Now that you’ve successfully saved the down payment for your first home, you’ve achieved a major financial goal. So what additional housing-related expenses, other than your mortgage, do you need to consider?
A home inspection by a qualified home inspector will reveal if a property has issues, such as a foundation leak, that are not obvious during a viewing. Ideally, do this before making an offer.
As the buyer of a new home, some of the most common costs you’ll incur when the purchase closes are:
Note that realtor commissions are paid by the seller.
Protect your home and its contents by purchasing insurance.
This may include the cost of renting a truck or van, if you’re moving yourself, or hiring a moving company, plus the cost of boxes and other packaging materials.
The one-time cost of hooking up your various utilities such as electricity, gas, cable, internet, and landline (if you’re getting one).
You may choose to direct Canada Post to forward your mail for the next 3 or 6 months to your new address.
If the seller neglected basic maintenance and repairs, you may have to spend some money immediately: repairing a broken step or railing, replacing a dripping faucet or non-functioning light fixtures, even repairing or replacing the roof.
Unless your new home is in “move-in condition”, you may be considering minor or even major renovations to make it more livable. Or perhaps you’d like to repaint, re-carpet, and change window covers or light fixtures to better suit your style. Some of the furniture from your previous home may work in the spaces of your new home. But for the rooms where you can’t reuse old furniture, consider buying second hand or even borrowing pieces before going out and buying new. If major appliances, like washers and dryers, refrigerators, or dishwashers were excluded from the home purchase, they will have to be replaced.
The down payment is a major milestone but it’s also just the start of the cost of homeownership.