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Heather's Top Tips for New Homeowners

Updated: Oct 18, 2021

Your first home... It's an exciting purchase! And it's completely understandable that you might get carried away by the rush of happy feelings that come with accomplishing this goal. But before you jump into a deal, allow me to offer this quick checklist that will ensure your new house is the right one for you.

  • Ask about the plumbing system. Is the house hooked up to city water or the sewer system or whatever that thing is called? The answer you want is a resounding, "Yes!"

  • Make sure you won't be depending on a septic system, which is the other way this issue is handled and basically means you have a tank buried in your yard.

  • If the house is on a septic system, insist that there must be some other option, some path to rectifying this situation. Because you don't want a septic system. You really don't.

  • When you find out it's a septic system and the realtor ensures you that plenty of houses use septic and it's perfectly fine, know that this is a lie. Septic systems fail. All the time.

  • Contact the septic service because they will have to do disgusting things like "pump out the tank" before you move into your new home. Do not contemplate exactly what this means or might look like in real life.

  • After they leave - and this is important - realize you don't fully understand how a septic system works because, let's face it, you don't want to. That's their job, right?

  • Wrong. There are other buried tanks and leach fields and various parts to this septic system that you've never heard about and would never think to question. This is the reason you'll allow a delivery truck to drive through your lawn and crush one of those other tanks.

  • Once you've crippled your new home's entire plumbing system with this misstep, call the septic service for help. This is a situation you cannot resolve on your own, and yet, you will not receive the quick response you'd hope for in such an emergency. This is because, as mentioned earlier, "plenty of houses use septic" and "septic systems fail. All the time."

  • You may get down on yourself at this point for choosing unwisely. But don't lose heart. Isn't there a Stewart's right up the street from your new home?

  • Congratulate yourself for making "walkable neighborhood" a top priority. Now that was a good decision!

A typical home found in New York's Adirondack region


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