How to Avoid Those First-Time Homeowner Mistakes

Becoming a first-time homeowner is an exciting milestone in life. However, it can come with quite a few learning curves. Here are some helpful tips to make your homeownership journey a little easier.

  1. Knowing Who to Call For Your Home Repairs

According to experts, the most common mistake by first-time homebuyers is hiring the wrong repair professional While you may think this isn’t a big deal, this mistake could end up costing you thousands of extra dollars.

A good way to avoid a misstep is by doing some research before you hire any professional. First, try to get a better understanding of what’s wrong so you can better explain the problem to your prospective fixers and eliminate any potential confusion or miscommunication about the necessary work. This will also help ensure the proper person is being hired for the job.

Also, don’t forget to ask about ALL potential costs with the repair, including required “trip charges” and minimum fees. You don’t want to be surprised by a bill you weren’t expecting, and your budget will thank you!

2. Read the Reviews

If a restaurant gets consistent poor reviews, you’d probably skip a visit. So why should your home repairs be any different? Be sure to spend time during your initial research to read reviews of potential contractors before they step foot in your home. Even better, start by asking trustworthy family and friends, or even a new neighbor, for their recommendations.

3. Let’s Talk Remodeling

Like many new homeowners, you probably have scrapbooks or digital files full of images that inspire the vison of your dream kitchen or living room. But unless the space is unlivable, take a breath and enjoy your new home for a while before spending money on expensive remodels. First, get a taste for your living space and be sure you have some savings built up for any unexpected repairs that may pop up. That doesn’t mean you can’t decorate and remodel to your heart’s content. Check out our blog Budget-Friendly DIY Projects for New Homeowners for some great ideas of how to easily add some wow to your new home.

4. Don’t Forget to Winterize Your New Home

Unless you live somewhere tropical, there’s a good chance you’ll need to winterize your new home before the cold weather sets in. Missing this step can mean freezing pipes, higher heating costs, roof leaks or other home issues – all that can lead to expensive repairs and budget-killing costs. Here’s a few quick tips for getting your home ready for winter:

  • Tune Up Your Heating System – Schedule a tune-up for your furnace or heat pump to ensure that your system is clean and in good repair. Preventive maintenance will ensure your system is running at its max efficiency, plus minimize the chance that you’ll have a furnace failure during winter’s coldest days.
  • Reverse Your Ceiling Fans – Most of us think ceiling fans are there to cool us down during the summer. But hot air rises so reversing your ceiling fan will produce an updraft and push heated air from the ceiling down into the room. This will increase your heating efficiency and be especially helpful in rooms with high ceilings. Plus, it could help save a bit on your heating bill!
  • Check Your Attic & Roof Check your attic space to be sure you have enough insulation. Without it, you could have air leaks that can cause excess ice to accumulate on your roof, leading to ice dams that can result in melting water backing up and flowing into your home. Also be sure to visually inspect your roof for missing or loose shingles that may cause leaks during storms or when snow melts.
  • Turn off Outdoor Faucets – Disconnect your garden hoses and drain water from your exterior faucets and irrigation system. This is critical to avoid those pipes from freezing in winter that could cause pipes to burst as ice expands, creating the need for costly repairs. Don’t forget to turn off the shut-off valve inside your home as well that controls your outside faucets.

Congratulations on purchasing your new home! We hope you enjoy your new chapter as homeowners and that these tips come in handy.