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Homeownership tips from consumer reports that will save you money


Homeownership tips from consumer reports that will save you money

Consumer Reports is a non-profit organization that has an independent and practical influence on corporate and business world. The organization analyzes over 4,000 products each year. They consider feedback from their consumers and provides true ratings and reviews. They also share many informative ideas to help consumers about how to manage their hard-earned money.

Here are 9 top homeownership tips homeowners that I would like to share from “Consumer Reports”

a) Tips for home buying and selling

For buyers:

1. Clean up your credit

If you can make your credit reports accurate, clean up bad items from it, the home buying process is likely to go like a charm.

2. Shop for mortgages

You can find a list of lenders from online websites, such as Bankrate and HSH. Also, you can search several local credit unions from the websites like culookup.com.

3. Get pre-approved

Getting pre-approved means you already have been approved and guaranteed to be granted the loan as soon as you apply for it. The lender will decide how much he can lend you.

It’s much better option than the pre-qualification process, where a lender provides you with the idea of what you can afford. You must clarify the whole process from the lender; so make sure to ask every point that you can’t understand.

For sellers:

1. Fix the house

Before adding your home into local listing, arrange an inspection for roof damage, termites, and other trivial issues. Make sure you collect all the certificates regarding the renovation and maintenance job, so that you can produce it to the prospective buyers if required.

2. Consider squeaky clean

Wash rugs, replace burnt-out light bulbs, change broken switches and outlets, and get rid off pet odors. Your house should be as good as new when a buyer visits your place.

3. Take images and post

A recent survey by Zillow explained that listings with less than 9 good images were 20% less likely to sell within 60 days than those with 22 to 27 images. You can add more images, but according to that survey, it won't help much.

b) Tips on homeownership

1. Don’t hesitate on major repairs

There are certain home repair and renovation work which should be your first priority.

Leaky roofs, foundation cracks, and mildew are a few important issues that may damage your home and you must take care of these issue right away. Otherwise, these issues can snowball into health hazards and major property repair costs.

You also need to get a proper home inspection at the time you decide to purchase a house. You must avoid accepting someone else’s damaged property. The home inspector might charge you $200 or more on an average, but it is worth it.

2. Select homeowners insurance carefully

Being a homebuyer, if you are looking for a decent insurance coverage for your home, you must check out the basic exceptions that may not come under the usual coverage. Insurance providers may have different policies for events like earthquakes, flood, or any other natural disasters. So, you must opt for additional policies separately to get more coverage based on the probability of the potential natural disasters in your area.

If you’re an existing homeowner and haven’t reviewed your insurance policies for a long time, make sure that your policy rate is relatively cheaper and the coverage is sufficient for your house. Shop for cheap insurance policies each year to save money, along with getting proper protection for any sudden disaster strike.

3. Stay alert to cut off your energy costs

There are a few simple moves you can plan to get your utility bills reduced; rinsing off the dishes before putting them into the dishwasher may decrease your wash time and also lower the power consumption.

You should be mindful about water usage as well. If you waste too much, your water bill will be higher than usual.

You should also check out any plug leaks around doors and electrical outlets in your house. These faulty outlets and plugs may cause power leaks that can decrease your heating or cooling system functionality. As a result, you may need to overuse it to get the desired temperature. The more you use, the more utility bills will increase.

You may need to replace your light bulbs with energy-saving compact fluorescent bulbs. For each bulb, you can save near about $56.
Use cold water detergents and cycles, as much as possible, when you’re doing your laundry. Likewise, you can skip rinsing dishes before putting them in the dishwasher in case you are using the new machines that can manage the food waste; doing so, you t can save nearly 5,000 gallons of water per year.

You can also increase the usage of the microwave. It’ll use less energy rather than a conventional oven.
Turn the heater down by 5 to 10 degrees at night or at the time you're going outside. Turn the ceiling fan off while using air conditioner. That can cut your energy bills by as much as 20%.

Buying a home is not easy, but being a homeowner practically is much more tougher than it looks. But if you follow these homeownership tips carefully, I believe owning a dream home will be great for you.

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