The True Cost of Home Ownership
Buying a home costs more than just what you put down on the home and the monthly mortgage payment. That’s why it’s important for real estate agents to educate their clients on the exact costs of a buying a home. Here are many of the costs homeowners should expect.
DOWN PAYMENT On a conventional loan, the down payment of a home is around 20% of the home’s selling price. However, the mortgage lender usually determines this fee.
EARNEST MONEY DEPOSIT Along with the down payment on the home, most lenders require a money deposit. This shows the seller that the buyer is serious about wanting to purchase the property. If the offer falls through, the buyer may not be able to get their deposit back. However, during the closing period, this money is merged with the down payment. It is around 1-3% of the offer price.
APPRAISAL FEES Appraisal fees pay an appraiser to look at the home and determine the value of the property. This appraisal is used to determine how much a lender will provide for a mortgage.
INSPECTIONS A buyer should (and is sometimes required to) have a home inspected before they purchase the home. These inspections ensure that the home’s foundation, structure, systems and appliances are in working condition.
STANDARD ON-GOING EXPENSES
- PITI: Principle, Interest, Taxes, and Insurance – in short, your note. Ask your lender what the estimated PITI will be on your potential home purchase before putting in your offer. Your Principle and interest will stay the same for the life of the loan. The taxes and insurance are open to fluctuation.
- HOA: Home Owners Association fees – Basically, these cover your common areas. In a small, suburban neighborhood with few amenities it may only be a few hundred dollars a year. In a gated community or high-end condo in town, that cost can quickly escalate to over a thousand. Pay attention when comparing properties; many will have special assessments – one more bill –while some may include trash pick-up or water – a few less.
OTHER ON-GOING EXPENSES
- Includes interior and exterior maintenance along with front and backyard
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