Homeowners often fall into one of two categories: the people who were practically born wearing tool belts and can tackle any project with confidence, and the ones who panic when it comes time to change a lightbulb.
As for me? I’m probably somewhere in the middle of those two extremes. I’m always on the lookout for new tricks and tools to help make projects around the house a little easier.
No matter where you fall on the spectrum of home maintenance competency, here are a few products that promise to lend a helping hand for your next project.
My husband and I used this kit to quickly give a dingy old bathtub a bright, new makeover. The prep was simple and required just a little bit of sanding and cleaning. After rolling on a coat of the epoxy, we had a shiny tub for a fraction of what it would have cost to replace it. Pick it up at the Home Depot for $24.
My friend Meg Hemmelgarn, home decor blogger at Green With Decor, swears by this stuff for easily filling nail holes in your walls.
“It’s spackle, primer, a putty knife, and a sanding pad all in one convenient tool, which means it’s easy to store and keep track of,” she says.
In just a few minutes, you can cross this task off your to-do list. Find it on Amazon for just $9.
Sprucing up outdoor furniture is less tedious with the help of this oil that can also be used on decks, siding, and railings.
Use a brush or pad to rub the oil into furniture, and choose from five different natural shades to match the color of the wood you’re working with. Not only will your furniture look better, but this oil also provides protection from water and sun damage. Buy it online from Walmart for $19.
4. Tack cloths
Tack cloths are, well, tacky. But in a good way.
“These are great for picking up dirt and dust after sanding doors or furniture prior to painting,” Hemmelgarn says.
Their sticky surface gives them the power to pick up small particles better than a rag or paper towel, and for just a few dollars, they’re well worth the money. Pick up a three-pack of tack cloths from the Home Depot for less than $3.
If you live in a drafty old house like me—or in any house that endures wild temperature swings as the seasons change—weatherstripping might be the best five bucks you’ll ever spend.
This inexpensive adhesive can be used to plug gaps in your doors and windows, which helps keep cold air outside and energy bills down. Buy it from the Home Depot for $4.
Superglue? That’s kid stuff. Graduate to Gorilla Glue Clear Grip, one of Hemmelgarn’s standbys for quick fixes.
“This is great for small repairs around the house, such as fixing a broken candlestick, lamp, or even a sandal strap,” she says. “I’ve also used it to glue a button back on an ottoman. It can be used on almost any surface.”
Find it at Walmart for less than $5.
Pressure washers are fun—imagine your favorite childhood Super Soaker, but with a staggering amount of water power. They also make exterior cleanup a breeze, whether you want to wash your siding or a clean a muddy concrete walkway.
Pressure washers vary in power and price. (This $60 model at the Home Depot “delivers a mighty blast”—up to 1,350 pounds per square inch.) You can also rent one, or score a deal on a used one on Craiglist or Facebook Marketplace, which has worked out well for me. (Our secondhand electric pressure washer cost only five bucks!) Just be sure to use this tool with caution, since the powerful stream can cause serious damage if you don’t aim carefully.
Painter’s tape is great for helping you stay within the lines, but it can also damage finished surfaces if you’re not careful. That’s why Hemmelgarn always reaches for this tape that was specifically created for delicate surfaces.
“This is great when you need to use painter’s tape over an area with fresh paint, a faux finish, laminate, or wallpaper,” Hemmelgarn says. “It doesn’t ruin the surface underneath, so tape away! Plus, I like that it’s easy to see through so you can be certain you’re taping along a perfect line.”
Buy it from Amazon for $9.
9. Hair snake
For a major plumbing crisis, I recommend keeping a professional on speed dial. But for run-of-the-mill trouble with a slow drain, using a plastic hair snake is a safe, easy way to clear up clogs in the sink or shower.
The “yuck” factor is high—expect to see a lot of hair and mystery gunk—but it doesn’t require any chemicals that could cause damage to your pipes, which is a major plus. For less than $3 at the Home Depot, you can’t beat the price.
10. A paint sprayer
After seeing everything my friend Meg has quickly and beautifully painted with a paint sprayer, from her walls to shutters to metal railings and furniture, I might never use a brush or roller again. You can’t beat the ease of a paint sprayer when your goal is to apply smooth, even coats in as little time as possible.
Paint sprayer prices vary and generally start above $100, but you can find secondhand bargains or opt to rent one for the day.
The post 10 Game-Changing Products That’ll Help Homeowners DIY Like a Pro appeared first on Real Estate News & Insights | realtor.com®.