You have worked for a long time to make your dream of buying a home turn into a reality. From the saving to the packing, to choosing the perfect place! There are a few things seasoned homeowners know about the joys and travails of homeownership that you might not yet know. Whether you’re moving from an apartment into your first home, or handling repairs on your own for the first time. These tips will give you some important things to think about as you start this new chapter!
- Home Maintenance > Home Repairs: Coming from a rental situation, it’s easy to not notice the constant maintenance that goes into a home. Established homeowners know that constant maintenance to protect from environmental changes and general aging of your home are important factors to keep up with. Homeowners can learn quickly that simple maintenance prevents costly repairs down the road. It isn’t glamorous, but neither is the expense or inconvenience of dealing with major home repairs.
- Learn How to be Neighborly: Now that you are living in a neighborhood presumably surrounded by other homeowners, you may notice the dynamic is a bit different. Whereas your renter neighbors may not have cared much to say hello, homeowning neighbors have more invested in the community. This could mean they care more about local blighted properties or want to make friends. Navigating the new dynamic can feel different if you’re not used to it. Take some time to get to know your neighbors, the new community is always helpful. You never know when you might need a helping hand in an emergency, or could make some lasting new friendships.
- Know the Neighborhood Rules: Now that the home is yours, it’s exciting to realize you aren’t under the microscope of a landlord’s lease and expectations. The freedom of homeownership does sometimes come with a few restrictions. Keep in mind that your new neighborhood could have covenants that owners are expected to follow. This could have to do with renovations or home improvements all the way to your mailbox style! Save some headache and frustrating letters of correction by getting to know the bylaws or covenants in your own neighborhood.
- Prepare Your Finances: In a lot of ways, you’re likely about to save money by owning instead of renting. The long-term perks of ownership combined with the monthly savings are huge! But it’s important to prepare for the possibility of repairs and other expenses that could come up. Set aside more money than you think you’ll need in case of an emergency. It’s helpful to know that you are prepared for the unexpected and can handle whatever might be thrown your way because of your new home.
- Use the Tax Breaks: As we’re in this year’s tax season, it’s important to think about your taxes. There could be some great incentives that go along with your new home purchase. Do your research and speak with your accountant to determine what you could qualify for. Check into all the options to know where you could save some cash this year.
Buying a home is an exciting time. Keep these things in mind as you embark on your new role as a homeowner!
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