Closing escrow on a home is an exciting event for a new home owner. All of the carefully orchestrated pieces of the real estate transaction have come together, bringing the end of what can be a long and complicated process and finally putting keys into the hands of the new owner. While this may signal the end of the transaction, it also signals a new beginning for the home owner.
In order to begin on the right foot, there are a few items that new home owners should address directly after closing escrow that can help to ensure the security and health of such a large investment.
Change the Locks
This is an important item to address immediately after taking possession of a home. Failing to change locks is akin to inviting past owners and key holders into your home and to your belongings. This is a relatively cheap item to take care of, making it an essential one. Even if chances of a breach seem remote, it is still wise to take every precaution to make sure that it absolutely does not happen.
Get Home Warranty Information In Order
The second you take possession of a home or property, the clock starts ticking on your home warranty. Most home warranty policies cover homes for one year, so be prepared to take advantage of that grace period. Directly after closing escrow you should have all of your policy paperwork handy. Go through the paperwork before you file it away and get the customer service contact information into your phone immediately. This way if there are any issues throughout the first year, you can easily call that number and see if the issue is covered under the policy.
Another way to take advantage of your warranty is to set a reminder to check your home for needed repairs prior to the expiration of the warranty. Set a reminder in your phone for around the 345th day after closing. On that day, walk around your house to check for any leaks, cracks or malfunctioning elements of the home. This way you have a few weeks to address the problem under the warranty before it expires and you lose out.
Set Termite Inspection Reminders
Much like your home warranty, any termite repairs done to your home are under warranty for one to two years as well. Immediately after closing you should set yourself up for success by gathering contact information for the termite company that did your inspection and was responsible for any repairs that were done prior to your ownership. Keep this information in your phone again for easy access in the event of an issue arising.
Set yourself two reminders for: one for the 345th day after you close escrow and another for the 700th day. On the day of your first notification, check on any home repairs that were done by the termite company and have any issues taken care of before the one year warranty is up. The second notification should be to all in the termite company to re-inspect for active infestation. Under California law your new home has a two-year warranty to inspect and treat any termite problem.