It’s never too late to make a resolution. We can do it any time of year, but the new year just lends itself to setting goals for the next 12 months. It’s a great idea to write down your resolutions and refer to them every few weeks, this helps to keep yourself accountable. Also, don’t just set a resolution, but include an action plan to achieve it. It is helpful to set small goals along the way. Look at last year’s goals and see where you were successful and where you have room for improvement. Some goals take longer than a year to accomplish or they may need adjustments along the way. Here are a few ideas for homeowners, sellers and those looking to purchase their first home:
- Insurance – run an assessment of current policies: home/auto/life. Maybe you need to increase it or add an umbrella or jewelry policy? Speak to your insurance provider to see if there are discounts available or maybe shop it around for better rate.
- Mortgage – be sure you’re paying it on time and look to add an extra payment
- House Maintenance/Improvements – check furnace filter monthly, organize that junk drawer(s), look around for areas that could you a good cleaning (baseboards, ceiling fans, refrigerator(s), shower heads, etc), check your smoke & carbon monoxide detectors maybe they could use an upgrade. Pick an improvement project to complete this year.
- Emergency Kit – always a good idea to be prepared at home and in the car for an emergency. Things like flashlights, water, chargers, medications, food etc.
- Contact Trusted Realtor – Contact me for a market evaluation and to discuss your selling plan.
- Prepare House – What will you need to do to get your home ready? The market is not as hot as it once was, so we will need to be sure your home stands out.
- Move Date/Location – When are where do you want to move? Are you leaving the area? Will you be renting? We can work out a plan to help you get to your goal/dream home!
First Time Home Buyer:
- Save – I know this one is obvious but assessing your budget monthly and looking for ways to put aside more money is key.
- Reduce Debt – as part of your budget planning look at ways to pay off debt and keep it paid off.
- Improve Credit Rating – credit score is important and change every month. Be aware of your score and what you can do to improve it.
- Lender Pre-approval – speak with a lender to see what you qualify for and at what interest rate. Do you need to reduce your Debt-to-Income score (DTI), improve credit score, etc. A lender will be able to guide you with different programs and what you need to do next.
- Budget Planning – again it comes down to planning your budget for when you move into your new home. What will the utility costs look like…. Property taxes, insurance, house maintenance, etc.
- Avoid Large Purchases – these can affect your DTI, credit score etc. If you are close to purchasing a new home, hold off until after you close escrow.