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Handy man

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November 21, 2011 – Comments (26)

I will be moving in to my own apartment soon, and paying my own rent for the first time ever (well i pay my mom $150 a month now but that doesn't count).  Soon enough I will want my own house.  I never met my father or grandfather, and I had no siblings.  I was raised by my mom and grandma, and I always lived in a citi, and we always rented so we always had a super.  Due to these circumstances, I know NOTHING about handy work...at all.  I can use a screwdriver and a hammer when instructed but thats about it.  I can't do any housework other than cleaning.  I wanted to do habitat for humanity but they only have 1 weekend available every 4 months. 

What I am looking for is a place that will teach me for free in exchance for me doing labor for free.  Any places like that exist, specifically in nyc, hopefully in brooklyn?  The home depot classes are more oriented on decorating and design rather than the manual labor aspect.

26 Comments – Post Your Own

#1) On November 21, 2011 at 2:04 PM, truthisntstupid (83.28) wrote:

A few winters ago, a pipe burst in our basement.  Bookworm that I am, I have several books do-it-yourself books on home repairs.

I'm sure that someone who actually knew what they were doing would have done in a few hours what it took me a day or two to figure out.  

But figure it out I did.  And while I was at it, I also added a couple of needed shutoff valves.  

Almost everything I've ever learned was self-taught from a book.

Including, unfortunately, some basic plumbing skills.

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#2) On November 21, 2011 at 2:14 PM, truthisntstupid (83.28) wrote:

Like you, I know nothing, and have no one to show me.  Same situation. 

A few of the big hardcover do-it-yourself home repair books like the ones you see at any Home Depot or Lowe's can be mighty handy.

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#3) On November 21, 2011 at 2:54 PM, leohaas (31.56) wrote:

Don't worry.

Most bloggers here know nothing about investing, yet keep on posting on this investment blog. They are no Economists, yet write long blogs about it. They are no Climatologists, yet write about global warming. Most recently, folks knowing nothing about geology started blogging about fracking. And to boot: they are proud of their lack of education.

So, welcome to the club! Go ahead and do you own handy man work without knowing how, and above all, be proud of it!

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#4) On November 21, 2011 at 2:54 PM, griderX (96.13) wrote:

"What I am looking for is a place that will teach me for free in exchance for me doing labor for free.  Any places like that exist, specifically in nyc, hopefully in brooklyn?  The home depot classes are more oriented on decorating and design rather than the manual labor aspect." 

Do you currently have a job or want a job in the labor industry?

If you are looking for work...you can hang out at HomeDepot and ask anyone you see that owns a van or company truck if they need free labor in return for an apprenticeship.

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#5) On November 21, 2011 at 2:58 PM, portefeuille (99.60) wrote:

Most bloggers here know nothing about investing, yet keep on posting on this investment blog. They are no Economists, yet write long blogs about it. They are no Climatologists, yet write about global warming. Most recently, folks knowing nothing about geology started blogging about fracking. And to boot: they are proud of their lack of education.

thanks for the laugh. very true!!!

long live the know-nothings ...

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#6) On November 21, 2011 at 3:00 PM, portefeuille (99.60) wrote:

#5 so far no one has tried to write about mathematics or theoretical physics. it can't be long until someone does ...

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#7) On November 21, 2011 at 4:10 PM, RallyCry (< 20) wrote:

@#3  Leohaas , I'm so glad we have bloggers on the website that serve as topic police. I thought the purpose of the blog was to ask questions of others, to share and learn information etc. I see you posted on my blog and asked what fracking and earthquakes had to do with investing. I responded but I see you did not answer me back. My guess is you did not care what my response was, or maybe you thought I was uneducated. My question to you is, who appointed you blog sheriff?

I can understand if you are too busy policing the blogs to answer my questions. However, your blanket dismissal of topics that you don't deem as investment related only serves to discourage people like Valyooo and I from sharing ideas with other people who help us learn.  Maybe that isn't important to you, but it is important to us.

Here's a question to you. (It follows your logic that only experts should post about topics they are credentialed in) Looking at your blog, what credentials do you have to call MSFT or T a sell? Maybe you are an accomplished research analyst or portfolio manager and if so, I stand corrected.

Who declared Jersey Shore distasteful and Abercrombie and Fitch tasteful? Are you an accomplished social critic? Furthermore, maybe you can explain how "The Situation" relates to investing?

Valyooo, I am in the same boat as you. Time is money, so it's worth it to hire a pro...If you need help, I'm sure LeoHaas could help you identify someone who is NOT a handyman.

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#8) On November 21, 2011 at 4:25 PM, truthisntstupid (83.28) wrote:

(Raises hand) LOL I'm sure no handyman...but I did save hundreds of $$$

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#9) On November 21, 2011 at 5:01 PM, buffalonate (94.22) wrote:

Go to the library and take out a home repair book.  That is how I learned to fix up things.     

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#10) On November 21, 2011 at 5:45 PM, PeteysTired (< 20) wrote:

leohaas - 1

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#11) On November 21, 2011 at 6:04 PM, Valyooo (99.41) wrote:

leohaas i am a little confused...was that in any way directed at me? because clearly i am trying to avoid being one of those who talks about what he knows nothing about

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#12) On November 21, 2011 at 6:16 PM, truthisntstupid (83.28) wrote:

Valy, I think it was just a bit of wry humor.  I actually thought it was directed at me, but chose not to let it bother me.

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#13) On November 21, 2011 at 6:23 PM, blesto (31.85) wrote:

Go ahead and take that 1 weekend every 4 months and you're sure to find the person you need to talk to working on the Habitat for humanity worksite. 

Bring a toolbelt, a good hammer, and a strong back. They'll know what to do with you. If you're a good worker they'll certainly want you back for more than the one weekend. You may be surprised with all the little skills you'll pick up.

Oh! And do you have a car, truck, or van?

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#14) On November 21, 2011 at 6:29 PM, truthisntstupid (83.28) wrote:

#13

If you do that, try to pick up a 16 oz framing hammer. 

 

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#15) On November 21, 2011 at 6:43 PM, materialsman92 (34.85) wrote:

#6

someone will soon

I know him personally

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#16) On November 21, 2011 at 7:44 PM, awallejr (81.55) wrote:

Duct tape is your friend.

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#17) On November 21, 2011 at 7:51 PM, truthisntstupid (83.28) wrote:

#16

Oh yeah!  Be sure and catch The Red Green Show!

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#18) On November 21, 2011 at 8:59 PM, HarryCarysGhost (99.68) wrote:

I've used this website-

http://www.diynetwork.com/

It's nice to have the steps printed out.

Also start slowly aquireing a kick ass tool box. The money you save by doing things yourself will be well worth the cost of buying the best tools.

Remember this also applies to basic automotive repairs, and you can usually find answers to that on the web also.

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#19) On November 21, 2011 at 9:14 PM, NOTvuffett (< 20) wrote:

Valyoo, there is nothing wrong with learning how to do simple repairs or projects from how-to books or other sources.  It is not that hard.

How is this related to investing?  Easy, as a young man every dollar you can keep in your pocket now can work for you for decades.  "Emergency" repairs may likely be plumbing related so I would start there. Find out where the main valve for the water is located and make sure you can close it if needed.

Aside from the practical benefits of being able to perform these tasks, there is also an oddly satisfying  sense of accomplishment.

 

 

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#20) On November 21, 2011 at 9:55 PM, GNUBEE (24.85) wrote:

Valyoo,

Home depot has a big do it yourself book. It's pretty good for lots of things. I'm able to do just about anything to repair my home/cars, but have always liked "tinkering". I was given one if these books when I purchased my first home, and was suprised that it was actually useful as a homeowner. Try to read that book cover to cover before you need it.

While the book is useful, having at least one friend who can help (and knows what they're doing) is invaluable, and can usually be paid in pizza and beer.

For cars, I (silly as it may seem) will not purchase a car if it does not have a great owner/user forum. Between that and the alldata site (check that out too), I only have to see a mechanic once a year for inspections.

First and foremost never reach beyond your comfort level, paying an electrician is much better than frying yourself. And there is a wealth of info on how things work on the interwebs!

Good luck, I always like to see self sufficient people.

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#21) On November 21, 2011 at 10:00 PM, zymok (< 20) wrote:

Ask your co-workers. Chances are, there's a large percentage who do their own repairs and upgrades and are willing to get you started on a project. Some of them may even know what they're talking about :)

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#22) On November 21, 2011 at 10:23 PM, devoish (98.26) wrote:

Valyooo,

For me it is much better to see videos of repair work on the internet. Usually the longer ones will give you a little more.

It is still better to work with someone who really is a professional. Whether you work for someone to learn, or hire someone, look for someone who is excited about what they are doing. If someone can bore you to death going on and on about plumbing, and sweating pipes and proper venting, hire him.

For your car, I and many others, will try to answer any question you have on the TMF Message boards. http://boards.fool.com/buying-and-maintaining-a-car-100143.aspx 

Best wishes,

Steven

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#23) On November 22, 2011 at 9:38 AM, leohaas (31.56) wrote:

Valyoo,

I know you are sincere. I was just taking an easy shot at the know-nothings who post here all the time. I love to point out how ridiculous they are. They keep on promising to ignore me, but they never do.

Good luck with your handy man project. I am in the same boat as you (I have two left hands, and I am not left-handed). Maybe I can learn something as well by reading your blog.

FWIW: I recently repaired a leaking toilet using a video on the internet (see #22, probably also suggested by others).

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#24) On November 22, 2011 at 10:05 AM, GNUBEE (24.85) wrote:

If someone can bore you to death going on and on about plumbing, and sweating pipes and proper venting, hire him.

So true.

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#25) On November 22, 2011 at 2:38 PM, lemoneater (78.14) wrote:

I would suggest watching This Old House for ideas. (Only they usually have a lot more money to work with than the average home owner does which frustrates my husband somewhat.)  http://www.thisoldhouse.com/toh/tv/ask-toh

Wishing you very Happy Thanksgiving! 

 

 

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#26) On November 23, 2011 at 2:04 PM, Melaschasm (55.51) wrote:

A few years ago I bought an 80 year old duplex.  I can make most repairs by using a step by step book and watching how to videos.  I have learned that  hiring professionals for the complicated jobs is cheaper than spending my own time.  However, most of the simple little maintence tasks are best done by me.

If you do some of the easy stuff and find that you enjoy this type of work, you will have a different profit point than I have, but dangerous stuff should always be done by a professional.

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