Gift Guide for the Beginner Home DIY’er

When we first moved into the house, we had a sorry looking collection of tools for renovating. We were running back and forth to my parent’s house, on what seems like a daily basis, to pick up another tool that we needed.

We’ve slowly been adding to the collection and over the past two years have developed a pretty good idea of what we use on a regular basis and what we didn’t necessarily need to spend the money on. Our experience, combined with the fact that not everyone has the luxury of being able to borrow a tool from their parents whenever they need it, led us to creating a resource/gift guide for the beginner home DIY’er, with options for every budget.

We’ve also included a few bonus saving tips at the bottom of the post. Last thing, we’ll be adding to this as more tools come to mind, so be sure to check back often 🙂

gift guide for the beginner home diy'er

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Safety glasses. Buy multiple. They’re great to have on hand if anyone comes over to help out or if you easily misplace things… not speaking from experience, of course.

Ear protection is a must if you’re working around the saw or sander for an extended period of time. Things can get prettttty loud after awhile.

If anything drywall or putty-related is going to be done, the joint knife is a must. This is what we used to mud the walls and fill the spaces in the plywood floor.

Pliers are a great universal tool that can come in for the assist on a variety of reno projects.

If you have man hands and/or short nails, needle nose pliers are a lifesaver.

Because you really can’t have too many screwdrivers and if your recipient is anything like us, we can neve find one when it’s needed 😉

The wire stripper is great for any beginner-type electrical work that needs to be done and makes a pretty frequent appearance during our renovations.

Purdy brand paint brushes are our go-to. I know it’s hard to stomach spending upwards of $8.00 per brush, but they’re worth it. Two+ years later and our brushes are still completely functional.

I didn’t understand the importance or role of the drill bit until I completely split a tray I was making because I didn’t pre-drill. This 100-piece drill bit set is a great starting point for any beginner.



I know, extension cords are NOT glamorous. But they definitely come in handy and I don’t think you can ever have too many. This one works outdoors and is great for that DIY’er that likes to do their projects outdoors.

This Brad Nailer is a great starter. It’s all purpose and can be used for pretty much anything as long as you have long enough nails.


UNDER $100

These drills have built many a project in our house and helped tear down a few walls as well 🙂

This Dewalt sander is just wonderful. It’s been my go-to for all the furniture makeovers I’ve tackled.

We discovered this tool last year and the beautiful vanity in our guest bathroom was made using the Kreg Jig. Also the entryway table and the two side tables in our living room. Needless to say, this baby has gotten its use and if you’re wanting to get into woodworking, this tool is a MUST.

Having lightup ends on your extension cord is one of those things that you don’t realize how amazing it is until it’s gone. This came in handy for us this past summer when we had [way too many] late nights outside working on the garage.


UNDER $250

This air compressor has been hauled up and down our flight of stairs more times than we can count. Brett reminds me of this every time I ask him to haul it around for a project. Thankfully, the handle and wheels make it a little easier for transportation.

If we’re being honest, the miter saw we have isn’t our favorite and not something we’d recommend. This stand, however, is AH-MAZING and so worth the price. It makes moving the saw around our basement extremely easy and was so easy to put together.

Full disclosure: our ‘work bench’ is a sheet of plywood over two saw horses. However, if the budget allows, this Kobalt work bench looks like a renovator’s dream and the price point isn’t too bad, either. Thankfully, we have a LOT of shelving in the basement for storage, but if that isn’t an option, getting something like this with the drawers, hooks and pegboard is the next best thing.


Additional ways to save


This site gives you cash back when making purchases at certain stores. Right now, they have a 1.5% cash back for all purchases made at Lowe’s. Click here to sign up.


Pretty much the same thing as E-bates; you receive money back when you make a purchase. They’re different in that they usually have specfic products that need to be purchased in order to receive the rebate. Selling point: Target is a retailer they have partnered with. Click here to sign up and enter in my referral code for a $10 gift: wpxmeye

Happy shopping!

All our best,

About North Country Nest

Hi, we're Brett & Kelly! We're tackling our first home renovation and would love for you to join us on our journey of reno projects, DIYs and home decor tips.

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