Are you a new homeowner or looking to buy a house for the first time?  Or looking for a gift for a new homeowner?

A well-stocked home toolkit can help you take good care of your investment. Whether you tackle big home improvement projects or stick to DIY basics like putting furniture together, hanging artwork, or fixing a leaky faucet, a good set of tools will help you get the job done.

Here are 10 tools every homeowner should have in their toolbox.

1. Hammer

A claw hammer is useful for both putting things together and taking them apart. They’re also handy for hanging pictures and other decor in your home. One side of the hammer is flat (used for driving nails into wood) and the other side has a v-shaped claw for removing nails.

Look for a hammer with a fiberglass handle: they’re more durable and help to reduce shock.

2. Level

This tool will make a lot of your home maintenance projects easier, as it takes the guesswork out of lining things up and makes hanging pictures and shelves a breeze. A level is a must-have for hanging items like wall decor, towel bars, and shelves, as well as bigger DIY projects like installing cabinets. 

You may want to keep both a 6-in and 12-in level on hand for different-sized projects.

3. Stud Finder

When you hang pictures and other items on your walls, you need to think about more than where it will look the best. You need to make sure the nails or screws you use to hang them can be secured into the wooden studs in your walls. That’s where a stud finder comes in.

A stud finder is a handheld tool that locates sturdy beams in the wall where you can safely secure heavier artwork, mirrors, shelves, or other hanging items. Look for a stud finder that can scan at different depths for different materials, including metal, pipes, and live wires.

4. Tape Measure

A locking tape measure is an essential tool for just about every repair or maintenance project. Use it to measure anything…for your DIY projects, to make sure new furniture will fit in your space, etc.

A 16ft tape measure will be adequate for a lot of projects, but you may want to opt for a 25ft or longer tape measure so you can take room measurements for painting projects and other larger-scale tasks.

Don’t have a tape measure yet? Use a measuring app on your phone. These apps aren’t always accurate, so don’t rely too heavily on them, but in a pinch they can give you approximate measurements.

5. Utility Knife

A utility knife (a.k.a., a Stanley knife or box cutter) is a sharp instrument that cuts through anything from packaging boxes to carpet. Even if you only use it to open delivery boxes, a utility knife is helpful to have on hand. It’ll come in handy for more projects than you can imagine.

Look for one with a comfortable ergonomic handle and a sturdy locking blade. And don’t forget to grab some replacement blades to have on hand!

6. Screwdriver Set

Screwdrivers are often-used tools for homeowners, as they’re useful for nearly any home project. They’re great for assembling and taking apart just about anything in your house, from furniture to cabinet hardware. They can also be used for tasks like tightening drawers, changing light switch covers, installing lights, and even opening paint cans.

There are two types of screwdrivers (Phillips and flathead) that come in multiple sizes, and each is used for different types of screws.

Invest in a set of Phillips and flathead screwdrivers in different sizes, or opt for a multipurpose screwdriver that allows you to switch out the bits. Whichever you choose, make sure it includes options for the smallest of screws.

7. Adjustable Wrenches

An adjustable wrench is a versatile tool for your home maintenance projects. A set of adjustable wrenches can help you tighten plumbing fixtures, assemble swing sets, fix leaky faucets, and more.

Look for a set with 6-, 8-, 10- and 12-inch handles. Longer handles give you more leverage when you need it, and shorter handles work better in tight spaces.

8. Set of Pliers

Pliers are useful in a wide variety of situations, including minor plumbing repairs (tightening up a leaky sink or replacing a shower head, for example). You can use them to straighten bent power cord plugs, slice wiring, and get a grip on nearly anything. 

Look for a set that includes tongue-and-groove, diagonal-cutting, long-nose, and slip-joint pliers.

9. Handsaw

For bigger projects you’ll want to invest in (or borrow) a power saw, but a handsaw will do the job for just about any home maintenance project. They work great for trimming lumber or molding and other small wood-cutting projects. Look for a saw with a thick blade and a wide, ergonomic handle.

10. Cordless Drill

Is a cordless power drill really one of the tools every homeowner should have?

Maybe not—you could certainly get by without it for a while. But if you can grab one now, it will definitely come in handy and make your home maintenance projects a little easier. 

Cordless drills typically have a rechargeable battery pack so it’s easier to carry them around and reach tighter spaces. They’re great for tasks like installing shelves, repairing deck boards, building a treehouse or outdoor play area for the kids…you get the picture. 

So there you have it…the tools every homeowner should have. But don’t stress about buying everything at once—just start gathering items one at a time. Beyond this list, you can continue to grow your collection by picking up additional tools as new projects arise.


If you need a project done that’s beyond your ability to DIY, you can lean on the team at Outdoor Solutions. Whether you’re planning a remodel or need a new deck, porch, or patio built, we’ve got your back. 

Contact us today to discuss your needs and schedule your next project.