Jeff’s Carlsbad Blog for First Time Home Buyers

The Responsibility of Home Ownership

Posted in Homeownership by Jeff Dowler on June 23, 2007

Buying a home is a huge responsibility. I expect you know that, having gone through the process of deciding IF you want to buy, and WHEN. Plus having made that decision you are already well on your way to becoming a new homeowner.

Owning a home is lots of fun. But with that comes responsibility. Lots of it.

1. Financial responsibility – unless you paid cash, you have a responsibility to pay your mortgage and associated fees (interest, property taxes, HOA fees, etc.) every month – you have to pay the fees even if you are a cash buyer, of course. This impacts your credit in a positive way if you are timely, but can really mess up your credit quickly if you are not responsible.

2. Home Maintenance – part of the responsibility of maintaining your home is, simply, that you are required to do so by the mortgage company. They can, if you do not maintain the property, call for payment of the note in full. Why? Well, the property is the colateral for the money the bank has loaned you. The other part of home maintenance is simply to better enjoy what you have purchased. And keeping your home in good working condition helps it last longer. If you are in an HOA or condo association you are also required to maintain the property in good working order, and they CAN come after you if you don’t.

3. Insurance – you have a responsibility to maintain insurance on your home…again a requirement of your loan (read the loan docs!). This is for your protection, but more so for the bank. And it’s possible that if you do not maintain the home properly and something happens the insurance company will rule it was negligence and not pay the claim.

4. You also have a responsibility to your neighbors, and the neighborhood in general, to keep your home looking in reasonably good shape and to not allow it to deteriorate into an eyesore. This allows for more pleasant and comfortable surroundings for all to enjoy. Isn’t that part of what attracted YOU to the neighborhood and the house?

5. Increased home value – this is, to a certain extent, a by-product of owning your home over time. But the better you maintain it the more likely the value will increase, perhaps more so than your neighbors. You no doubt noticed differences in similar homes when you were looking as a buyer, in part due to how they were cared for.

6. Pride of Ownership – your own personal satisfaction from owning, and caring for, a home is a big piece of why you bought one, isn’t it? You will be proud to show it off, and will better enjoy it yourself, if you take the responsibility of owneship seriously.

Owning a home is a big responsibility. I hope you take it seriously.

Have a great rest of the weekend!


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