You just found the home of your dreams, congratulations and welcome to homeownership! As you transition into your new home, you get to enjoy the many new freedoms that homeownership brings. Freedom from things like landlords, home decorating restrictions and paying for property that isn't yours. Instead, you get to enjoy the personalized space of your home sweet home!
To help make your transition into homeownership as smooth as possible, we've created a New Homeowner's Checklist. Be prepared for all that homeownership brings.
Setting Up Your Budget & Records
Getting your budget ready and all of your records organized will help ease your transition. Some of the records that you'll want to keep organized and safely stored include:
A property inventory of valuables and items in your home
Property records like property agreements and contracts
Financial records like an annual credit report, your annual tax return and bank statements
Personal identity records like birth certificates, citizenship papers and social security cards for you and your family members
Personal protection records like home insurance, car insurance and medical insurance information
Legal records as applicable like divorce papers, marriage certificate and will
Personal health records like medical, dental, and vision
After you collect your personal records, focus in on your financial records and create your budget. Start with figuring out how much you'll be spending each month on items like groceries, insurance, travel and if it applies, any financing payments you may have. In regards to home financing and home insurance, it is possible that both of those payments might be included in one payment if your home insurance is escrowed.
You want to make sure that you and your family are safe in your new home. To do so, check the following!
Know your fire evacuation route
Know where you will go in case of tornado
Know how to remove the windows in your home in the case of a fire
Create an emergency/disaster kit
Check all your smoke detectors
If it applies, test your home's alarm or security system
Get to Know Your Home
In case of any emergency, you'll want to locate certain key utilities in your home as soon as you move in such as your water shutoff valve, water heater, and circuit breaker.
As you settle in, make sure to do the following to keep all of your personal business in order.
Alert the post office and the IRS of your new address
Update your address for any of your billing accounts like your credit card or bank accounts
Update your address for any mailing subscriptions you have
Get a small safe or filing cabinet for storing important documents and paperwork
Although this checklist is not a comprehensive checklist for the transition into your new home, it should make the new adventure of homeownership easier! To help you as you transition, start creating your home inventory sheet so you can keep track of your valuables as you move and be prepared in case of any unexpected incidents.
This is just the beginning of your homeownership! We are here to help you with tips along the way such as home maintenance tips.