75% of Americans say buying a new home is their priority. Did you take the plunge and buy a new home? Congratulations! Buying your first home is one of the most exciting aspects of your life.
But if this is your first time becoming a homeowner, you have many responsibilities. All of the projects, repairs, and financial aspects of owning a home can quickly catch up and overwhelm you.
Don’t worry, there are ways to make homeownership easy. If you just moved in, be prepared for what’s about to come. Here are 5 tips that all new homeowners should know.
1. Know Your House Before Making Changes or Repairs
While you chose your current home because of the many positives, there’s probably a change or two you would like to make. However, don’t make those changes immediately.
Wait at least a year or two making any upgrades or renovations. That’s because your wants and needs may change over time. In addition, your house could need more urgent work that you should budget for.
2. When You Do Make Those Changes, Do One Project at a Time
Let’s say you lived in your house for a year and you still want to make the same changes. Before you get to work, organize your projects and focus on one at a time. This way, you’re able to complete each project and you don’t feel rushed.
3. Get to Know Your Neighborhood and Neighbors
When you first move in, take the next few days to visit each neighbor. Introduce yourself and inform them you just moved in.
Exchange contact information. If you’re new to the area, ask for their advice about jobs, schools, places to go, where to eat, and other necessities.
It’s always refreshing knowing you have the support from neighbors. You’ll also learn what your neighbors are like and what the people in the area are like if you’re new to the city.
4. Always Have Documents Handy
You probably already have plenty of documents, such as your mortgage and insurance papers.
As you continue living in your home, these documents will only increase, such as repair receipts. Keep a binder or folder filled with documents pertaining to your home.
Why should you do this? There will come a time when you will need them.
For example, let’s say your house was damaged in a storm and you need access to your homeowner’s insurance. Or, you want to sell your home and your realtor requires paperwork proving repairs or renovations.
5. Know All of the Costs of the Home
Unfortunately, your mortgage payments aren’t the only expense to expect. First, many new homeowners are shocked by their property taxes. Research the average taxes in your area and budget that into your homeownership costs.
Next, you’ll also have to pay for maintenance, whether this is your weekly lawn service or major projects such as roof maintenance. Over time, you’ll also want to renovate your home, which can eat up your monthly budget.
Time to Become Great New Homeowners!
While owning your first home is exciting, new homeowners don’t always expect the small financial obligations and responsibilities of homeownership. Remember these tips and become the best homeowner ever!
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