Avoid These 4 First-Time Homeowner Mistakes

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Entering the front door for the first time as a first-time homeowner can be quite a feeling. After finalizing the deal on that new house and settling the closing costs, you deserve to bask in your achievement.

But don’t get too carried away that you make some of these rookie homeowner mistakes.

Disposing receipts

Proper documentation doesn’t end after getting a new home. As the years go by, you’ll eventually need to make repairs and improvements as the need arises. Whether it’s, fixing a door hinge, maintaining good drainage, or improving the kitchen.

Don’t just throw away the receipts and paperwork from these different services. Put all of them in a binder with transparent plastic sleeves and stow them away for safekeeping. And if you want to be extra diligent, scan or take a photo and upload them in your online drive.

Receipts, job orders, and contracts will be invaluable down the line when you decide to move on to a new house. These documents can help provide a track record of upgrades that can boost resale value.

Spending straight away on furniture


For some first-time homeowners, entering a new house with little to no furnishings can feel lacking. There may be an urge to fill up the place with tables, bookshelves, and all kinds of decorations right away.

However, it pays to be patient. There’s nothing wrong with having a lot of vacant floor space at the start. Use this time to familiarize yourself with the design and makeup of your home.

When you do that, you’ll have a better idea of what type of furnishings go well with a particular part of the house — be it the living room, kitchen, or another area. This can help you improve overall comfort and home functionality.

Investing in improvements that won’t pay off

While making improvements can help with the resale value, make sure that these upgrades will indeed result in a good return on investment. If you only plan to stay for 2 to 3 years in your new home, you should implement upgrades that don’t take 5 or more years to recoup.

Additionally, it can be easy to go through a list of long-term home improvements and then applying the ones that you personally find valuable.

However, that strategy can backfire if a potential buyer or the overall market does not value those upgrades. Be more discerning with improvements. Settle on ones that can truly add value to the home. Seek out the advice of an agent or appraiser, if you need to.

Not paying attention to the fine details of an inspection report

It’s easy to overlook small issues in an inspection report. A faulty outlet or slightly loose gutters don’t seem to require urgent action.

However, these can morph into bigger problems in the long run. And when these issues bite you in the future, you may need to spend a considerable amount of cash for emergency repairs.

So watch out for these small issues in your monthly or annual inspections. Take note which ones could be potential headaches down the line. Find contractors who can offer free estimates for repair and maintenance services — this will help you plan your expenses ahead.

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