While it’s not super-common for teenagers to buy their own home, it certainly happens. Othertimes, homes are inherited when a loved one like a parent passes away. It’s never easy to deal with, especially for someone who is still a teen. Whatever the reason is, if you’re stepping up as a homeowner, here are some things you need to keep in mind. These tips will range from simple things to do for maintenance and to keep your home in good shape, to tips on how to prepare for and handle very serious issues.
Keep the Pipes Warm
If you live in a colder climate, having your water pipes freeze can be devastating. It can cause the pipes to expand and burst. Before winter, make sure you turn off any outside taps and the lines that lead to them. If you’re going away on vacation during the winter, it’s good to have a friend or family member who can stop by, run the furnace for a while, make sure everything’s okay. This can save you from having to file an insurance claim for your home.
In an emergency, if you’re home, like if your furnace breaks on Friday night and nobody can come out to help until Monday morning, you may want to consider leaving some taps running. This can prevent them from freezing, keeping them useable until you get the heat back on. The same goes for a power outage. It will hurt a bit on your next water bill, but not nearly as bad as having burst pipes.
Insurance & Dealing With a Home Insurance Adjuster
Without proper insurance coverage, you can lose it all. If you end up needing to file a home insurance claim, you’ll be dealing with an adjuster. Knowing what their job is, their objectives, and how the whole process works will make it easier for you to navigate and to get a favorable result for yourself. Home insurance adjuster tips can help you prepare for what to expect.
A home adjuster works for the insurance company, and an insurance company usually isn’t super fond of having to pay out a big claim, but if you understand your rights and how to navigate, you can make sure you’re being treated fairly. At the end of the day, the adjuster is there to do their job and most of them aren’t going to try to cheat you – they’re going to try to play by the book and use it to their advantage so if you don’t know the book, they have a big advantage over you.
Buy Below Your Means
Depending on the housing market and where prices are at, it can be very tempting to buy a little bit above your means under the assumption that you’ll continue in your current career and your income will continue to grow – but if you don’t have an ample emergency fund, this could be a costly mistake.
If housing markets take a dip, you lose equity and if the economy slows down and your work situation changes, you can end up having to sell at a loss if you aren’t able to meet your mortgage payments.
Just because the bank approves you for a certain mortgage, that doesn’t mean it’s wise to spend it all. Keep some cash aside for repairs and upgrades and renovations, and any other unexpected things that will inevitably end up costing you more than you originally expect.
Make sure you’re also budgeting in things like home insurance, utilities, repairs, and more.
Make the Most of It
Get a BBQ, grow a few plants outdoors, hang a hammock, paint your walls, buy a nice sound system… there are a lot of things that you can do as a homeowner that you can’t enjoy as a renter. If you come into homeownership at a younger age, you might not realize some of the downfalls of renting or fully appreciate all of the freedoms you have. Not being woken up by doors slamming in the middle of the night or neighbors fighting is always a plus!