Although it is lovely to hire outside help to tackle your home improvements and decorating, there will no doubt be quite a high cost. Some of the work can be quite specialised and you may need to hire professionals for certain jobs, especially electrics and plumbing. But if you are quite handy then a lot of the other stuff you can learn to do yourself.
Plus, if you do it yourself then you can literally save hundreds, even thousands, of pounds. This is probably why DIY in the UK has risen exponentially over the last six years. With the right tools, equipment and patience, you can renovate your home and have it look just the way you want, saving money in the process.
Essential DIY products
Before tackling any DIY project, you’ll need some tools and equipment at your disposal. To get you started, consider getting your hands on the below products for building and fixing that will come in handy for most DIY projects.
For more specialised projects, you will need specific tools which you can begin to purchase as and when you need them, or even hire them if they’re costly and only needed once.
These are the essentials you should have in your home DIY tool kit:
· Claw hammer
At some point, you will be banging nails into something. As such, a good claw hammer is essential. They come in different weights, and it is a good idea to ensure that the hammer you choose fits your hand. Generally speaking: the longer the nail, the heavier the hammer, the better.
· Super glue
Super glue is brilliant, and you can get different types for specific jobs. Good glue can hold things in place while you nail and cut them, can repair that annoying strip of wallpaper, and pretty much fix anything. You can also get your hands on a good sealant remover should things go horribly wrong.
· Retractable tape measure
This invaluable tool will tell you how long that blind is and how much you need to trim it by. It will give you the surface area of a wall or floor, allowing you to buy the right amount of paint or flooring. Tape measures tell you if that bookcase fits into that part of the room. I’ve lost count of how many DIY projects we’ve needed our tape measure for - probably all of them! Get one.
A good 20-inch general purpose hand saw will allow you to cut wood which at some point you may have to do. Most builders will tell you to buy one that has seven teeth per inch. This will see you in good stead and be suitable for 90% of your wood sawing needs. Ben, my husband, loves his jigsaw and it’s come in so handy for laying our own laminate flooring throughout our home. If you can get a jigsaw then do it!
· Stanley knife
A decent stanley knife has a variety of uses. You can trim carpet to size and score lines on tiles, so you know where to cut them. It can trim wallpaper and cut blinds to size. The list of uses is endless. We used ours last week to gently slice down the edges of our old door architrave before removing it. It’s also been handy for cutting underlay. Golden rule: Make sure you use a sharp blade and have a pack of spares for when they go blunt. A heavy duty Stanley knife is nice to hold and will stand the test of time.
You will need to mark where to drill, cut, score, and where to position the shelf. The uses are endless, and when done, you can rub out the pencil marks using an eraser. A sharpened pencil is a must in any tool box.
Get a good set of screwdrivers as you will no doubt be using them a lot. A decent set will give you a range of different heads that fit most screws. If you’re a fan of flat pack furniture then these will be invaluable!
This list isn’t exhaustive, but it should get you started. The price you invest in a decent home DIY tool kit will be minimal compared to paying someone else to do all the work. If you think you can do something yourself and save money in the process then go for it! There are numerous tutorials online nowadays that give everyone the chance to learn how to tackle many simple home renovation and decoration projects by themselves.