By Ali Sahabi of Optimum Group, LLC
President, Building Industry Association (BIA) Baldy View Chapter
The holiday season is upon us and offers a great opportunity for holiday shoppers with homeowners and homebuyers on their lists to make an important contribution to what will probably be for most Americans the biggest and most important investments they will ever make: essential tools every homeowner should have. So, if you are looking for ideas for useful gifts for friends, family or business associates, here courtesy of the National Association of Home Builders is a list of tools every homeowner should have.
The most essential tool for homeowners is a flashlight. They come in a wide variety of styles and price ranges.
For do-it-yourself enthusiasts or to be prepared for the occasional repair, hammers are as essential as flashlights. Start with a claw hammer for driving and pulling nails and a rubber mallet (also known as a soft - faced hammer) to strike wood-handled chisels or to tap into place soft materials that would be marred by a metal hammer face.
A good selection of screwdrivers – both slot-head and Phillips head - in different sizes are always important.
Paintbrushes ranging from one- to four inches wide and made of synthetic material or animal hair are always a great fit. The brush’s packaging indicates what paint works best with it.
Consider a good adjustable wrench or a set of crescent wrenches or general-use wrenches to turn any type of hex or square nut or bolt or objects with flat surfaces. Remember, plumbing wrenches are used to turn objects with round surfaces, such as pipes.
Another great gift idea is pliers, either a quality pair or a variety of pliers including plain and one of several specialty pliers (needle-nose or long-nose pliers that have thin, tapered jaws for reaching into tight spots or to hold and bend wire).
For the yard or general woodwork, consider saws with various-sized teeth (specific numbers of teeth per inch designated by ‘points’). The higher the number of points means the finer the cutting. An eight - point size saw is a good choice for general crosscut work.
Plastic safety goggles with front and covered sides large enough to fit over regular eyeglasses are an important addition to any toolbox.
Utility Knifes are known as trimming knifes or carpet knifes and are for cutting soft materials such as carpet, drywall, tape and string. A putty knife has a narrow blade with a squared-off end and is used primarily to apply glazing compound or for small scraping or spackling jobs.
If you will be looking at more complicated home improvement projects, one essential will be a good hand- or power drill. Get a variety of drill bits to drill precision holes. A power drill can also grind, sand, polish and accomplish other jobs with the correct accessories.
When you shop for or request tools, remember that garage sales and swap meets can be great places to purchase hand tools.
Don’t forget, the holiday season is a great time for homebuyers to start pulling together their downpayment funds by informing parents, family members and friends they will be home shopping and gifts of cash are a great way to start a down payment fund. If you will be giving or requesting gifts of cash for a downpayment fund, remember to sign or ask for ‘gift letter’ indicating that both parties consider the donation a gift.
Here in Baldy View Region, homes have always been built to the highest standards of design, technology, materials and workmanship and that means homeowners will always want to be prepared to improve or protect their investments – so gifts that support homebuying or homeownership better are gifts that keep on giving for a lifetime.
And have a happy Thanksgiving!