How to Get Your Husband to Work on Your Honey-Do List

Every wife has one—a lengthy honey-do list of home improvements she would really like to be taken care of ASAP.

And every husband has reasons, some may even be quite legitimate, as to why he just hasn’t gotten around to everything on the list yet.

One thing is for sure, there are some ways to approach him about this sensitive topic that will not inspire him to want to get to work. And there are some ways that would probably inspire him to get moving.

Here are some ideas from a very happily married wife we know…

My husband has taught himself to be extremely handy over the course of our 26 years of marriage.

In the beginning, I tried to motivate him to work on house projects in ways that hurt him and our marriage. I’d like to help other wives avoid that!

It just made us both miserable.

Some approaches that will probably not motivate your husband (or anyone):

  • Yelling
  • Calling him names
  • Threatening divorce
  • Throwing things

Yes, it may be tempting to resort to these tactics, especially when you feel like you are running out of patience. It can be extremely difficult living with needed repairs for a long season. But you know that in the end, you don’t actually want to hurt him or your marriage. You just want the list taken care of so you can both enjoy living in your beautiful home together in peace.

Unfortunately, an unhealthy approach to asking about home repairs can lead you to need marriage repairs, which may be even more pricey than the house issues! No one wants that!

It can be good to remember that even though your honey-do list is important, your relationship and the way you both treat each other is a lot more important—in the grand scheme of things.

So instead of losing your cool, remind him how wonderful you are and how much he adores you by approaching him in more productive ways.

You may just inspire him to get moving on the list. But whether he works on the list right away or takes a bit more time, you will both enjoy your marriage a whole lot more.

You know the old saying, "You can attract more flies with honey than with vinegar."

It’s true!

Although this is not a guarantee that your husband will definitely do anything you ask him to, you can absolutely choose to ask your husband to help on home projects in a positive way full of honey, not vinegar.

Closeup of man's hands as he lays white subway tile for a kitchen backsplash

Things that may motivate your husband to honey-do

  • Ask him with a friendly, positive tone of voice and a smile.
  • Time how frequently you ask unless the situation is truly dire.
  • Give him some time to fit things into his schedule—if it is not an emergency. Maybe he will get to it in a few days or weeks and maybe that is okay.
  • Offer to bring him a few tall glasses of sweet tea if he has to work out in the heat.
  • Keep your amazing sense of humor that your husband loves about you so much and be flexible. These things can test a marriage, but you can choose to come out of these little problems with an even stronger relationship.
  • When he does anything you appreciate, be sure to thank him. Everyone likes to be appreciated.
  • Brag on his work to other people.
  • Offer to make his favorite meal or take him to his favorite restaurant to thank him for his hard work or thank him in some other tangible way he would appreciate greatly.
  • Tell him that he’s the best handyman and husband ever when he takes care of things and does a great job.

What if he just doesn’t have the time, ability, or motivation to take care of your honey-do list?

Of course, if your husband is overwhelmed, not sure what to do, too busy, too frustrated, or too stressed, you can always sweetly ask if maybe it would be less stressful for him and less time-consuming if you call a handyman service.

Definitely don’t say it is because he can’t do it. He probably could. But he may appreciate being able to save his own free time and stress level by calling a reliable handyman.

That way you both get what you want.

You get the home repairs you need and he doesn’t have to spend all his weekends for months tied up with projects. Then you have a lot more time to enjoy each other and the things that matter most to you in life. Like your relationship.

Get Started

If you’re ready to get started on your project, or you’d just like to ask a few questions, we’d love to hear from you at Punch List Pros. Give us a call today, and we can set up an in-home estimate. We look forward to hearing from you!

Man with ladder, man with drill and man carrying a box of supplies walking