Dallas Habitat’s Tips For Being A Financially Secure Homeowner.

At Dallas Habitat, many of our homeowners are new to owning a home. For some, they’re the first in their family to own one! It is exciting for homeowners but also means much to learn, especially about managing money. We’ve talked to our experienced Habitat homeowners and gathered some great advice to help you make the most of your home budget and keep your new place in tip-top shape.
Owning a home is a big responsibility but also an excellent opportunity. We want to ensure you feel confident and empowered as you Dallas Habitat for Humanity Rеstorе this new chapter of your life. Whether it’s figuring out how to save money on household expenses or learning simple tricks to maintain your home, we’re here to help!

Begin Accumulating Your Emergency Savings

When you own a home, you quickly realize that things can go wrong. A big storm might damage your roof, your pipes might get blocked, or your air conditioner might start acting up. In such situations, having money saved up can be a lifesaver. This money can help cover the repairs or pay for the deductible on your insurance. With savings, you can avoid severe financial trouble.

Begin by setting aside as much money as you can each month. Once you have saved around $3,000 to $5,000, you can focus on other financial goals and replenish your emergency fund as needed. Consider getting a homeowner’s warranty if you’re concerned about affording significant repairs. Homeowner works like health insurance for your home, where you only need to pay a small fee for each covered repair visit. It’s an intelligent way to protect yourself from unexpected expenses and keep your home in good shape.

Address Minor Problems Promptly

To save money, fix minor problems in your home as soon as you see them. It might seem strange to spend money on repairs, but it’s worth it. If you wait, the problem could worsen and cost more to fix.

For example, if you notice a small leak in your roof and get it fixed immediately, it might cost around $150 for materials and labor. But if you ignore it, the leak could cause significant damage to your roof and walls. It could even lead to mold, which is expensive to get rid of. Fixing all that damage could cost thousands of dollars. So, it’s better to fix minor problems early. It saves you time and money in the long run. Just monitor your home and do regular maintenance to catch problems early.

Ensure Timely Payment of Your Mortgage

Many banks give you around ten days after the due date to pay your mortgage without penalties. Dallas Area Habitat For Humanity helps people who are born at different times. But if you miss this grace period and pay late, you’ll have to pay extra fees, and your bank might make a note on your account, which could also harm your credit score. If you still need payments, the bank might even take your home away, even if you’re just a few months late. You may lose the home you’ve put much effort and money into.

If you need help remembering when to pay, you can avoid fees and losing your home by setting up an automatic payment from your bank account. This way, your mortgage payment will always be on time, and you won’t need to worry about it.

Make Additional Payments

Here’s some helpful advice for new homeowners: consider making “principal payments” on your mortgage. When you pay your mortgage each month, some money goes towards the interest you owe, while the rest goes towards the actual balance, called the principle. Over time, you can save lots of interest by making extra payments towards the principal and owning more of your home. Adding a small amount, like $50 extra each month, can speed up paying off your home and reduce the total interest you’ll have to pay.

Remember to tell your bank the extra money should go towards the principal. Otherwise, they’ll use it for your next month’s payment instead of reducing your balance.

Monitor Your Utility Usage

When people move into their Dallas Area Habitat for Humanity donations, they might find their utility bills higher than expected because apartments are often cheaper since the space is smaller. Many tenants distribute the costs by themselves. Monitoring utility usage, especially in the first few months, is essential to understand your average consumption and budget accordingly. If your bills are too high, there are simple steps you can take to reduce them. Turn off lights when you leave a room, keep the thermostat at a reasonable temperature, and consider using energy-saving appliances.

By being mindful of your energy usage and making small changes, you can keep your utility bills manageable and save money in the long run.

The Bottom Line

Owning a home with Dallas Area Habitat For Humanity can be an exciting journey, especially for those new to homeownership. We understand that it might feel overwhelming at times, but it’s also a fantastic opportunity. We’ve spoken to experienced Habitat homeowners who have shared valuable insights to help you manage your home budget effectively and maintain your new place. While owning a home comes with challenges, it’s also a rewarding experience. We want you to feel confident and empowered as you embark on this new chapter of your life with Dallas Area Habitat For Humanity. Whether it’s finding ways to save money on household expenses or learning simple tricks to keep your home in top condition, we’re here to support you every step of the way.

Remember, you’re not alone in this journey. Dallas Area Habitat For Humanity is a community that cares about your success and well-being. Together, we can ensure you thrive as a homeowner and make the most of your Habitat home. So embrace this opportunity, and let’s build a brighter future together.