New House? The DIY List of What to Tackle First

New House? The DIY List of What to Tackle First

There is no short list of projects to tackle when you’re a new homeowner, especially if you’re moving in to a fixer upper house. So where should you begin? Naturally your timing and budget plays into the equation, but so does basic practicality. The DIY Playbook offers this short list of which Do-It-Yourself projects to begin first, and which ones can wait until you have more time and money.



Whether your hardwood floors need an update (or an overhaul), or there’s wall-to-wall carpet that needs replacing, having your floors done before you move in makes it much easier to move in your belongings. (Sanding and staining floors is a gigantic mess.) As an added bonus, it will make the house feel your own, once move-in day arrives.


Painting is a fun and creative way to add a fresh new look to your place. Whether you paint it yourself or hire a painter, it’s much easier to do with nothing on the walls or any furniture getting in the way. Depending on the timeframe and budget you have, decide if you prefer painting individual rooms or the whole house.


There’s no need to update all the lighting in the house, but tackling any desires you have for recessed lighting now will brighten your place and save you from living through a huge mess. Adding specialty fixtures is something you can weave in over time.

Steam Clean Carpets.

As noted in the section above to update your floors, anything carpet-related is much easier to tackle before something is on the floor. DIY Playbook blogger Casey writes that, “Getting the carpets cleaned will not only make the house look better but most importantly, it will give you peace of mind in helping you feel comfortable in your new space.”

Once you’ve knocked out the high priority items, which projects can wait?

  • New furniture.
  • Built-in bookshelves.
  • Accent walls.
  • Bath & kitchen makeovers.

It’s important to live in a space before making decisions you might later regret. So instead of forging ahead with these major projects, aim for mini updates that are more affordable. This will also buy you time to decide what your family really needs and wants in a remodel at a later date.