You did it! You were approved for a mortgage, the owner accepted your offer, and now the keys to your new home are yours. But that doesn’t mean all of the work is over. In a recent Reddit article people discussed their opinions on the best steps to take after buying your first home. We went through it, grabbed what we thought were the best tips (and ones we suggest our clients ourselves) and put them together here:
1. Change the locks on the doors and reset the garage door code/opener. Spare keys may have been made over the years and you don’t know who has a copy.
2. Go to a hardware store’s classes on home maintenance. You can find home-depot’s schedule here.
3. Hold off on making expensive purchases. Give yourself some time to adjust to your house/insurance payment. Find out what your utilities will be costing you over the first year.
4. Take 15 minutes and label your fusebox. Turn everything in the house on and then, one by one, figure out what each fuse is connected to. Then label it. This will save you a ton of time in the future.
5. Take a photo from the front gate/entrance, frame it. Years later when you have made changes or are planning to move, look back at that humble beginning and realize that for all your failings, all your stress, all that hard work, you really have come a long way.
6. Make a physical or online logbook of information that you are going to need someday but will have forgotten by then. Things to include:
• Contact information for utilities (electric, gas, network, water)
• Names and numbers of contractors used (plumbers, electricians, etc) and records of work done: type, date, cost
• Information about how to shut off water and gas in emergencies
• Model and serial number of major appliances (fridge, washer, dryer), along with date purchased and any warranty information
• Schedule for trash and recycling pickup
• Information about any relevant homeowner’s association, including contacts and rules
• Contact information for mortgage, insurance company and local tax authority
• Type, date and value of any home renovations that might affect basis when house is sold, e.g. new carpet, energy efficiency improvements
7. If the floors need to be redone, do it now before you move furniture in. It will be easier to re-do the floor without moving furniture and you’ll appreciate how the floor looks when you’re done.
8. Check all of your smoke/CO detectors. Buy additional ones if needed and make sure you buy a fire extinguisher. You don’t want to wait until you need it.
9. If you’re fixing up, do the landscaping first. You can plant small trees and shrubs outside and by the time you’re done with the inside, your tiny shrubs and trees will be big and beautiful.
Do you have a tip that didn’t make our list for first time buyers? Leave a comment below and let us know!
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