People have become “a little bit lazy” when it comes to handiwork in the house according to Pete the Builder.
A survey by LV General Insurance showed one third of people are unsure where the fusebox is in their home, and a quarter admit they don't know where their boiler is.
Some 40% don't know how to wire a plug, and 34% can't change a lightbulb. A further 41% did not where to find the stopcock for water use.
Pete Finn, also known as ‘Pete the Builder’ on Home Rescue, told The Pat Kenny Show people just don't put the same effort into housework anymore.
“A new generation is coming through, technology has advanced an awful lot as well,” he said.
“People have kind of left behind some simple life skills that can get you out of everyday practical problems.”
It’s particularly important to know these skills when it’s harder and harder to afford to hire a repairman.
“The cost of living has gone up and it's you know too expensive to charge someone,” he said.
“There's no point in wasting money or delaying a fix for weeks to get somebody to come and do it.”
Instead of using a phone to call for help, people should use their phones to learn DIY skills, Mr Finn said.
“I can literally think anything up in my head right now and go to YouTube - there will be some sort of a video, even down to specific plans.
“Some of them are American-based or based in different countries, so you have to be careful what you’re looking at is relevant.”
The simple stuff
Mr Finn said everyone should know the “simple” stuff “in their own home”.
“You should know where to stopcock is - usually it's under the kitchen sink,” he said. "That allows you to turn off the cold-water supply to your house.
“Your fuse board obviously is your support system for the electricity directly your household - you've got power gone in one part of your house, you can go to a fuse board you can have a quick look and identify the problem.”