Advice for New Homeowners | Maintenance, Money-Savers, and More
Buying your first home is beyond exciting! It’s very easy to get swept up in the process between searching for the right prospects, viewing each one, submitting your offer, getting pre-approvals and more. Once you get beyond the initial excitement and planning, the mortgage process and the closing will come next. As you’re processing all that goes into finalizing the sale, no one can blame you for forgetting to keep up with some of the other things that go into homeownership. Some of the advice for new homeowners below won’t apply to when you first move in, but will be things you’ll want to stay on top of within your first 1-2 years living in your new home.
The best advice for new homeowners is to make a list of the essentials – a maintenance schedule with reminders for things that need to be checked monthly, quarterly or annually for example. You can check out the Home Maintenance Checklist by HSH for inspiration. We highly recommend going to YouTube or TikTok for really helpful home maintenance and repair videos, as there are some fantastic creators sharing advice on these platforms. Below we’ve included a sample checklist for monthly maintenance as an example:
- Check your air filters – There are a lot of different types of filters available on the market, and we recommend following the guidelines for the brand that you have. Some will need to be replaced every 30 days, 60 days, or even 90 days. You can also get smart filters which sync up with an app on your phone for reminders and filter life status.
- Clean your dishwasher filter – Did you know dishwashers have filters? Some of these home maintenance tasks are very helpful for learning about how to properly take care of our appliances. Oftentimes we’ll be used to using these appliances our whole lives without issues, but not knowing the ins and outs of properly maintaining them.
- Test smoke and carbon monoxide detectors – This one is self explanatory. Definitely a high priority!
- Clean range hood filters – We all know how much fun it is keeping ovens clean! Don’t forget to pay special attention to the range hood area to reduce fire risk and any stinky smells over time. Use an appropriate cleaner that can effectively cut through the grease and grime.
How do you feel about shopping for school supplies? Our next recommendation is to grab a nicely sized binder and even sheet protectors if you like. This will be your designated place for important house documents. The Gold Hive has an excellent breakdown of how to organize your paperwork. They noted: “I like to think of this binder as something I can give to the future homeowner. They’ll have all the info they need about appliances and repairs done while the home was ours. And even if we don’t sell anytime soon, I get to enjoy it as a house scrapbook in the meantime!”
Our final recommendation to you is always be on the hunt for ways to save money. Homeownership involves a lot of spending, and it’s wise to try and cut costs when you can in order to save for the necessary improvements you will want to tackle over time. We’ve included a few ideas from The Simple Dollar’s list below to get you started:
- Install and use a programmable thermostat – A programmable thermostat can make life easy in terms of programming a schedule for your home and controlling the temperatures while you’re away.
- Use LED light bulbs – This is a quick and easy way to shave a few bucks off of your electric bill.
- Adjust your hot water heater – Check the default temperature on your water heater and aim for about 120 degrees to take advantage of extra savings without sacrificing hot showers.
- Find drafts in your home and seal them up – Fixing small air leaks in your home will help your HVAC system run more efficiently.
If you have any advice for new homeowners that you’d like to share, we would love to hear about it on social media. You can find UCBR on the following: Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. We hope the above was helpful and wish you all the best in your new home. Cheers!