4 Things First Time Home Buyers Are Never Prepared For

Buying a home for the first time is an exciting part of life. After renting or living with family, it’s finally time to have your own place. What once seemed like a dream can quickly become a reality once you find the perfect place — after your offer gets accepted and you eventually close. Having keys in hand and walking through your home for the first time is so gratifying.

However, a few things can quickly bring your head out of the clouds if you aren’t in the know. Of course, owning a home is well worth the investment in yourself and your future, but that doesn’t mean it can’t come with some unexpected costs and roadblocks. But don't worry, we're here to help you navigate the road ahead! Here are four things first-time homeowners should always be prepared for (just in case!):

Budgeting for Unexpected Repairs 

If the dishwasher breaks, the roof leaks, or you have a light fixture on the fritz, you no longer have a landlord to call. That responsibility now falls on you as a homeowner. Although some things are inexpensive to fix, other issues can break the bank, especially if you don’t have the funds to cover the repairs. Many home repairs are timely, and hiring an expert such as a plumber or electrician to evaluate and fix problems — even small ones — can cost hundreds of dollars.

Experiencing DIY Overload

One of the best parts about owning a home is that you get to make it your own. Planning to paint, remodel, and plant a garden are all ways that you can let your personality shine through in your new dwelling. However, as time passes, you may lose momentum as projects consume your free time. 

DIY tasks can be a major time investment. Buyers arent't always prepared for how much time, energy, and money those projects might end up taking. Homeowners don’t always factor in the effort it takes to run back and forth to the home improvement store for supplies, so it’s wise to build in extra time, especially when tackling what seems like a weekend project.

Maintaining the Outside

Unless you’re buying a condo or townhouse, it’s essential to schedule time to take care of the outdoors. Even regular run-of-the-mill tasks like mowing the lawn or shoveling snow can become unexpected responsibilities for first-time homeowners. Of course, you can always hire maintenance services. When it snows, a neighborhood child may shovel your driveway to raise funds. However, if you choose to do these tasks yourself, there is also the expense of purchasing equipment.

Paying Annual Fees

In addition to your monthly mortgage, it’s vital to fit other expenses into your overall budget. Matt Teifke is a real estate investor and broker, and he says that these reparations are the true cost of home ownership. “Owning a home is expensive,” he says. “There are mortgage payments, property taxes, insurance, maintenance, and repairs.” These things can add up quickly and catch first-time homebuyers off guard. The good news is depending on your lender, they can roll property taxes and insurance payments into one monthly payment. 

Originally Published at Apartment Therapy: https://www.apartmenttherapy.com/things-homeowners-never-prepare-37180426

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