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5 Things Every Homeowner Needs to Know

for Bradenton, Sarasota, Lakewood Ranch and Beyond

Aug 22, 2016

There’s no getting around it—being a homeowner can be difficult. Prior to buying your home, it’s likely that you lived in rental properties where all you had to worry about is patching up nail holes and leaving a clean space when you move. Any problems with appliances and general maintenance was handled by the owner or property manager. Once you sign those papers to purchase your home, you take on not only the responsibility of paying a mortgage, but also managing and maintaining every element of your new home and property.

While this may seem exciting at first, it can become overwhelming when your basement starts leaking or your furnace breaks just a month after moving in. Some problems with your home are unavoidable, but, thankfully, there are things you can do to protect this valuable asset.

1. Purchase Home Insurance

No other preventative or protective measure you can take with your home is anywhere near as important as having home insurance. Home insurance covers you in the event that a disaster destroys or causes damage to your home. This insurance also protects you if someone is injured while on your property.

Having home insurance is a guarantee that you will never be alone when facing problems with your home, large or small. With insurance, you can rest assured knowing that you have a way to repair damage to your home and even the means to pay for temporary housing if necessary. Before you sign the papers taking ownership of your home, you should consult with an insurance agent to make sure you are protected from day one.

2. Clean and Maintain Your Chimney

The chimney is one element in a home that is often neglected and overlooked when it should be cared for with just as much diligence as you care for any other part of your home. Prior to using your chimney for the first time, you should call a chimney sweep to inspect the structure to be sure there is no damage that needs repair and that there is no major blockage that could cause a problem.

Some homeowners think of the chimney as a part of the home that basically maintains itself—this couldn’t be further from the truth. If debris or damage are present within the flue, a fire can easily start, causing catastrophic damage to your home.

3. Use a Professional for Renovations

It’s likely you’ll want to make some changes and renovations in your new (to you) home, especially if it was built decades ago. While the cost of doing these renovations yourself may seem appealing enough to forego the cost of a general contractor, don’t. Always consult a professional before making any structural changes to your home to be sure they’re done properly—the extra cost of hiring a professional is well worth the peace of mind you have knowing your home is safe and structurally sound.

4. Caulking and Weather Stripping

When purchasing an older home, consider installing or replacing the caulking and weather stripping around any doors and windows. Making sure they are properly sealed will help decrease any unwanted exchange of air between the interior and exterior of your home. Eliminating this exchange will in turn help decrease your utility bills, allowing the air within your home to maintain the proper temperature.

5. Secure Your Home for Vacation

Aside from packing your bags and arranging for necessary pet care, there are some precautions prior to vacation that will make your home less of a target for burglars. In addition to locking doors and windows, secure the manual lock on your garage door and put padlocks on any gates around your home. Store all of your belongings within your home or garage to make sure they’re secure in the event of a storm, and also less likely to be stolen.

Ask a neighbor to pull flyers off of your door or front porch, gather your mail, pick up your newspaper, and pull your trash cans in from the street. Leave your front lights on, and consider leaving some interior lights on also. The key is to give the impression that someone is home in hopes of decreasing the chances of your home being targeted by anyone with ill intentions.

Contact Us To Learn More

At Bradenton Insurance, we have the resources available to help you keep your home and your family safe with the right amount of insurance

Contact us for a free quote for home insurance today!

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