Ten Things a First Time Home Buyer Will Need to Purchase
Whether you’re moving out of Mom & Dad’s or you’ve been an apartment dweller for years, your first house is going to require some purchases you may have never made before. Consider it a rite of passage.
If your post-closing budget is exhausted, prioritize your purchases, always placing safety ahead of aesthetics. Maybe if you’re lucky, someone will help out by presenting you with some of these as house-warming gifts.
Essentials every home owner should have:
- Keys and locks. It’s a good idea to re-key or change the door locks, even if your home is new construction. Builders sometimes give out keys to sub-contractors in the latter stages of construction and there’s no telling how many keys the previous owner may have handed out. Add a deadbolt for extra protection.
- Appliances. Not all homes come equipped with appliances. You’ll need a range, refrigerator and a washer and dryer. After all, your Laundromat days are behind you. Buy the best you can afford.
- Window treatments. If the home you purchased doesn’t have any window coverings, you’ll want to hang drapes or curtains and install blinds, shades or shutters.
- Linens and towels. It’s a new beginning, so why not splurge on new towels and bed linens to match your new décor? You’ll probably also want throw rugs for entries and maybe an area rug for the living or family room.
- Lawnmower. Unless you live in a desert or can afford to hire a lawn care crew, plan on pushing (or riding) that little gas-powered baby around once a week. Evaluate your needs: size and type of lawn, budget, etc. Do a little research at the hardware store or check Consumer Reports for comparisons. If you’re undecided but your grass is knee-high, consider trying out a used model.
- Garden tools. You might want a weed-whacker to reach the tight spaces your new lawnmower can’t get to. You’ll also need a garden hose and spray nozzle, maybe a lawn sprinkler. As long as you’re shopping in the garden department, add a shovel, rake, shears and a broom. If you really “dig” the outdoor scene, toss in a hand trowel, hoe and a wheelbarrow.
- Tools. Stock a basic tool kit for repairs, fix-ups and emergencies. The basics include a hammer, saw, pliers, screw drivers in various sizes and configurations (flathead and Phillips), wrench, staple gun, tape measure and a supply of nails and tacks.
- Winter equipment. Start with a snow shovel, unless you have money to splurge on a snow blower. You should also have an ice scraper and some sort of ice-melting product on hand. Try a non-toxic ice melt that won’t harm children or pets and won’t burn your lawn.
- Outdoor furniture. You bought a house with a yard because you want to spend time outside. When you aren’t busy mowing and gardening, relax and enjoy the fruits of your labor. Get a few chairs, a patio set complete with table and umbrella and a barbecue grill. A round Weber charcoal grill will get you started on a budget.
- A pet. You have a new home, why not give an animal a new home too? Without a landlord to answer to, you’re free to add a furry friend to your family – as long as you’re within local ordinances (some counties impose restrictions on the number of pets permissible). If all’s in order, consider adopting from a local shelter or rescue. Be sure to spay/neuter and vaccinate your new pet. You may want to fence your yard to protect your pet.
Lori Lovely is a real estate contributor for the Indianapolis real estate website of ICON Realty Partners, LLC. The website, located at www.indyhomespecialist.com, features helpful information about buying and selling homes in any market.
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