6 Unforeseen Costs of Home Ownership

View of Wilmington North Carolina from across the river

While buyers tend to mostly focus on listing prices of houses, don’t get surprised by the unforeseen costs of owning a home. In fact, home owners can spend more than $9,000 a year on hidden home ownership and maintenance costs. Here are some expenses you should factor in and consider during your home buying journey!

Property Taxes

When you buy a house, your new taxes are based on the sales price. You can determine that cost by searching online for your state’s property tax estimator or by contacting your local assessor’s office and request information on what your taxes will be based on the value you’re buying your home.

Homeowners Insurance

Homeowners insurance is a necessary cost as it assesses the value of your home and belongings in case of losses and damage due to fires, storms, or burglary. Depending on the area you live in, you might need an additional policy for floods, hurricanes or other natural disasters.

Utilities

Home ownership means taking on utility charges at your new residence, and they are probably higher than they were in your cramped one-bedroom apartment.

Home Maintenance

Whether it’s plumbing leaks, HVAC repair/inspection, pest treatments or lawn care, you will have to take on these costs as a home owner. Sometimes it’s an unexpected repair, and sometimes it’s just routine maintenance. Some maintenance you can do on your own like cleaning the gutters or mowing your lawn. Just leave the pest control or plumbing issues to the pros!

Furniture & Appliances

If you’re transitioning from an apartment to a house, you more than likely will find yourself needing furniture to fill up your new home. You also must consider the current status of your home’s appliances such as refrigerators, washers, dryers or dishwashers. They might be in need of an upgrade down the road or require the service of a professional repairman.

HOA Costs

If your new house is part of an HOA or home owner’s association, you will have to take on an HOA fee which goes towards maintaining the common areas of that community. Be sure to ask your realtor if the home you’re interested in buying is a part of a HOA and what their costs and benefits are. This way you can plan for this cost prior to the purchase of your home or make the decision to steer clear based on your budget.

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