There are many home maintenance costs that may surprise first-time homebuyers. First-time homebuyers should know about potential costs and financially prepare for them. Owning a home requires much more than paying a mortgage. There are many other costs involved, like maintenance, repairs, and taxes.
First-Time Homebuyers Should Replace the Locks
The first home maintenance project for any new homeowner is changing the locks. You never know who has a key to the current locks. While this project may cost upwards of $200 dollars, it is an important precaution to keep your family and home safe. Other safety costs, like home security systems, can be a large expense. Research these options so you can prepare for the fees before you move in.
Lawn Care and Home Maintenance Costs
Another cost first-time homeowners experience is the cost of lawn care and maintenance. New homeowners who are transitioning from renting to owning are often unprepared for lawn care costs. Invest in lawn care tools and machinery if you want to complete this work yourself. Some homeowners chose to use professional lawn care services, which can be an even larger expense. Tree maintenance and removal is a hefty yard care expense that may arise.
HVAC System Costs
HVAC costs can surprise new homeowners. HVAC systems provide heating and cooling, so they are crucial for home comfort. A full HVAC replacement can cost upwards of $10,000 dollars. Performing regular maintenance can prevent having to replace the system prematurely. It costs around $100, twice a year, so it is well worth the small expense.
Additionally, be prepared to repair existing appliances in the home. While your new house may be fully fitted with appliances, it does not always mean these appliances are efficient and in the best working condition. Set aside money for repairs and replacements.
Home Maintenance Costs to Prevent Problems
Preventative measures are necessary costs for first-time homebuyers who want to save money in the long run. Pay close attention to water issues around your home, as they can cause extensive damage. If you are concerned about an issue potentially causing damage to your home, it is best to take action sooner rather than later. Have the gutters cleaned, the water heater flushed, and the property inspected for pests regularly.
Property taxes can be a surprising cost for first-time homeowners. Renovations, like putting in a bathroom, building a deck, or renovating a kitchen, can raise your property taxes. Also, changes in your local real estate market can raise or lower your taxes. Don’t expect them to remain the same year after year.
You can get a better idea of upcoming costs by having a home inspection when you buy a home. A professional inspector will provide details on the condition of various aspects of the home and how to maintain them.