I love the beginning of a new year – a time where we can reflect on the previous year and set goals to make the upcoming year even better than the last.

Some of us may have made goals as far as budgeting, health, etc. But did you consider making some goals for 2017 as a homeowner? If not, here are 5 resolutions we’d highly advise you to incorporate.

And, as always, if there’s any way we can help with any of these, send us an email or give us a call!

#1: Bump Up Your Mortgage Payments

With some of your leftover cash each month, you may want to consider allocating that money towards increasing your monthly mortgage payment. Making additional payments towards the principal balance on your mortgage can significantly reduce the amount of interest you pay and the lifetime of your loan.

Any amount you can contribute will help – whether that’s $50, $100 or $200 a month.

The best way to figure out what you can add is to create a budget and find areas where you can cut back to allow for more money to go towards paying off your home.

#2: Consider Refinancing

You’ve heard it for months – interest rates are still considerably lower than where they have been in the past. Current rates hover somewhere around the 4% mark which is HALF of the average interest rates over the past 40 years.

Also, if you currently have a variable interest rate, you may want to refinance to a fixed rate mortgage and take advantage of the currently low interest rates.

Talk to your lender about your refinancing options. Or if you need recommendations of a lender to talk to, let us know.

#3: Review and Renew Your Homeowners Insurance

We always recommend reviewing your homeowners insurance policy each year, just to make sure you are getting the best rates and coverage possible.

It doesn’t hurt to shop around and ask several companies to give you quotes. And if you find that you’re paying more, feel free to ask your current insurance company to match the lowest quote.

Also, if your insurance isn’t already bundled, do it! And if you’ve made any major improvements to your home, let your insurance agent know as that could potentially lower your premiums.

#4: Declutter, Declutter, Declutter

We usually think about decluttering during “spring cleaning” season, but the start of a new year is also a great time to get rid of all that unnecessary junk you don’t need. Clean out your closets, empty your fridge, organize all your paperwork…

It’s much easier to be productive in a new year when your space is uncluttered and organized.

#5: Check for Safety

Now’s also the perfect time to do things like check that all of your smoke detectors are working and hold a family meeting where you can discuss your emergency evacuation plan.

You never know what could happen, so it’s always good to be prepared!