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new homeowner need to know

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Once you buy a home, you know there will be a lot of correspondence to handle. The title paperwork will show up. You’ll have insurance policies to store. If you have an HOA, they’ll send you plenty of rules and regulations. You have to change your address with the post office, as well as just let all of the important contacts in your life know about your new address, just in case. There is no shortage of stuff to do and paperwork flying around. And spammers will very much take advantage of this chaotic time in your life. The moment you buy a home, that goes on public record, and tons of businesses – from legitimate to not-so-legitimate – are constantly checking those records, finding their next prey. They’re very good at sending mail that looks urgent, important, and official, too. You’re spending enough decorating the place, not to mention what you put on the down payment. You don’t need to spend another dollar on anything unnecessary, and you certainly don’t need to be robbed in what are truly scams. Here is spam mail to expect and beware of after you buy a home.

new homeowner need to know

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A better rate

You searched far and wide for the best rate. You went to many lenders. You got them to go as low as they would. Then you even bought down points. You did things to improve your credit score before applying for the loan. You felt certain you got the best rate when you finally locked in your loan. And then, these offers come flying in, offering you to refinance for way lower. Don’t fall for it. It’s an illusion. If you went down that rabbit hole, you’d find that promotional rate on the envelope didn’t apply to you. And they can’t do you any better than what you got.

new homeowner need to know

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Other loan offers

For a car. For your business. For personal reasons. All of these other offers will come in for other types of loans. Unfortunately, when you get one type of loan, all of the other lenders catch word of the fact that you like to borrow – or at least they assume you like to borrow – and slide into your mailbox to see if you’d like to borrow more.

new homeowner need to know

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Some title nonsense

Your escrow company has handled your title paperwork. The title has been transferred into your name. Any necessary title insurance has already been purchased. The title is all set. But these documents will come in labeled “Urgent” and “Open Immediately.” They’ll tell you that it’s very important that you order more copies of your title, or that you pay for this protection on the title. It’s a scam.

new homeowner need to know

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“Better” home insurance

You already researched your home insurance. You put a lot of time into finding the best policy and rate, just like you did with your loan rate. But those offers will come flying in, touting some premium that’s half of your current one. That’s also a lie. It’s a promotional figure, to get you to call them. It won’t apply to you. You won’t qualify for the policy that’s just $200 a year.

new homeowner need to know

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Landscapers

If you have an outdoor space, then you likely do need to hire a landscaper – unless it’s a small space that you can tend to yourself. So the landscaping offers will flood your mailbox. It’s always best to ask neighbors what the usual rates are for the area, before calling any of these. It’s also important to look up their reviews online to make sure they’re legitimate, before you give them access to your property.

new homeowner need to know

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Interior designers

They’ll also slide into that mail pile. And they’ll promote these incredible deals to furnish your place for, like, nothing. But if you call them, they’ll upsell you and somehow quadruple the quoted rate by the time you’re done. Interior decorators can’t really make their living by decorating your three-bedroom home for $400. They’ll sell you on the idea of $2,000 before the call is over.

new homeowner need to know

Source: seksan Mongkhonkhamsao / Getty

Lawyers

You may need a lawyer a few times throughout the homeownership process. Hopefully, you don’t, but sometimes you will. However, you don’t need to buy into the scare tactics local lawyers may send you, letting you know you could be at risk for all sorts of lawsuits and fraud if you don’t call them right away to be protected.

new homeowner need to know

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Credit card offers

The second one type of lender sees that another lender approved you, they want in on that bandwagon. So the credit card offers will swarm your home now. You can and should mostly ignore those, unless you were genuinely in the market for a new credit card, before this happened. Just always follow good credit card etiquette, part of which is not having too many cards.

new homeowner need to know

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Insurance you “must add”

The most bizarre insurance offers you’ve never heard of before will show up. You need just roof insurance, apparently. Or insurance for your parking spots in the shared garage. What? How about extra earthquake insurance – apparently you need that. Ignore, ignore, ignore. Your escrow company has walked you through the only insurance you actually need. If you truly feel you may want additional insurance, talk to other home-owning friends or an expert you trust before responding to these ads.

new homeowner need to know

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Offers of mortgage insurance

Some cities require mortgage insurance, and if that’s the case, then you already have it, but some don’t. And the ones who don’t require it, well, here’s why: the idea behind mortgage insurance is to give you some way to make payments, should your normal stream of revenue fall through. But, as a responsible adult, you likely already have a plan for that, right? You can just save for emergencies, and not pay an insurance company interest to do that for you.

new homeowner need to know

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Paid local patrol

Perhaps you’ll receive a letter from the self-reported local patrol. It’s a security company, asking if you’d like to buy into the security officer who, allegedly, already drives around the neighborhood keeping an eye on things. It’ll say your other neighbors already pay for it, but if you want the officer to keep an eye on your property, you have to pay in. It’s a lie. Your neighbors are paying for no such thing.

new homeowner need to know

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Home security systems

These aren’t necessarily scams, as it can certainly be worth it to invest in a security system. But know you’ll be smothered with these offers. And know that some deals will seem incredible, but if you read the fine print, you’ll find that the cost of the live feed on the cameras or to keep the alarms running triples after the first year, or something like that. So again, ask your home-owning friends for recommendations.

new homeowner need to know

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An offer on your home!

This will seem very strange, since you just bought the place yourself, but some house flippers may swoop in and ask if you’d like to sell them the place. Their offer will seem really great. They may say they’ll assume your loan, and pay you a bonus to hand it over to them. You probably don’t need to hear this, but ignore that. You searched long and hard for this place. You did the legwork to find it. It’s an investment. You bought it to sell it for twice what you paid in 30 years – not for a 5k profit today.

new homeowner need to know

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Faux escrow companies

There are a lot of payments to keep track of once you own a home. Insurance. HOA. Property taxes. Some companies, calling themselves forms of escrow companies, will reach out and offer to organize, track, and make those payments for you. The catch is that they’ll charge you a few hundred bucks a month, and possibly a fee for each individual payment on top of that.

new homeowner need to know

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Every local medical professional

The brochures and coupons are going to stuff your mailbox to the gills, so make sure to empty it daily so your USPS person doesn’t struggle. Every dentist, physician, veterinarian, and gym within a 10-mile radius will know you’re here, and just hammer you with coupons and offers.

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