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8 Things New Homeowners Should Know

Buying your first home is a major milestone. After years of hard work, you no longer have to worry about answering to a landlord or wondering if your rent is going to increase again. Before you start celebrating, however, there are some things first-time homeowners should know about for safety and security purposes.

After more than 40 years of providing expert security advice, Ackerman Security knows exactly how to keep your family safe. Here are 6 things we recommend that first-time homeowners do:

  • Review what's covered in your home warranty
  • Change the locks
  • Make sure smoke detectors work
  • Keep a fire extinguisher ready
  • Know the locations of water shut-off valves
  • Schedule HVAC maintenance

We'll also cover reasons to invest in a home security system, including peace of mind and saving on your homeowners' insurance premiums!

Interested in a security system for your Atlanta home? Call Ackerman Security at 800.552.1111 or get a free instant quote online today. Since 1967, we've been Atlanta's leading home security provider. Rest assured we'll keep your new home safe and secure for years to come!

Review What's Covered in Your Home Warranty

If you purchased a home warranty, it's important to understand what's covered. A home warranty typically covers appliances and home systems, including water heaters, washers, dryers, refrigerators and air conditioners. If one of these items stops working due to normal wear and tear, a home warranty may pay to have it repaired or replaced.

Some companies offer additional lines of coverage to give you extra protection. For example, you may be able to purchase a policy that includes roof repair in the event of a major leak. Policies are also available for home electronics, swimming pools and hot tubs.

Important Move-In Tasks

Now that you know what your home warranty covers, you can turn your attention to home safety and security.

Change the Locks

A man and a woman smiling while staring at a set of keys.

The first thing you should do is change the locks. Just because the seller turned over a set of keys at closing doesn't mean that additional copies aren't floating around somewhere.

It's possible the previous owner gave keys to babysitters, contractors, pet sitters and other home service providers. Changing the locks ensures that no one else has access to your home after you close on the sale.

Make Sure Smoke Detectors Work

According to the U.S. Fire Administration, 60% of all home fire deaths occur in homes without working smoke alarms. That's why it's so important to make sure the smoke detectors work before you move in.

Take down each smoke detector and hit the test button to make sure it emits a beep. Once you make sure a smoke detector works, check the date on it. If the manufacturing date was more than 10 years ago, replace the smoke alarm with a new one, even if it works when you test it.

For extra peace of mind, keep spare batteries on hand so that you can replace dying batteries immediately.

Keep a Fire Extinguisher Ready

A close up view of a fire extinguisher hanging on a white wall in a stairwell.

Since 1967, Ackerman Security has been providing advanced security products to Atlanta-area residents. Based on our decades of experience in the industry, we recommend keeping a fire extinguisher at the ready at all times. Once you purchase a fire extinguisher, keep it in a location that's easy to access. You don't want to have to dig through a closet or climb up on a step stool when flames are spreading and the room is filling with smoke.

We also recommend conducting regular home safety audits to make sure fire extinguishers and other safety items are in good working order. When you conduct a home safety audit, check your fire extinguisher for signs of damage. There shouldn't be any dents or rust on the canister. If the extinguisher has a pressure gauge, check it to make sure the pressure inside the canister isn't too high or low.

Know the Locations of Water Shut-Off Valves

The average cost of a home insurance claim related to water damage is just under $7,000. That makes leaks a serious concern for new homeowners. One way to reduce the risk of damage is to know exactly where your water shut-off valves are located. The main valve turns off all the water running into your home, making it the most important one. If you know where this valve is located, you can put a stop to leaks as soon as you notice them.

You should also identify the locations of other valves in your home. This makes it easy to stop leaks without having to turn off the entire water supply. Washing machines, toilets and sinks typically have these valves nearby. If your bathtub has exposed plumbing, it may also have its own shut-off valve.

Schedule HVAC Maintenance

Regular maintenance can make your HVAC system more efficient and extend its useful life. In some cases, proper maintenance can even prevent home fires and other accidents. That's why you should schedule HVAC maintenance as soon as you buy a new home.

An HVAC professional may recommend replacing filters, cleaning condensers, replacing worn belts, changing batteries or performing other services to keep your HVAC system in top condition.

Reasons to Invest in a Home Security System

Safety and home security go hand in hand. That's why we recommend that all homeowners install a security system either before they move in or as soon as possible after their move-in date. Investing in a home security system has two key benefits: peace of mind and the potential to save money on homeowners insurance.

Peace of Mind

A security system with 24/7 monitoring gives you the peace of mind of knowing that someone is available to help you when you need it. Our security professionals can respond to a wide range of emergencies, from fires to attempted break-ins, keeping your family as safe as possible. Contact us today to learn more about our 24/7 monitoring service.

Save on Your Homeowners' Insurance Premiums

Installing a home security system can help you save as much as 2% to 15% on your homeowner's insurance premiums. Insurance companies reward customers who take extra steps to protect their property, making a home security system a great investment for budget-conscious homeowners.

Get a Free Security Quote from Ackerman Today.

At Ackerman Security, we want you to enjoy your Atlanta home as much as possible. Once you follow these safety and security tips, get a free instant quote online or contact us at (800) 552-1111 to learn how to protect your home from a variety of threats.