Do you have some advice for new homeowners? That’s the question I asked friends and associates last week. Their responses ranged from chatting up the future neighbors to stashing away a rainy day fund. I’ve put a few of their nuggets of advice into a list for you here. I bet there’s probably something on the list that will ring true for you. And you won’t have to hear it from your mom!
- Recognize that things will definitely break and insurance may or may not cover it when it happens. Maintain a savings of at least $2500 to cover those expenses or insurance deductibles as they arise.
- Your house won’t look like a magazine picture right away. Plan a budget to furnish and decorate your new home over time.
- Renovating and updating an older home can be expensive. Be realistic about the cost and time involved.
- Don’t overspend on upgrades when building. You may have an appraisal issue when the home is complete.
- Look past the flow and floor plan. Be aware of construction quality while shopping for a home.
- Keep energy efficiency in mind while looking at homes. Pay particular attention to the amount of insulation and the quality of the windows. Keep in mind that glass doors and large windows are pretty but may not insulate well in subzero or scorching temps.
- While shopping for a home, pay attention to the elevation of the lot to avoid potential flooding or water erosion in the future.
- While shopping for a home count the outlets in each room to make sure they will meet your technology needs.
- Have your dad (or someone with your best interests at heart) take a close look at the house and neighborhood.
- Chat with the neighbors. They can offer a wealth of knowledge about the neighborhood, builder, and seller.
- Pay attention to the neighborhood. Look closely to see if there are kids close in age to yours. Are the yards maintained? Are people outside?
- Hire a reputable home and pest inspector. Take time to research the inspectors prior to hiring them. Do not hire an inspector that will financially gain from the reported repairs.
- Splurge and hire movers. It will be worth it.
Do you have some unsolicited advice for new homeowners out there? Chime in in the comments section below. Let’s get a conversation going.