When you own your own home, it’s easy to get caught up in the excitement of things like redecorating and landscaping, but home ownership can come with other expenses that you may not have considered when deciding to purchase your first home. While most of these expenses are minor, they can add up over time if you aren’t careful. Below are six home ownership-related expenses that may surprise you—and ways to ensure they don’t catch you off guard: ###
If you’re a homeowner, you know how much of your paycheck goes to taxes. While your property tax is based on home value and location, there are many other costs associated with buying a home. When it comes to protecting one’s investment, taxes aren’t always considered; however, there are some expenses that come with homeownership that people often overlook. The following list includes six cost items most commonly overlooked when considering buying a home
Unless you’re living in a mobile home, or renting an apartment with no utilities included, you have expenses for water, sewer and electricity. In most cases, these bills are in addition to your mortgage payment. The cost of your utility bills will vary based on what part of the country you live in. For example, if you live in a warm climate like Arizona or Florida, utilities could be significantly higher than what someone might pay living somewhere cold like Wisconsin or Alaska. To estimate utility costs for a particular area visit Fixr and click on Utilities at top of page to get a general price range by zip code.
Whether you are paying for your home through a mortgage or paying rent, there is a cost associated with it. Be sure to factor in taxes and homeowners insurance (if you don’t have renters insurance) as well. Insurance: This is not only a necessary cost of living in your home, but also an important asset protection tool. Don’t forget about flood and earthquake coverage if you’re at risk for these natural disasters. Utilities: If you own a house, you’ll also have to pay for water, sewer and trash service each month. If you’re renting, ask what utilities are included with your rent before setting up automatic payments on your account—you may be able to save money by switching to online billing or choosing another provider that better fits your needs.
Depending on where you live, a home requires a lot of ongoing maintenance. Of course, your utility bills can vary widely depending on energy consumption. But even if you’re one of those lucky people who live in a state or region with inexpensive power costs, there are still plenty of other things to factor into your overall property maintenance costs. For example, for most people in cold climates like New England and upstate New York, it’s hard to estimate yearly HVAC service costs because they vary so wildly from year to year based on weather patterns. Still other homeowners might find that installing new windows is their best option for increasing their home’s resale value and quality (of life). And let’s not forget about roof repairs!
Furniture and Appliances
The cost of furniture and appliances can vary drastically depending on your taste, but it’s still a good idea to plan for it in your home purchase budget. Keep in mind that some spaces will have existing furniture and appliances that come with the property and you won’t be responsible for paying their costs, though you may have to repair or replace them. If you’re not sure what to include, start by thinking about things like bedding, dishes, a refrigerator, stove/oven and washer/dryer. These are all items that most people need in their homes and it makes sense to think about them at time of purchase. On average these items will cost between $2-$3 per square foot for a new set.
Many people look to hire an interior designer as they prepare to buy a new home. Hiring a professional can not only help you make your dream home a reality, but it can also save you time and money in the long run. To be clear, these are services that come at an additional cost. While hiring an interior designer is an expense most first-time homeowners aren’t prepared for, if done correctly, it can significantly increase your return on investment (ROI). According to Remodeling Magazine’s 2017 Cost vs. Value Report , people who used a design service were able to realize a 12% ROI on their projects when compared with those who didn’t use one – so while interior design may seem like an indulgence initially, it can actually pay off over time!