9 Helpful Tips For Every Part of Homeownership

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Home ownership is exciting, motivating, and comes with experiencing a wide range of emotions. As experienced home builders, we know how the process of moving into a new home can come with a lot of questions. We’re here to help with our most helpful tips.

Simple Scheduled Maintenance

Preparing a simple schedule for maintenance in your home can really help reduce any stress about staying on top of things. It’s a bit like owning a car: Those reminders about changing filters and checking for wear also work very well in your house.

Setting up an organized checklist is the best way to keep up with the basic chores that will maintain your home’s value and your own peace of mind. You’ll never miss a battery check, gutter cleaning, or hot water tank flush – we recommend taking time at the very beginning to get your schedule on a calendar.

Warranty & Insurance

Home warranties and insurance aren’t the same things – and you should have both.

Your mortgage broker will require that you have proper home insurance to protect everyone’s investment – and it’s probably rolled into your mortgage payment. Shop around, ask questions, and you can probably get quite competitive quotes.

Your home warranty can work well with your insurance – covering the issues that might not be covered by your policy. Generation Home Northwest provides a 1 year builder warranty and additionally supplies and extended 2 year systems and 10 year structural warranty.

Mortgages & Loans

These two words are often used interchangeably. They’ve made the dream of homeownership possible – and they can be confusing.

Before you ever begin your search for a home, get your finances in order, organize your paperwork, shop for lenders, and get approved for your loan.

There are a number of reasons to do this now: You’ll know how much home you can afford, it shows realtors and sellers that you are serious about purchasing, and also will expedite the process.

There are also some wonderful tools out there to help demystify the world of mortgages. A great place to start is our comprehensive mortgage guide.

Selling Your Old Home

If you’re selling your previous home, you may be unaware of the changes in how houses are marketed and presented to buyers – especially if you’re not working with a realtor.

You’ll need to look into the market value of your existing home, think about pricing it to sell, and address any issues that could affect the home inspection. You’ll also need to brush up on the latest home staging tips – there’s a specific look that has become the standard, and buyers are expecting it.

Take the time to learn about what buyers will look for and prepare your home for being put on the market.

One popular trend that prospective homeowners are looking for is the use of open floor plans. We’ve taken the time to outline the differences between open vs more traditional floor plans here.

Energy Efficiency

Spending a bit more at the outset can offer big savings in the future. If you’re buying a new home, look into the energy efficient options offered by the builder.

Try to add room for the most energy efficient choices when you buy your home, and you won’t regret it.

Interior Design

Interior design choices can really change with a new home. Don’t rush it. Wait until you’ve moved into the new space, and have an idea of how you’ll be using it, how the light affects the space, and if you’ll be using the same furniture.

Once you’ve been able to relax a bit in your new place, you may find that the new atmosphere will inspire some changes in your color scheme or furniture needs. It’s quite common to find that your tastes change in a new environment.

Check out our interior design guide for inspiration and design guidance.

Heating & Cooling

If you’ve never had to deal with your own heating and cooling system, the prospect can be quite intimidating. You can feel more at ease with your new home if you learn a little about how these systems work.

Once you read a bit about what’s going on in that mysterious HVAC unit, you’ll understand the need for cleaning and maintenance. A simple guide can be found here.

Exterior Maintenance

Proper exterior maintenance takes care of your whole home. When you stay on top of preventative maintenance, you can stop problems before they even start.

It’s important to perform annual checks on window seals, caulking, paint and stain, and drainage. Maintenance in these small areas can save time and money down the road.

Finding the Right Home Builder to Work With

Once you’ve been able to get some ideas for an ideal community, it’s a priority to find the right home builder. It’s a two-way street: you should interview the builder, feel comfortable with their process and experience, and trust them completely with their guidance on the process of building a home and their expertise in evaluating things such as home sites, best floorplans, and budgets.
Visit communities, check out model homes, and don’t rush the process. Your new home should be a joy, not a headache. The right builder will make all the difference.

Home ownership is one of the biggest decisions that you can make – and it should be a positive experience. There’s a lot to consider – and we hope that this guide has helped you start on your journey.

Once you’re on the road to getting your new home, being able to rely on an experienced builder can make everything much less stressful and allow you to actually enjoy the process.