Author Topic: Picking up handyman skills in Singapore  (Read 208 times)

tony.james

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Picking up handyman skills in Singapore
« on: April 02, 2019, 12:30:22 AM »
Hoping there are some folks here based in Singapore or have lived in similar locations.

Years ago I was well and truly ripped off with a home renovation. The way things work over here is that foreign labour with only basic skills are paid low wages, cheap materials are usually used (ie think particle board cabinetry instead of solid wood), and some fat cat at the top banks an absolute fortune. First world prices, third world quality in many cases.

I've read enough MMM articles now to give me the desire to pick up some handyman skills myself. This was a hard mindset to adopt, as growing up, my father's good friend was a Master Builder. I watched and learned the philosophy of getting a professional to do such things and avoid rookie mistakes. Don't worry, I've broadened my mindset now :)

I'd love to be able to weatherstrip my doors, replace and varnish my balcony planter box decking, build some cabinets to house my washing machine and *gasp* even do a bathroom renovation (I was quoted US$7.5K to renovate each of my two small bathrooms).

The only question is, how? We have a few disadvantages in Singapore (no complainypants-ing, just obstacles that I *will* learn to overcome). First, most of us live in apartments, with no garages, sheds or yards to house and use power tools. Actually it's pretty hard to even buy power tools over here, they're only purchased by tradespeople. I have absolutely no handyman skills to start with (can't even hammer a nail), so I'm starting from ground zero. We don't have Home Depot-like stores that provide all the advice and run 'how to' sessions either.

Would very much appreciate any advice the fine folk here have to offer. Ideally I'd love to shadow somebody and learn over weekends or random projects, or even make new friends who could share some knowledge. Open to all suggestions!