Buying a home is likely to be among the most daunting decisions in one’s life. You link yourself up to numerous financial obligations just as you accept the keys to your new home. A home comes with a great deal of responsibility and a lot of costs. Down payment, closing costs, insurance and tax costs, and mortgage cost are few of the more significant financial elements in the home buying process. However, most often we tend to overlook the hidden and surprising costs that come along with being new homeowners. Managing all these expenses is challenging and can have a major impact when paying off debt. Here are some homeowner costs you may encounter.
Unexpected New Homeowners Costs
Understanding some of the surprise cost elements is important for managing your budget. Here’s a few that might go unnoticed.
- Lawn maintenance. When we were house hunting one of the things that was in the “must have” list for us was a decent sized yard. And when we eventually found what we liked, the costs started to follow suite. From purchasing a lawn mower or hiring a lawn service, to maintaining irrigation systems and the associated costs. These are just a few things to consider.
- Changing the locks. This may seem like a minor expense compared to all that money you already spent buying your home. However, smaller expenses add up faster than we think and are essential to keeping your home secure.
- Multiple appliance repairs and replacement. The kitchen with all appliances is a big selling point when buying your new home. But repairs and replacements are inevitable. It may come sooner or later. However accounting for such emergency costs is crucial in your home buying process as such costs are significant.
- Cosmetic upgrades. Once you buy your dream home, it is normal to customize your space with cosmetic upgrades to your liking. It can be in form of window treatments, painting the walls, or refinishing your floors. These cosmetic upgrades can turn out to be much more expensive than we assume. Therefore, including these costs in a contingency budget is a good idea.
- Furnishing the new home. Unlike the times you rented, this is where you actually want to put in a deeper effort into decorating your home. This is not necessarily a cost that you think of including into your budget. However, from a bath mat to your dining table, your home decor costs will add up quickly. Planning for these is essential.
Once you get the keys to your new home you begin a whole new chapter in your life. The thing to remember is that everything that you dream of in your new home can come slowly and steadily. Make sure you include these homeowner costs into your budget and plan ahead. See if you can DIY a few things and manage the costs. Debt management can be challenging, but not if you plan your expenses ahead of time.
If you’re struggling to pay off debt, ACCC can help. Schedule a free credit counseling session with us today.