Practical Knowledge on Houses - Where to Get?

I’d like to learn more about houses, the building techniques, why certain building materials are used in certain environment, etc. A lot of it is “I love to learn”, and also I am embarrassed that I cannot tell you what building materials were used on my house, what type roof I have, how to check/fix faults around the house, etc. Do you know where/how I can learn more, eg recommend a book or a website? I have googled, looked around whirlpool and other forums, browsed fb and reddit groups, and searched the local library, to no avail. My search terms had to be quite specific to come up with something, and what I found were also too specific.


  • +9

    Best approach is to buy an old house, pull it appart and then put it back together peice by peice.

    • +1

      I’m a fan of the show grand designs, and self build tends to be expensive due to lack of knowledge and lack of industry contacts. I do dream of building a house of my own though.

  • +7

    Go to a new housing estate. There will be many houses at different stages of completion.

  • +2

    Watch the diy shows.

  • +1

    Go learn the trade?

  • +1

    There's a Readers Digest book about home maintenance which is a good starting point.

    Check out your local TAFE they may run short courses covering your needs or point you in the right direction.

    Any Men's sheds or Neighbourhood houses near you? Often retired tradies are available to supply information.

    This may also help.

  • +2

    My collection:

    May get you started…

    Grand designs is a fav. The other more commercial shows, not so much.

  • +1

    Bunnings and YouTube are great for DIY projects and fixes to basic home maintenance.

    I have been fixing up an old wooden toy box (sand back and stain) and followed Bunnings entire online tutorial about restoring wooden furniture. I also used their videos to help with seeding my lawn from scratch and also replacing the grout in my showers.

    YouTube taught me how to put the hole-saw attachments into my drill (as the kit came with parts but no instructions), repair my Bosch dishwasher and fix my electric roller door.

    Bunnings run classes (pre COVID) on a lot of DIY topics. Might be worth a visit to your local to see what classes are running that month.

  • +1

    I have googled, looked around whirlpool and other forums, browsed fb and reddit groups, and searched the local library

    Have you also tried…

    And as others said if you take on some small DIY projects I think it will help a lot.

  • +2

    I am a registered builder in VIC.

    If you are in VIC, TAFE is now FREE for both the Cert IV and Diploma in Building & Construction.
    If you aren't up for taking a course of study, these two books should help bring you up to speed pretty quick.
    (ignore that it says NSW)

    And if you read and learn fast, nothing beats reading Volume 2 of the National Construction Code. It's free to download in PDF and makes great bed time reading:

  • +1

    Learn from google and YouTube.
    Dont google and youtube "how/where to learn"
    Just ask questions. If u had a builder in your house, you wouldn't ask him if there are any books he would recommend. U would just ask him the questions.

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