Tools Every New Homeowner Should Own

You’ve just bought your first home… congratulations! It’s exciting and a little mind boggling at the same time. After all the furniture is placed and the dishes are tucked away, there may be a few things around the house which need minor improvements. Got tools? If not, here’s a list of tools every new homeowner should own.

My first purchase was an older home. Needless to say, there was always something which needed to be updated. The floors were not level, the moulding did not match, and a few of the doors and windows needed to be replaced. I had a few basic tools, but needed to buy more.


Tools every new homeowner should own

  1. Claw hammer: In addition to driving a nail, the curved shape and v-groove notch helps to remove things.
  2. Handsaw: A basic tool for cutting. You can upgrade to a circular saw when you master your project skills.
  3. Measuring tape: They come in different lengths from 12′ to 25′ to 100′. (Newer digital tape measures also exist.)
  4. Cordless drill with bits: For boring holes or driving screws.
  5. Screwdrivers: Include slotted & Phillips head, because sometimes you don’t need the power of a cordless drill for a small job.
  6. Set of pliers: These help hold things in place while you’re working on a project. Styles include needle-nose, tongue & groove, and more.
  7. Adjustable wrenches: As the name implies, the head is movable to adjust to various size nuts, bolts, etc. Allen/hex wrench set (for hexagonal screws) are a necessity for many ready to assemble tables, bookcases and children’s toys.
  8. 4′ level: Yes, it is important for things to line up straight. (Newer laser levels are also available.)
  9. Utility knife & blades: This cutting tool will be used. A lot. Some knives have a self storing area to keep the blades handy.
  10. Putty knife: For scraping paint, glazing windows, or applying spackle, putty or plaster to walls or other surfaces.
  11. Tape: Painters, duct, and masking are a few of the varieties on the market. (When painting, do not use masking tape in place of the blue painters tape. It will not give you a clean edge and will leave a residue on the surface.)
  12. Glue: All-purpose, wood, and super are types of adhesives. Read the product labels to see if the glue will adhere properly for your project.
  13. Safety glasses/goggles: Always!
  14. Flashlight: Although not a “tool,” it comes in handy for hard-to-see project areas and any loss of electricity during a storm.


    Clockwise (from top left): Hammer, adjustable wrench, pliers/screwdriver, Phillips & slotted screwdriver tips, needle-nose pliers, utility knife.

You’re On Your Way

Now you can tackle small projects with these tools every new homeowner should own. As time goes on, you’ll want to add more tools for jobs that come up. While some tools can be found cheap, it may be best to pay a little more for better quality. Do your homework and research expensive tools before purchasing. How often will you use them? Do you really need it or can you use a rental?

And don’t forget about a good toolbox to keep small tools together and protected.

Finally, always use safety glasses while working on your projects. Consider dust masks and well ventilated areas for any projects with strong fumes or heavy dust. Keep safety in mind at all times.