With rates staying low and propping up purchasing power and affordability, we are seeing a lot of first time homebuyers entering the marketplace. As real estate agents, we’ve made a concerted effort to walk first time buyers through the purchasing process, but it’s also important for those new homeowners to be prepared for the actual ownership portion of the process. With that in mind, we’ve included a few tips below for new homeowners.
- Know where all your utility shut-offs are. If there’s a leak in the plumbing system or gas appliances, it’s important to know where the utility can be shut off the offending system and get a professional technician to address the issue.
- Make sure all utilities are in your name as of the closing date and auto-pay has been set up wherever possible. If you are curious as to your utility providers, the escrow company you used should know that information. Portlandmaps.com, if you are in the City of Portland, also has said info.
- Find the periodic maintenance projects specific to your home and make sure those are addressed regularly. Some homes have gutters that need recurrent cleaning to prevent water from building up and potentially entering the crawlspace or basement. Others have siding joints that require occasional caulking to ensure they are secured against the weather. Usually, your home inspection report will have made note of these items, but inspectors can also come to a house and provide a “punch list” of items.
There are a myriad of responsibilities involved in home ownership, but this is a good start and we hope it’s helpful!