Today, mobile apps for smartphones and tablets are giving homeowners extra help with their Do-It-Yourself projects. Here are 12 cool apps for both Apple (iOS) and Android phones and tablets (unless otherwise noted).
Dream Home. Great for inspiration. Shows beautiful interior design photos you can update weekly. Easy nav. $0.99 for iOS, $1.99 for Android.
Houzz. A social network dedicated to interior design, home improvement, and architecture. Tons of articles, photos, discussions, plus links to local resources. Free.
SketchBook Pro. This pro-level sketchbook lets you digitally draw up ideas and plans. $4.99.
MagicPlan. You can measure rooms with this app, which then produces floor plans, complete with symbols for doors, windows, and furniture. Free version lets you export plans into watermarked PDFs and other files. Subscription versions remove watermarks for sharing, and give you more symbols to work with. Freemium.
Benjamin Moore Color Capture and Sherwin-Williams ColorSnap. When you see a color you like, take a photo with your smartphone or tablet. These apps will instantly give you matching paint color recommendations. Free.
WikiHow. Thousands of DIY how-to-guides on everything under the sun, including plenty on home improvements and repairs. Free.
iFixIt. Guides for repairing everything from appliances and furniture to vehicles. Learn how to diagnose problems, break open devices, replace parts, and make repairs. You can also buy tools and parts at iFixIt’s online store. Free.
iHandy Carpenter. Uses iPhone or iPad built-in sensors to create all kinds of tools: plumb bob to check verticality of walls; protractor to measure angles up to 180°; onscreen ruler for small measurements; plus surface level and bubble level bar. $1.99, iOS only.
Handyman Calculator. Contains dozens of calculation tools: unit converters (inches to centimeters); fractional calculators; density calculators; arc length; rebar weight. Use for everything from drywall to tiling. Free, Android only.
iHandy Level. Turns your smartphone or tablet into a digital level. Essential for hanging pictures or putting up shelves. Free.
Home Improvement Calcs. Includes calculators and estimation tools for common home improvement, construction, and landscaping projects. Enter the measurements and the app tells you how much floor covering you’ll need or how much concrete to mix for a retaining wall. $1.99, iOS only.