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39 tips for every homeowner: Day 2

by Community Manager

‎06-30-2014 10:00 PM

Home inspectorBuying a home is a big step, and there is so much to cover. Here are some simple things that could slip through the cracks if you’re not careful.


9. Always have your locks rekeyed immediately.


10. Stay updated on schools. “You need to call the school district and find out if there will be any boundary changes regarding schools, especially in new neighborhoods,” says Dana Winans, director of relocation services for Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate, a Dallas-based firm participating in the USAA MoversAdvantage® program.


11. Understand your homeowners insurance coverage. “A lot of times when people buy a house, they don’t understand all of the liability limits,” says Scott Halliwell, a Certified Financial Plannerwith USAA. “I always encourage homeowners to really look at their policies again and see if there are any changes they’d make. I’ve talked to a lot of people who have a 1 percent deductible but didn’t really think about what that means. One percent of a $400,000 home is a lot of money for most people.” 


JJ Montanaro, a Certified Financial Plannerwith USAA adds: “Understand what type of coverage your homeowners insurance has and its limitations. If you have expensive jewelry or electronics, you may have some coverage, but it may be subject to deductibles and limits.” He suggests looking into valuable personal property or umbrella policies with USAA to help make sure your assets are protected.


Quiz your home inspector about maintaining your new investment.


12. What do I need to prepare and protect the home against freezing weather?


13. How do I properly maintain drainage and moisture around the home to prevent foundation issues?


14. How often do I need to have the HVAC system serviced to keep it in proper working order?


15. Which items would you repair or replace if you were buying the home?


Wednesday: We’ll cover tips 16-24.


MoversAdvantage® is offered by USAA Relocation Services, Inc., a licensed real estate broker and subsidiary of USAA Federal Savings Bank. Program may be unavailable for employer- sponsored relocations. Not available for transactions in Iowa or outside the US. This is not a solicitation if you are already represented by a real estate broker. 


Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards, Inc. owns the certification marks CFP® and CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ in the United States, which it awards to individuals who successfully complete CFP Board's initial and ongoing certification requirements.


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Inspector Carousel Tips 9-15

Community Managers

Briana Hartzell

Briana Hartzell

Briana knows all about moving. This Navy wife has helped her husband relocate to four different naval air stations in the last three years. A former USAA employee, Briana is co-founder of The Triple Dish, a blog focused on food, fitness and military life.

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Wendy Poling

Wendy Poling

Wendy is a social media strategist and founder of, featuring a popular military spouse blog and the hit podcast Navy Wife Radio and now Military Life Radio. She is the wife of a submariner who has also served in Afghanistan.

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Charles Pratt

Charles "Chazz" Pratt

Charles "Chazz" Pratt III is a former U.S. Army Captain who made the Military-to-Civilian career transition in 1994. In his book, The Fort Living Room Transition Course, he shares valuable tips & tricks to help you succeed. Since his transition from the military, he's worked for several Fortune 500 companies, including Pfizer, Genentech, and St. Jude Medical, among others.

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Scott Halliwell

Scott Halliwell

Scott Halliwell is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ practitioner.

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Joseph Montanaro

Joseph "J.J." Montanaro

Joseph "J.J." Montanaro is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ practitioner.

View Joseph "J.J." Montanaro's Profile