You have been slaving away on this remodel for an unknowable amount of time — maybe months, maybe decades — and your vision has finally been realized.
Now, your home is as perfect as you imagined, and you don’t want anything to mess it up.
Hoping won’t do anything to protect your beautiful new home. Instead, you need to take certain steps toward financially and physically safeguarding your investment.
Here are a few important ways you can keep your home safe — after the remodel is complete.
Reinvigorate Your Home Insurance Policy
Way back when you first applied for home insurance, you answered questions about the size and quality of your home. Using that information, your insurance provider estimated the cost of rebuilding or repairing your home, should disaster strike.
However, now that you have completed a remodel, your home likely has a vastly different value.
You might have added square footage to your home with an addition; you might have updated the plumbing, roof, HVAC or large appliances; you almost definitely upgraded the materials in your home, such as the flooring and counter tops.
You need to tell your insurance company about your remodel and have them reassess your home’s value.
Yes, this will result in an increase to your monthly payment, but it will also ensure that your remodel is covered completely in an emergency.
Look Into an Appropriate Home Warranty Policy
Few people remodel new-construction homes, so it is likely that you own an older home that has some cosmetic updates.
If this is the case, it is important that you also have a home warranty policy to supplement your homeowner’s insurance.
Unlike insurance, home warranties protect your home from regular wear and tear.
Here’s an illustrative example:
If your old, worn-down hot water heater breaks and floods your basement, your insurance will pay for the flood damage, but your home warranty will pay to fix or replace your water heater.
It’s likely that your contractor offers some kind of insurance to guarantee that every change they made to your home is high quality and to-code, but you need a home warranty to protect other elements of your home as well as systems in your remodeled rooms that you didn’t touch, like electrical or plumbing.
It is important that you survey different plans to find the best home warranty coverage for you and your remodel.
Install High-tech Gas and Smoke Detectors
In the United States, smoke detectors have been mandatory features in homes since 1967 — and other countries have required the tech for longer than that.
However, in most states, carbon monoxide detectors are only required in certain circumstances if they are required at all.
Carbon monoxide can leak out of central heating systems, water heaters and any appliances that rely on gas, oil or coal fuel; it is an odorless gas that kills quickly and silently.
Even if you only have a fireplace in your home, you should ensure that your smoke detector is also sniffing out CO.
You should consider installing the latest and greatest detectors, which connect with your smartphone to alert you to dangers in your home even when you are away.
Invest in a Comprehensive Home Security System
Many homeowners mistakenly believe that burglars are sneaky and careful when they invade homes looking for valuables.
The truth is thieves are messy and destructive; they don’t care what your home looks like after they’ve been through, as long as they can find your valuables and get out fast.
Your expensive remodel likely won’t survive a home invasion fully intact. Therefore, it is worth your money to invest in high quality home security.
What this means will vary depending on your security needs and budget; you might feel sufficiently secure with a few smart cameras set around your home’s exterior, or you might need a security system that alerts police and other responders when triggered.
You might speak with a security expert to determine what path is right for you.
Be Diligent About Pest Control
Finally, the last thing you want in your shiny, new remodel are creepy, crawly critters.
Rodents, roaches and other pests aren’t just gross; they also cause excessive damage by chewing through electrical wires, boring holes in walls, floors and ceilings and generally undermining the strength of any structure.
Plus, pests carry disease and allergens, which can make your life intolerable.
Again, you should talk to a pest control expert to learn about destructive pests in your area and what you can do to keep them at bay.
Usually, this means spraying pest-killer on a schedule, but you might also need to lay traps to catch and keep away existing infestations.