There is something so truly special about your first home. We moved out of our first home over a year ago and although our new house is a lot bigger, I still miss our first home every day. Don’t get me wrong, I love our new house, but our first house is where my husband and I made so many wonderful memories together when we first started out. Being a homeowner isn’t always easy and today I have partnered with Esurance to share my experience as a homeowner when having home insurance was crucial.
After going through a big breakup in 2007, I decided that I wanted to purchase my own house all on my own. I was set on finding a house that was waterfront in the New England area and began my search in the spring of 2009. I found two homes on the water that I loved (or so I thought at the time) that both fell through after going through the home inspections. I was devastated. I had pictured my life in both of those homes and when they both fell through, I thought I would never find a house. I finally found a renovated home that was located on the water that was way out of my price range. I remember reading the listing and it said something along the lines of “Pre-approved buyers only.” I thought to myself, “there’s no way I will ever be able to afford this house,” but I went and saw the house anyway.
The house was a renovated home that was just the perfect size for me. It was 800 square feet, had deeded beach rights and was set back about 60 feet from the water. When I went to see the house, the owners even took me for a boat ride to show me the entire lake. I completely fell in love. Buying this house alone on a teacher’s salary was really going to stretch me thin. At the end of the day, I decided to make a few personal sacrifices and go for it. I made a pretty low offer on the house, hoping the owners would accept it and they did! This was great news for me!
I moved into my house in August of 2009 just after meeting my husband. I purchased a boat in the summertime and we would spend our summers boating, fishing, swimming and skiing. I loved that house. I have so many amazing memories in our first home. We loved our house so much, that we even thought it would be fitting to get married there! In 2012, we got married outside on the lake where had spent most of our days together. I also had my first baby in that house (well, not actually in my house, but you catch my drift) I created a nursery for Bennett there and brought him home from the hospital to our cozy little lake home.
Being a homeowner is tough. There are constantly things to pay for, maintenance to do and items to be fixed. In the winter of 2014, our chimney cap collapsed and caused what they call a “soot puffback.” The chimney cap was a cement cover that went on top of my chimney that vented my furnace. We started to notice the soot very gradually at first and then realized it was on EVERYTHING. The soot had been circulating through the vents of my house for days (maybe even longer) until every inch was covered. We ended up having to call a restoration company to clean up our home. They were at our house for an entire week, cleaning everything. They took all of our clothing, towels, bed linens etc. to the dry cleaners to get specially treated. Our walls had to be repainted, the carpets had to be replaced and it was a total disaster. All of the pink insulation in my basement (located near my furnance) was completely black and had to be pulled out and replaced. I feel very lucky that something worse didn’t happen to us or our home, but going through this whole process was really challenging. I remember getting the bill for the week and it was for over $5,000. As a young couple, we definitely didn’t have that kind of money just laying around! After the carpets, paint and insulation were replaced, our bill jumped up to over $10,000! I couldn’t believe how expensive everything was for such a small space! Luckily for us, we had a great home insurance plan that took care of everything for us.
As you might know, we left our home in New England and moved to Georgia last year. After going through such a mess with that house, we made sure to get a good home insurance plan for our new house. After going through all of that, we really learned the value of a good home insurance plan. One of the qualities that I look for in an insurance company is ease! I like to do everything electronically and online, because I just don’t have the time these days to have to deal with people on the phone. Esurance is super easy! You can get a free quote online within minutes. Using Esurance also allows you to cutdown on paperwork, manage your policy online, has flexible payment options and has customer service that is available 24/7. They even have an app that lets you do everything right from your smartphone! I hope that you never have to go through something like we did, but if you do, make sure you have a great home insurance plan to give you some peace of mind!