Resources for homeowners-to-be
May 18, 2010 8:31 AM   Subscribe

What are your favorite resources for homeowners?

SO and I are currently house hunting and will hopefully have a place of our own within the next few months. We've been living together for a while, though neither of us has ever owned a home. We have some handy friends/family, but we're not handy ourselves.

So - what are some useful resources for homeowners? Websites, forums, magazines, books, etc. I'm interested in learning about repairs, renovations, landscaping, building, and probably more that I'm forgetting.

posted by Tu13es to Home & Garden (11 answers total) 88 users marked this as a favorite
Best answer: Fine Homebuilding is my favorite. Reviews of tools, discussion of materials and quite a few how-to articles. Definitely worthwhile to subscribe online, even if you don't get the magazine.
posted by electroboy at 8:33 AM on May 18, 2010

Best answer: I have gotten tons of use out of the Complete Photo Guide to Home Repair. Anything that I've needed to do has been explained there with easy to follow instructions and (of course) pictures.

I've also learned a lot from Family Handyman magazine.
posted by Pater Aletheias at 8:46 AM on May 18, 2010 [1 favorite]

Best answer: This Old House has videos and lots of help for homeowners. I particularly like the Ask This Old House experts section.
posted by birdwatcher at 8:50 AM on May 18, 2010

Best answer: Assuming you're hoping to turn into Mr/Mrs. Handy Homeowner, one of the best things you can do is to spend an hour or two just walking the aisles of your local Home Depot or Lowes. Pay extra attention to the glue/tape aisle, the nail/screw aisle, and any aisle that looks like it has something for attaching one thing to another thing.

Just knowing ahead of time what sorts of things exist can really help you when you're looking for a solution to a problem.

Also browse through their book section. The Taunton Press has some really great books for homeowners.

Other recommendations:

The Black and Decker Guide to Wiring. Excellent book with lots of clear photos for dealing with any sort of home wiring repair or upgrade.

The most useful website for home issues is a little place you may have heard of called Ask Metafilter. Seriously. All the answers you need with none of the overhead that comes from asking a question on a specific forum full of enthusiasts.
posted by bondcliff at 8:56 AM on May 18, 2010

Best answer: has kept me sane and kept things flowing more than one time, in my house.

You don't need it until you need it, but then you need it.
posted by Danf at 9:22 AM on May 18, 2010

Best answer: There are jobs that are not for amateurs, and Homestars is the best way that I know of to find competent, honest tradespeople to work on your house.
posted by orange swan at 9:27 AM on May 18, 2010

Best answer: Kevin Kelly's Cool Tools Site. It's not always home related but there are loads of good ideas.
posted by JV at 6:26 PM on May 18, 2010

Best answer: I really love and learn a lot from how-to DIY videos on the Internet. For example, if you need to learn how to remove wallpaper or put down hardwood or laminate flooring, just type that in a google video or youtube search. There are also several websites that specialize in publishing How To videos and guides such as,,, etc.
posted by KimikoPi at 9:45 PM on May 18, 2010

Best answer: The THISisCarpentry and DIY Diva blogs, and Ask This Old House on TV. The Taunton books have been hit-or-miss for me.
posted by talldean at 5:55 AM on May 19, 2010

Response by poster: Thanks, all! Proof that it's not about quantity, but quality. Best answers for everyone!
posted by Tu13es at 5:12 AM on May 21, 2010

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