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Must-have Outdoor Tools for First-time Homeowners

2 people standing in front of new home

You gain more than a few new responsibilities when you buy your first house, and yard maintenance is one of the biggest. You don’t want your landscape to fall into disrepair, as it will drastically reduce the look and function of your property — but as a first-time homeowner, you might not know what you need to keep your home’s exterior in tip-top shape.

The first step in home maintenance is acquiring the tools you need to get the jobs done right. Here is a comprehensive list of yard tools you need in your backyard shed to keep your home’s landscaping on point.


Even if you have drought-tolerant landscaping — even if your yard has been totally zero-scaped, with not a plant in sight — your property needs a hose. Hoses come in handy for more than watering plants, so having one on hand will always be convenient. You should acquire a hose that can comfortably reach the farthest corner of your yard from your spigot.


Another valuable tool even if your yard is minimally landscaped, a rake helps ensure a tidy outdoor appearance. Leaf rakes will clean up smaller, lighter clutter, while gravel rakes can help even out rocks and sand. You should store your rakes in a convenient location as you will need to access them more often than other yard tools.


You might be surprised by how often you need to use a shovel to maintain your yard. There are dozens of types of shovels; you might want to conduct some research on the different varieties and consider your yard’s distinct needs before making shovel investments. Some widely applicable shovels include: flat shovels, trowels, snow shovels and digger shovels.


Loppers are manual tools for snipping off branches that are less than an inch wide. If you hope to make gardening a main hobby, you need a variety of loppers and pruners, but even if you are only interested in yard maintenance, loppers are key for keeping shrubs and small trees in order.


The fewer trips you have to make around your yard, the sooner yard work will be over. Wheelbarrows make yard chores more efficient by helping you haul piles of leaves, mulch, landscaping stones and more wherever you need them to go. You can consider wheelbarrow features — like material, handle type, number of wheels and more — based on what types of yard chores you expect to complete.

Extension Cord

Not many homeowners consider extension cords to be outdoor tools — which is a mistake. Many outdoor power tools rely on electricity, but outdoor outlets tend to be few and far between. You should have at least one outdoor extension cord that is as long as your hose, capable of reaching from an outlet to the farthest corner of your yard.

Leaf Blower

If your yard is smaller, you might be able to make do with a leaf rake alone, but come fall, most homeowners appreciate the help of a leaf blower. These power tools make it easier to corral fallen leaves and other debris into piles, for faster and simpler bagging.

Reciprocating Saw or Chainsaw

If you have a single tree in your yard, you need some kind of power saw to make it safer and easier to cut through thick limbs and trunks. Reciprocating saws are smaller and less powerful but might be appropriate if you have limited experience with power tools. A slightly more versatile option might be an electric chainsaw, but you should consider all types of chainsaws before making your investment.

Lawn Mower

More and more homeowners are replacing their organic lawns with artificial turf, but if you still have grass growing in your yard, you definitely need a lawn mower. If you are able-bodied with a small lawn, you might make do with a push mower, but if you have a larger property, you can invest in a riding mower to make short work of your lawn.

There is a large number of yard tools available, and many of them make yard chores easier and more enjoyable. As you become more familiar with the needs of your home’s exterior, you can add to these essentials to give yourself the right tools to keep your landscape looking nice.