Scary After Closing Costs: Things to Keep in Mind Now that You are a Homeowner

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Wooo Hooo! You found the perfect home, the price is right, and your offer was accepted! Cue the happy dancing and confetti!  When starting your homebuying process, you planned for the known costs, like; down payment, closing costs, moving boxes, etc. But now that you are a homeowner, it is essential to be prepared for additional costs. Because in your new home, if something is wrong, YOU are the landlord you would call!  Prepare for Unexpected Costs: When calculating costs on your new home, the previous owner is the most significant factor affecting that number. They may take the refrigerator or other appliances when they move out. Resulting in you paying for new ones to replace them.  The miscellaneous items like appliances, curtains, lights, etc. may seem like a small purchase compared to buying a home, but it can quickly add up, especially if you spent most of your savings on your down payment.  You will also be responsible for immediate improvements unless you get it negotiated in the contract to be done before closing.  We always recommend hiring a home inspector to look at the home before closing. They will look for issues with the foundation, wood rot, electrical wiring, and other hidden problems you may have missed when walking through the home.  Even when the home inspection goes well, when purchasing an older home, it is common for things to need updating regardless. Things like; the garage door breaking, the dishwasher flooding, the dryer giving your clothes a funky smell can all happen. Being prepared with cash can make these inconveniences a lot less stressful.  Comfort can cost some significant coin:  Another thing to keep in mind is your comfort. Do you plan to have cable TV? Is the house already wired for it? If not, you will need to have a technician set that up.  If you are moving to a larger home, chances are your utility bills will be higher. You may even take on utilities that your previous landlord lumped into your rent. You can call the local companies and ask for the average bill in the area. Doing this will give you an estimated number in your mind when calculating your monthly expenses. Take a serious look at all your costs to decide which house you can afford – without giving up comfort.  Do your research:  The best way to be prepared is with a lot of research and planning! We recommend starting the research before you even start house hunting! Then you will want to continue to research during your home search.  If you are looking at homes that need some improvements, research how much they will really cost. Nothing is worse than finding out what you thought was an easy $200 fix is a few thousand.  Also, research what home insurance will cost you. Home insurance can change from house to house. You may think you are finding the steal of the century, but due to the age or location of the home, your monthly insurance payment will be a lot more.  Taking that into consideration will help you make the best decision for YOU!  All in All: Don’t let these potential costs scare you away from becoming a homeowner. When asked homeowners said they are happier being a homeowner than a renter! The good far outweigh the potential costs.  Just be honest with yourself and take time to research as you begin your home buying journey. Working with a trustworthy lender can help you evaluate your monthly costs and what you can afford. Define what you want to put down. From there, look at how much money that would leave for these potential costs. You know, like changing the locks 😉  Source