Milwaukee Cushion Grip Screwdriver Kit comes with six different screwdrivers in several different sizes and will be more than enough to take care of small household projects.
Get the Milwaukee Cushion Grip Screwdriver Kit from Amazon for $39.9
5. This Basic Tape Measure
“A tape measure is a necessity for any home improvement project, big or small,” says Martin. “Measure twice and cut once is the golden rule of DIY!” You don’t need to spend a ton on a high end tape measure. Trying a basic product like this from AmazonBasics will do just as well as a more expensive option.
Get the AmazonBasics 16ft Tape Measure from Amazon for $6.82
“A level is an important tool to ensure your projects run smoothly and professionally,” Martin points out. Most levels shouldn’t cost you more than $10 (like this one from Urasisto), but are worth more than gold when you start hanging your gallery wall or statement art.
Get the Urasisto Torpedo Tier from Amazon for $6.99
According to Martin, a saw is a surprisingly useful power tool that’s good for everything from cutting through wood to cutting through drywall. This option from Black + Decker is affordable compared to higher-end options, but is considered one of the best options for basic home improvement jobs.
Get the BLACK+DECKER Jigsaw from Amazon for $26.97
8. A good pair of Channellock pliers
“You’ll need Channellock pliers to tighten or remove garden hoses and washer fill hoses,” says Crystal Wright, director of communications at Sears Home Services. “You can also use water pump pliers for many other uses such as opening tight lids or removing spring clips on pipes.” The heat-treated handle and undercut tongue are designed to be comfortable in the hand and should last for decades with moderate use.
Get the Channellock 430 Tongue and Groove Pliers from Amazon for $18.95
9. A variety of batteries to keep on hand
Sure, there’s a ton of tech that’s converted to USB battery charging, but you’ll still want to keep batteries handy when moving into a new home. “You’ll need batteries of different sizes for fire alarms, carbon monoxide monitors, and many other items like remote control toys you buy at Christmas that don’t include batteries,” Wright points out.
Get the ACDelco Battery from Amazon for $27.82
This is a complete household tool kit that contains all the basic tools any new homeowner would need and could be a decent alternative for those who don’t want to build their toolbox from scratch. It includes a hammer, screwdriver, pliers and more. “I love this kit—it includes a range of tools that would be in a basic tool kit and can handle most projects,” says Martin. “You will find spanners and sockets in multiple sizes, a level, a mallet, tape measure, pliers, etc. It contained everything you would need to decorate, repair, adjust, modify and create new things. “
Get the Eastvolt 218-Piece Household Tool Kit from Amazon for $79.21
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Prices were accurate at the time this article was published, but may change over time.