Owning your first home is an exciting moment. However it’s easy to get swept up in all the excitement and some first-time homeowners lose their heads and make mistakes that can jeopardize everything they’ve worked so hard to earn.
1. Don’t overspend on furniture and remodelling
Money is tight for most first-time homeowners, not only are their savings depleted, their monthly expenses are often higher as well. This is due to the new expenses that come with home ownership, such as water and electricity bills, and home insurance.
Everyone wants to personalise a new home and upgrade what may have been temporary apartment furniture for something nicer, but don’t go on a massive spending spree to improve everything all at once. Give yourself time to adjust to the expenses of home ownership and rebuild your savings.
2. Don’t ignore important maintenance items
One of the new expenses that come with home ownership is making repairs. There is no landlord to call if your roof is leaking or your toilet is overflowing. You should restraint from purchasing the non-essentials, but on the other hand you shouldn’t neglect any problem that puts you in danger or could get worse over time, turning a relatively small problem into a much larger and costlier one.
3. Hire qualified contractors
Don’t try to save money by making improvements and repairs yourself that you aren’t qualified to make. This may seem to contradict the first point slightly, but it really doesn’t. Your home is both the place where you live and an investment, and it deserves the same level of care and attention you would give to anything else you value highly. There’s nothing wrong with painting the walls yourself, but if there’s no wiring for an electric opener in your garage you need to prioritise things that will help you to keep your home in top condition and avoid injuring yourself.
4. Don’t confuse a repair with an improvement
Not all home expenses are treated equally for the purpose of determining your home’s basis. Don’t trick yourself into thinking its ok to spend money on something because it’s a necessary “repair” when in truth it’s really a fun improvement. That isn’t good for your finances.