Buying a house sounds like an exciting adventure to get into as you enter the next chapter of your life. However, do you actually know what it entails to buy a house? There are various hidden costs that go along with becoming a homeowner you may not have considered before.
If you’re getting ready to upgrade from your apartment or are moving out of your parent’s house, take a look at some of these unexpected responsibilities of becoming a homeowner.
You’ll Now Have Trash, Water, and Sewage Bills
Several apartment complexes, and even landlords, typically offer to include water, trash, and sewage for free with the rental agreement. Other times they charge a small monthly fee that lumps all three of these into one extra bill.
As a homeowner, you’ll now have to remember to pay a few extra bills each month.
Property Tax Is Now An Expense
If you’ve never owned a house before, then you’ve definitely never had to think about paying property taxes. You’ll want to make sure you never miss a payment on this because if you stop paying, extra interest will be added to the amount you initially owed. Plus, the government could eventually become involved and put a lien, or a legal claim, on your home.
Repairs Are Your Responsibility
Whenever you live in an apartment and something goes wrong, you call your landlord. When you’d have a leaky faucet, a drip from your ceiling, or an outlet that doesn’t work, you would simply put in a maintenance request. Then someone would be at your apartment in one or two days to fix it, free of charge.
However, now that you are looking to become a homeowner, there will now be the extra responsibility to handle any major exterior repairs, such as hiring a professional for stucco remediation on gaps around the doors and windows or for wood rot within the walls of your house.
I lived in an apartment once where there was an infestation of termites that took over the walls. What did I do? I called my landlord and they handled scheduling pest control to come. They even set up the tenants with a place to stay while the house was being fumigated.
Becoming a homeowner means that any infestation of ants or termites in your house will now become your responsibility to handle. You’ll need to find a pest control company and find proper housing during any fumigation if necessary.
Watering, Mowing, and Maintaining the Lawn
If landscaping has never been something you enjoyed, you might look into hiring someone to manage it. You might be used to having to mow the lawn every once in a while at your parent’s house, but any extra work will now be something to take into consideration for your new home.
This also means that your water bill may be higher than what you are previously used to since you’ll have more to care for.
Schedule Snow Removal
This doesn’t apply to every person, depending on where you live. If you do end up buying a house where you experience winter, you’re going to want to schedule snow removal or a plow truck to take care of your driveway.
Usually, the city takes care of the main roads so that won’t be as big of a concern. However, if you have a long driveway, get ready to shovel if you don’t plan on hiring someone to plow.
Clean Your Gutters
This is an essential task for any homeowner. If you don’t clean your gutters, there are several problems that could arise.
For one, you may have an infestation of mosquitos during the warmer weather due to standing water from fallen debris that has clogged up the flow of your gutters. In the wintertime when there are below-freezing temperatures, the water could freeze which can do tremendous damage to your roof.
These responsibilities are just a few you can expect when becoming a homeowner. Make sure to do your research when doing your budget to consider all extra expenses you may incur. This will help you decide if you can financially manage to buy and own a house for the long term.