Do you get a little anxious when you think about getting your first house and becoming a new homeowner? You can take a deep breath and relax a little bit - and read on to learn about these common homeowner mistakes and what to do to avoid them! One thing to keep in mind is that you need to have patience and go one step at a time. Keep reading for more tips!
“A penny saved is a penny earned.” - Benjamin Franklin
The most common mistake new homeowners make is about insurance. Most people only get enough insurance to cover for their mortgage - which is never enough to cover the real damage to your property.
Going for the Lowest Bid
Even though the lowest bid is always an attractive option, you must double-check references every single time. It’s important to look for reviews from people who already hired the company’s service before, maybe even ask for a couple of neighbors’ recommendations. Of course, you don’t need to go for the highest bid too. Make sure to have at least three bids and do your research!
That leads us to the next big mistake:
Not Doing Your Research
If there’s one thing you should never ever do it’s hiring the first service you find! Sure, they can be the best pros around, but you must always do the research before settling for the job. When it comes to home projects, it’s better to be safe than sorry (which we can translate here as: it’s better to take some extra time researching, than to end up with a lousy service).
Before hiring, you need to:
- Research, research, research
- Find the perfect pro from homeyou
- Ask the contractors specific questions (and demand clear answers)
Going for Big Changes too Soon
I know how excited everyone gets when acquiring a new house - all the projects and expectations for a new life are right on the edge. But you need to remember you’ll be living there for a long time, so there’s no need to rush anything! Start with the smaller things around and plan all the desired projects for the long haul.
One more thing:
Don’t go running on a furnishing spree! First, get to know your space and see what’s working and what’s not. You may need that whole first year to actually decide on what to invest in. And that also goes for decorating. You may feel more inspired to make your house a home with some decor ideas, but go easy and think thoroughly about which colors to paint the walls and especially which furniture to buy.
Throwing Away Receipts
It’s not like you need to keep every receipt forever, just as long as you might need it. That is, if you bought something (or hired a service) that offers a guarantee, keep the receipt as long as the guarantee lasts - that could vary from 3 months to a couple of years.
Tip: You could also use the cloud storage technology and take pictures of your receipts to store them there.
Ignoring Routine Maintenance
Here’s an idea:
Use the house inspection report as your list of projects to do first! Don’t ever let the small issues accumulate because those can end up causing huge, expensive damage to your home. Make sure to always fix minor issues as soon as possible.
The good thing about these small fixes is that you can DIY safely almost every time, but you know, get a quote from a professional either way. I’ll say it once again: when it comes to house issues, it’s always and I really do mean ALWAYS better to be safe than sorry.
Remember: If you plan on fixing anything electrical yourself, ALWAYS TURN OFF THE POWER. Of course, it’s always safer to have an electrician fix anything electrical. So if you’re not an electrician, please call one.
Fire and Water Damage Precautions
It’s probably pretty obvious to you that you should make sure your home has the appropriate fire precaution. That means:
- Checking if ALL fire alarms are working
- Purchasing fire extinguishers for each level of the home + an extra one for the garage
- Checking for possible flammable materials that you can get rid of
As for water damage, even the smallest leaking pipe can create a big disaster. This also goes for what we were talking about before, about keeping an eye out for the small stuff during routine maintenance.
There’s still more:
It’s very common for the washer and dryer to cause water damage, so give that some special attention too.
Ignoring The Outdoors
Depending on the time of the year you bought your house, you may not be so tempted to pay attention to outdoor projects (hello, winter). But it’s important to give your outdoor space proper care as well. Both the front yard and backyard could use a clean up, and some landscaping planning!
DIYing Stuff You Don’t Actually Know
Unless you’re actually a professional contractor, we’d never recommend you to try a DIY project for something big in the house. No matter how much you read about it, there may be something that’s not in the tutorials and that could make your house worse. Always get a pro to at least inspect the issue and then you can decide if it’s a DIY project or if it needs a professional service.
You’ll definitely need tools for your house at one point! Here are the things you’ll probably use most frequently:
I can tell you that these are totally worth their price for the best quality possible. You’re looking for something that’s good to use and durable, and those are usually not the cheapest options (though you could try your luck with some sales from time to time).
The tip is: Buy used, quality-brand tools online! Of course, find reliable sources and always ask for photos before purchasing, but that’s usually a safe path to follow.
Hope this article helped you understand better the home owning experience! Get a free quote for your home inspection today!
More from homeyou:
- A 5 Point Guide to Creating a Happier Home
- 5 Small Changes That Will Make a Big Difference in Your Home
- The 5 Most Beneficial Home Renovations