Buying a home is one of the biggest financial decisions you will have to embark on. Luckily, there are lots of professionals such as realtors and mortgage brokers that can help you along the way. Along with endless information online that can help you make this decision less stressful. But what about after the sale has closed and you are now a homeowner? Below are a few simple but smart decisions you can make with your finances after you have closed the deal.
Once you take possession of a home, don’t forget that you take possession of all financial responsibilities that come with homeownership. It is important to put money away for an “emergency” fund. Having such a fund will make sure you are not in a financial drought later if your home requires a replacement or a repair.
If you are a first time home buyer it can be tempting to go furniture shopping right away. It may be best for most to take some time and figure out how their new budget will work and what they need most for their home. A few rooms can stand to be empty for a while and taking time to shop around with likely result in finding better deals. You can always upgrade later.
Make sure and reassess your home insurance at least every 6 months. You may find a better deal or that you have too little or not enough coverage as your home becomes more valuable. Also, you may want to make sure your life insurance policy can now over the cost of your mortgage.
Call and set up your utilities. Typically the first 12 months being a home owner are the most difficult financially. Utility companies can estimate your use each month. Budget for that amount and perhaps sign up for an equal billing plan. This will help in avoiding any “surprises.”
For safety purposes, it is a good idea to change all the locks. Although this may seem like a small purchase, it can add up quickly, depending on how many you have to replace. You have one set of keys for the house on closing, but you also have no idea how many people have a copy from the previous home owners. It’s best to be better safe than sorry!
Lastly, remember how a home impacts your life with always be evolving and changing. The best way to keep up to date on your financials, is to do a yearly review to be as cost effective as possible. This is not only true for your home but all aspects of your life.