Maintenance Costs that Surprise First-Time Homebuyers
Whether you’re buying a starter home or have found the home of your dreams, real estate is one of the best investments you can make. Owning a home is a big responsibility with hidden expenditures that sometimes catch first-time buyers off guard. Here are a few home maintenance costs to be prepared for when buying a house.
Lawn Maintenance Costs
If you’ve only lived in an apartment, you might not be used to keeping up with a yard. Keeping the lawn mowed, trees pruned, and weeds pulled can cost a lot of time and money. Plan ahead and designate part of your budget for routine lawn maintenance and to deal with unexpected issues like fallen trees. High-quality landscaping will have a positive impact on your home’s value, but it may also require hiring help.
One of the most important home maintenance costs is keeping your roof in good shape. The roof protects the structure of your home along with your family and belongings. Serious roofing issues can make a building uninhabitable, and these problems worsen with time. When you have your home inspection done, pay close attention to the condition of the roof. If your inspector finds major problems, you might renegotiate the price of the house and plan for a new roof.
Home HVAC Repairs and Maintenance
There are very few climates so mild that you won’t need air conditioning or heating at some point during the year. When you first buy a home, pay attention to the state of the HVAC system. Change the filters monthly and at least annually you’ll need to have a tune-up on the system. Plan your budget in advance so you can afford maintenance on your HVAC unit.
Termites can damage a home structurally, making it unsafe, but other types of bugs and rodents can impact the livability of your home too. Whether it’s mice chewing through wires or ants in the kitchen, chances are you’ll have to deal with pest control issues at some point. Fortunately, you can help mitigate the problem by having regular inspections scheduled with an exterminator. Being proactive will help keep costs down on this type of home maintenance.
Home Security Systems
A security system can be a costly investment, but one that’s worth it. Many modern security systems require annual or monthly subscriptions. With time, you may feel the need to add more cameras around your property. Shop for a security system that meets your needs and your budget.
Home maintenance costs can be surprising to new homeowners, and these are just some of the expenses you can expect when investing in real estate. Take time to create a budget that allows for improvements and maintenance costs.