Buying a new home is an exciting step forward in achieving financial freedom, but it also comes with its share of responsibility. If you don’t take care of your home, it won’t last and you’ll lose money on your investment. As soon as you take ownership of your new home, there are several things you should do to protect it and keep it in good condition.
Address Your Home Security Needs
As soon as you buy a new home, you should address security issues to ensure your family will be safe on the property. Doing something as basic as changing all of the locks will help you restrict access to the home. You’ll want to make sure you know exactly who has a key to your front and back door. Don’t forget to change the locks on your garage doors as well.
After changing the locks, think about adding a security monitoring system. You can find home security systems that use smart technology in conjunction with cameras, lights, and motion sensors to deter and detect criminal activity. Whether a home invasion or a medical emergency occurs, subscribing to a 24-hour monitoring system will ensure help arrives quickly.
Look Over Your Home Warranty
In the modern real estate market, many sellers offer a home warranty as a way to entice buyers to make an offer. Even if your home didn’t come with a warranty, you should consider buying one for the financial security it provides. Your home warranty may cover the costs of repairing or replacing appliances, addressing electrical and plumbing issues or helping you get HVAC repairs at a lower cost.
Be sure to read through your home warranty policy to see exactly what it covers. Knowing how you’re protected will save you from spending more money than necessary on repairs. If you’re buying your own warranty, be sure to shop around. You’ll want to obtain a warranty that covers the most expensive items and those things that are more likely to develop costly issues.
Review Your Home Inspection Report
Every home lender requires residential inspections before they will allow a borrower to commit to a home purchase. This is because a home inspection helps identify big issues with a property that could affect its value.
You can use the inspection report even after you complete the closing on your new home. This report will serve as a guide by telling you what must be repaired immediately and what issues you should prepare to address in the future. By keeping this report and following it, you can avoid unpleasant surprises in your new home.
Address Fire Safety Concerns
It’s impossible to predict when a house fire will occur so you should prepare for this possibility as soon as you move into your new home. This starts with installing smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors throughout your home. In particular, place detectors in areas where a fire is more likely to start. It can be worthwhile to install a sprinkler system as well.
In addition to reducing fire damage, a sprinkler system can get you a discount on your homeowner’s insurance coverage. Be sure to create a plan for reacting to a fire to ensure everyone in your home knows what to do in case of a fire. The plan should include escape routes and safe meeting places since this will help you make sure everyone escapes a fire.
Make a List of Maintenance Issues
Certain things will need attention regularly. For instance, you should have your roof inspected at least once every 12 months. Every six months, your HVAC system should receive a tune-up.
Keep track of the preventative maintenance your home will need throughout each year. Save these important issues in your phone’s calendar and set alarms for them to keep from forgetting to get the maintenance done. If you let these things go, you’ll end up spending much more on repairs and utility usage.
Starting with good home maintenance practices as soon as you move into your new home will help you avoid many common and costly problems. As a part of this process, be sure to maintain a savings account with cash that you’ll only access for household emergencies. This will save you from having to borrow to cover these big-ticket repairs.
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