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Things New Homeowners Waste Money On

Buying a home is one of the biggest financial decisions of your life. It’s important to know what new homeowners waste money on so that you won’t.

  • Too big of a house: You can save money by buying a home that has only the space you really need and will use. Shocker, we know. Do you really need that fifth bedroom, or a formal dining room? What will you use that space for, and just how often? Keep your budget in mind- if you spend more money on a home than you really should using your given loan, it can make your mortgage and budget go all out of wack.
  • Immediately fixing up outdoor space: Before you add that outdoor kitchen, think about how often you’ll actually use it. Also, where can your budget be better spent (or saved)?
  • Yard maintenance: Paying for a yard service to come by may seem necessary and important at first (especially if you’ve never owned your own yard before), but it can be something homeowners waste money on. Even if you’ve become part of an HOA that offers it at a discounted rate, it will save you a lot of money in the long run to mow and fertilize the yard yourself.
  • Old insurance: It may help your finances to re-investigate the best type of insurance company and plan for your current needs. If you’re using the same insurance company you used for your renter’s insurance years ago, this may be especially true. An insurance company may have great prices compared with other companies on one type of insurance, but worse prices on other types.
  • Extended warranties: When you’re buying a new appliance, the salesperson will most likely attempt to sell you one of these. However, the likelihood of an appliance breaking down within the extended warranty period is low, and if it did happen then it would cost the same or less to fix it. It’s better to spend nothing and to have the slight possibility of paying something, than to spend some and have the slight possibility of the thing breaking.
  • Too much stuff: Especially if you’re moving from a smaller space to a bigger one, it may seem necessary and fun to want to fill the extra space. However, if you wait a bit to figure out your budget and style of decor you want, it will be worth it in the long run. Usually the things that are bought “just to have” are those things you’ll rarely use, and won’t make a difference to have in the long run. In other words, if you didn’t buy it out of need, then you don’t actually need it.
  • Buying a house with a swimming pool: Unless you are really enthusiastic about owning one, and willing to shell out maintenance money for it (for cleaning, water, chemicals, and possibly heating), owning a pool can eat up money you could use otherwise. If you know you’ll spend a lot of time enjoying it, then go for it. However, if you already know that it’s something that sounds better in theory than actuality, then avoid it.
  • Having improperly insulated windows: You’ll save money in the long run to have a home energy audit, and to fix those windows that are inefficient in insulation. Homeowners waste money frequently on heat and air that doesn’t even stick around in their house.

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