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Self-taught DIY expert, Nicole Herrick, shares her top tips for home renos

We chatted to Nicole Herrick, a local DIY expert, on her favourite tools, tips and tricks to transform your home. From circular saws to warm lighting, read on for Nicole’s advice.

What are your top tool recommendations for DIY enthusiasts?

When it comes to power tools for those just getting started in DIY I recommend:

  1. A drill with hammer function so that you can make it through hard surfaces like brick and cement when you need to.
  2. A driver, if it’s within your budget. You’ll be amazed at how much power it has for driving in screws that your drill just doesn’t have, plus by not having to swap out the drill bit for a drive bit for each screw, you’ll save so much time.
  3. A circular saw (battery). You can cut just about anything with a circular saw from large panel to cross cut lengths making the most versatile tool in my collection.
  4. A jigsaw (battery). There’s always times when you need to cut a curve.
  5. A nail gun (battery) – a big one. They might look and feel ridiculously heavy (if you’re new to DIY work) but they’re fine once you start using them. The flexibility to knock together anything from a small box to a house frame is worth the extra weight.

What was the first tool you purchased?

I asked for a drill and basic tools set for Christmas when I first moved out of home at 18. But it wasn’t until my late 30’s that I really started to get more into DIY and started buying power tools for myself. I’ve amassed about 40 now and feel like I have enough to do just about anything.

What tips and tricks do you have for people looking to transform a room like their garage?

If it’s dark, bring in some light! Paint the walls white (a warm off white works best), add in a window or a glass door, or even a skylight. You can even add a full wall with a sliding door just inside your roller door so you can shutter it up when not in use. And keeping your roller door means it can be easily turned back into a garage at a later point if needed and doesn’t negatively affect the resale value of your home.

Storage is key! If you’re on a budget, look for second hand wardrobes or cabinets and paint them the same colour to make them cohesive. Adding matching handles also brings them together.

Make sure you have plenty of power for whatever you’ll be doing in that space. Attach powerboards to underneath workbenches for easy access without looking unsightly. Tape extension cords to the floor in the same colour as your flooring to hide them.

Add extra lighting that is the right temperature for your space. Sometimes an old fluro brings the vibe of space right down. By adding a new fixture with some bright daylight bulbs, you’ll be able to see what you’re doing and not feel too clinical. You can also add additional under shelf lights, auto on / off lights inside your cupboards and lamps to darken a gloomy corner.

Do you have any recommendations on what makes a good workspace?

Creating a good workspace is all about what makes YOU feel happy. Is there a way you can display what you do in the space? Do you love exploding colours and textures or are you more drawn to minimalist chic spaces?

Just look around for inspiration and try to figure out what vibe, features and functionality is going to work for you. Create a mood board, then set up a shopping list. It doesn’t matter if you have an unlimited budget or you’re on a super tight budget, there is always a way to DIY a space that you’ll be proud of.

There you have it! Some awesome recommendations from Nicole that will help you take on any DIY project your heart desires. Don’t forget our myQ technology can help you keep your renovated garage safe, whilst adding an easy lighting option that can be controlled from your phone.

For more information about Chamberlain’s range of garage door openers and accessories, visit our website or call 0800 653 667.

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