Buying a home is an exciting experience, but it’s arguably the most considerable expense you’ll ever take on (I mean, except kids and a spouse. but you know what we meant). You’ll need to ensure that you’ve got it all factored in correctly. There are quite a few costs that you’ll need to think about when it comes to your new home that goes above the actual price. Let’s take a look at the true costs of being a homeowner.
True costs of buying a home
A home inspection for future, unexpected charges
Most homeowners will (or should) get a detailed, in-depth home inspection done before the home's sale. Many will make the home sale conditional on the result of that inspection. Most real estate agents require it or insist upon it, actually.
Regardless of what it turns up, it will cost money for that inspection. The results will also give you a solid idea of what major and unexpected repairs could be possible in the future (for example, new windows and doors, a roof, electrical panels, etc.). These all are expensive costs that you’ll want to plan for, again, above the cost of the sale of the home.
Closing costs of the sale
The sale of the home has what’s commonly referred to as “closing costs.” These include title fees, lawyer fees, contract fees, and more. While expected, they can add cost to the sale of the house other than what you see on the price tag itself.
Operating your home comes at a specific cost that is often a shock to most people who move into a home for the first time. The sheer cost of running a whole house with heat or cooling, appliances, lights, gas, water, trash and recycling, etc., etc., etc, it all adds up, and quickly.
Homeowner’s insurance premiums
With a home comes the need for a homeowner’s insurance policy. The monthly fees will add to the other fees you will pay per month. Your insurance agent will be able to help you understand what the fees are for and how to help keep them as low as possible while still enjoying full coverage. Unless you buy your home with cash, this is typically added into your mortgage via the escrow account - but you are still paying for it in your monthly mortgage. Here in the League City, Texas, the Gulf Coast, we also face the need for windstorm and flood insurance as well. So, depending upon where you live, will determine whether you pay annually outside of escrow or if it is rolled into your escrow too.
This is a popular one for many to forget about! Even if you are moving locally, there are still costs (sometimes just time and/or time off for work and/or materials ro rentals) for packing, moving, loading, and unloading all of your belongings. Then there are storage facilities, units or pods for the interim, packing supplies, etc.
HOA and tax fees
If you are living in an HOA neighborhood, you’ll need to have either monthly or annual fees for that factored in. Don’t forget property taxes, too! Those are either put into your escrow or billed to you directly to pay every year.
Simply put, there are a lot of extra costs to being a homeowner than what you see on the price tag when you are shopping around. While that’s an alarming issue for most people, there’s a lot to be said for preparing for it ahead of time. So it’s going to just be a matter of balancing the books rather than dealing with the shock of these extra bills without proper preparation. This will help you be well on your way to doing that responsibly and safely! That’s a massive part of budgeting properly for your home so that it stays an exciting milestone rather than a terrifying one.
We aren't real estate agents and leave the house shopping, buying and selling to the professionals but are the pros when it comes to insuring that home or condo you are buying. Let's talk numbers before you start to shop so you can an idea before you sign.... otherwise, let us know how we can help with your personal insurance. Contact Harbour Insurance Services at (281)520-4090 today and let's get you squared away!