Here are four unexpected costs you should budget for when buying a home.

If you’re a first-time homebuyer, here are four unexpected costs you need to budget for when buying your home:

1. Inspection fees. Once you’ve made an offer on a property and have gone under contract, you’ll usually have to pay a professional inspector a couple hundred dollars to give the home a once-over. If they find any problems (e.g., structural issues), you may have to pay another specialist to come in and offer their professional assessment. 

2. Additional cash for the closing table. Buyers are often surprised by the additional cash beyond the closing costs that they need to bring to the closing table. For example, many lenders require you to pay a year’s worth of taxes and mortgage costs up front. If the seller prepaid any taxes or HOA dues, you’ll have to pay them the prorated amount for the rest of the year or quarter. 

3. Moving costs. Once you close on the home, you have to pay for the actual move, and that cost will vary considerably depending on where you live, how far you’re moving, and how much stuff you’ll need to haul. In general, you should expect to pay at least a few thousand dollars if you hire professional movers. 

“Buyers are often surprised by the additional cash beyond the closing costs that they need to bring to the closing table.”

4. Immediate costs. While you may be able to put off renovations or new furniture purchases, there are some costs you’ll have to face right away. For instance, you’ll probably want to hire a locksmith to change the locks, and there could be deposits and/or setup fees for getting your utilities started. As a new homeowner, you’ll also be on the hook for routine and unplanned home maintenance. You should expect something to break or need replacing within the first year, so establish an emergency savings account with at least six months’ worth of expenses in case your water heater stops working. This way, you won’t have to use credit cards to cover unexpected costs, and you can spend time enjoying being a homeowner rather than worrying about how you’ll be able to afford it. 

If you have any other home-buying questions or real estate needs at all, drop us a line or send us an email. We’re here to help you and those you care about move with confidence.