Home Ownership Costs To Expect And Budget For As A New Homeowner

When you buy a home there are certain costs that you plan for from the beginning, such as paying your new mortgage and closing costs on the purchase transaction. However, once you take ownership of your home there are some additional costs that you need to plan for in your home ownership budget. Here are some recommendations to consider when you are searching for a home.

Utility Costs

When you buy a new home, the utilities costs to keep its interior comfortable in summer and winter and to run the electricity for lighting and appliances may vary. This depends on the size of the home and its age, in addition to the efficiency of the home. For example, if you are buying an older home that has a heating system that is outdated and the windows and doors don't seal properly, the heating and cooling costs will be elevated. And depending on your previous home's utility costs, you might have to pay a bit more when you move in to your new home purchase.

Also look at the type of heating that a home has prior to selecting it to purchase. A home heating system that is electrical versus heating oil or energy efficient fuel, such as propane or natural gas will make the utility costs increase more than what you are accustomed to with your current utilities budget. 

With the help of your realtor you can ask the seller about the current cost of any home utilities and request past bills to determine their cost. This can help you make a decision about the home and its purchase. If you want to update the home's heating or air conditioning system, this is a factor you can add into the purchase contract or budget for its replacement once you buy the property.

Maintenance Budget

As you tour through each home, you will also want to consider the costs that the home will need as regular maintenance and for upcoming repairs. For example, if you buy a home with a septic system installed, you won't have to pay city sewer costs, but you will need to hire a septic inspection and pump out the tank every few years. And if any damage occurs to the tank and its septic drain lines you will be responsible for their repairs or eventual replacement.

You will also need to factor in costs to maintain the yard and landscaping. So if a home has a large expanse of lawn, shrubbery, and flower beds, you will need to handle its maintenance and costs or hire a professional landscaper to take care of it for you.

If you have concerns about extra costs of homeownership, talk to real estate agents and brokers to talk about homes in your budget.