Five tips for moving into your first home

Buying your first home after being a renter brings both challenges and exciting possibilities. So how do you transition to being a homeowner and what opportunities does this new ownership present?

Try these top five tips to help make this transition as hassle free as possible.

Make major changes prior to moving in

It’s not always possible, but try to do any major changes or remodelling before you move in. Taking care of as many big alterations as you can prior to moving in will save you a lot of hassle and stress.

Living on a renovation site is very disruptive. It can be a logistical challenge to shift all your furniture when laying new floors or manoeuvre your way around tools and equipment just to get to your bedroom, and it’s much easier to clean up floors and walls than furniture and fabrics.

Address all the major structural repairs and upgrades such as roofing, wiring and water first. Next, tackle long-term pay-off items like windows, insulation, doors and appliances such as airconditioning and heating. Then you can move on to cosmetic items. For first homebuyers, skip the major ‘want’ renovations at first and focus more on what you need.

Deep clean

Take advantage of your empty abode to give it a deep clean. Cleaning the floors, windows, bathrooms and kitchens will be easy, as you’ll have unhindered access to everything. No rugs or furniture to move around, curtains to take down, or dishes and food to remove from the cupboards and freezer. This will make a huge difference when you finally do get in and will make the house look incredible.

If you are aren’t able to do the cleaning prior to unloading your furniture, hire a cleaning service. It will be money well spent.

Start saving

This may not be what you want to hear after you’ve just spent the last few years saving for your house deposit but the best tip is to start putting money away whenever you can, as soon as possible. Always be mindful of potential repairs – owning your own home means these are solely your responsibility. Having money put aside for last-minute emergencies will make the financial blow a little easier, especially if there are a couple of repairs to be done at once.

Know your DIY limitations. If you haven’t done it before, start small or assess the upfront cost to call in an expert. Having a list of professionals to call can prove to be a lifesaver when repairs are required, saving you time and costly mistakes.

Filling space

Now that you have your own home, you may have a few extra rooms to fill. So what do you do with all this newly acquired space? Start with an overall vision, and then patiently make that vision a reality.

Don’t try to spread your furniture out across all the rooms. Use what you have to completely equip select rooms, and slowly furnish your unfinished rooms as you find the right pieces.

Enjoy!

If you can’t organise major changes to be done before you move in, or if repairing and replacing appliances isn’t in your budget, don’t stress. You have many years ahead to work on the house and turn it into your dream home.

Article supplied by Golan Flamm of Hodges Caulfield.