Buying a home is challenging enough in this environment, even without student loan debt. But for those with outstanding student loans, the process can feel even more difficult. Affording a home is one thing, but securing home financing, budgeting for closing costs, and handling all the associated purchases that comes with a new home is entirely different.
To help you prepare, here are the 15 most popular things to buy for a new home.
Things to buy for a new home
New home buyers will quickly find that there are a lot of loose ends or things they'll need to purchase as they grow into their new homes.
For those that extended themselves, this can sometimes post a problem. We find that these purchases typically fall into a few different categories:
Tools and maintenance supplies
Depending on the home, you may need to purchase some or all of your kitchen appliances. Typically, larger items such as ovens or stoves are left behind for new homeowners to use, but some sellers may take refrigerators, microwaves, and most smaller appliances behind.
As a buyer, it is a good idea to prepare for the possibility that you'll need to buy some or all of:
2. Home decor
Many new homeowners are excited to put their own stamp on a property by furnishing it to their taste. This can be expensive, of course, so it is important for new homeowners to furnish their home in stages and focus on their needs before their wants.
More pressing home decor items include:
Curtains and drapes
Basic furniture, like a bed, sofa, and table
Lighting fixtures, like ceiling fans, overhead lighting, and lamps
Basic kitchenware, like utensils, plates, cups, etc.
You may already have many of these items, which is great!
But if you're moving into a bigger home or space than you've had before, you may need to furnish your home in different stages. My wife and I had a furnished living room, but not a family room for the first 8-10 months in our new home a couple of years ago.
All of the items on this list are also available at different price points, which is worth considering. Oftentimes, products of a comparable style and functionality are available for less money.
3. Tools and maintenance supplies
The next category of things to buy for a new home are tools and maintenance related supplies. When you're a renter and things go wrong, there is a landlord to call, who is responsible for fixing electric, plumbing, or other problems that may surface.
But when you own a property, you're responsible.
This is why every home should have a set of tools to use when things go wrong. Some new homeowner must haves include:
A set of screwdrivers
A hammer and mallet
Other tools as needed
There is also a number of maintenance tools that can come in handy when something happens, like a shop vac, ladder, and basic electrical/plumbing kits.
4. Storage solutions
You're likely going to bring most all of your possessions with you when you move into your new home, and when combined with the new things you'll buy, you'll have a lot to keep track off.
Having ample home storage solutions are important for this reason.
Your new house will have a finite amount of closest, garage, shed, and basement storage space (at least initially and until you have money to invest), so it will be important that you acquire what you need to stay organized.
Things like plastic bins, storage racks, pallets, and shelving can be a huge help.
5. Home security system
More like than not, home security wasn't top of mind or even your responsibility as a renter. But for new anxious homeowners, this is a nice to have to have. Some security systems don't just monitor for potential intruders, but also can help sense fire and water should a potential disaster arise.
There are many options on the market, with local companies competing with more national brands like:
6. Outdoor maintenance equipment
Another new home essential, particularly for those with land or property to take care of, is outdoor equipment. A lawnmower is the first thing that comes to mind here, but you'll also want to think through:
Snow removal equipment
Bins/bags for lawn waste
Other new homeowner must haves
Here are a few more must haves for homeowners, depending on your location and wants.
Backup energy and heat sources
Many first-time owners won't be able to afford a generator, and that's okay. Still, it is important to have alternate ways to generate heat and energy should a natural disaster strike.
Excess propane tanks (stored away from your home) can help you to prepare food in the event of power failure, and excess firewood or a wood pellet stove may help you keep your home warm and avoid frozen pipes if you live in an area with cold winters.
If you have a well instead of city/town water, you may also need access to clean water, both to drink and flush toilets around your home.