What Are the Common Expenses as a Homeowner?
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Common Costs of Homeownership

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Becoming a first-time homeowner is exciting, and it’s nice to finally see your payments going toward building equity. While you’ve likely spent hours researching how to budget for a down payment and calculate how much of a mortgage you can afford, it’s common to overlook some other essential expenses. Thinking about these common expenses homeowners face helps you continue to plan financially for your life in your new home.

Property Taxes

The property taxes on your home are calculated based on the value of your property and the current rate in your location. Typically, you’ll make these payments monthly to your lender, who will hold them in an escrow account until the tax payment is due. 

As a new homeowner, the important thing to note is that property taxes can vary over time. Increases are likely to occur whenever there’s a new tax assessment done in your community. Your home’s value may rise due to general market dynamics or if you make substantial enhancements to the floor plan or general design.

Pool & Landscaping Services

Living in California sometimes feels like a pool is practically mandatory for homeowners. While you don’t necessarily need a pool, you’ll want to consider the cost of its upkeep if your new home has one. 

Landscaping costs can also add up. For instance, you may need to pay for lawn mowing, fertilizing, and other common landscaping tasks. While making sure the companies you hire are reputable and carry workers’ compensation insurance is helpful for preventing problems, you might also want to ensure you carry personal liability coverage if you have workers visiting your property regularly.

HOA Dues

Being in an HOA community has benefits that include lowering your homeowners insurance costs due to potential safety features that prevent crime, such as security gates. You can also trust that your property values will stay higher when everyone commits to following the community’s standards. However, the benefits an HOA provides aren’t free. Depending on where you live, HOA dues may range from a few hundred dollars to a couple of thousand dollars annually.

Exterior Enhancements

Few homes are perfect from move-in day. Many homeowners make updates to the exterior of their properties to ensure they maintain their curb appeal. Or you might prefer to have a deck where you can entertain your family and friends. Outdoor kitchens are another common outdoor remodeling project new homeowners undertake in the first year.

Saving for Emergency Repairs

In the first year of living in your home, you may know very little about its history. You may also still be building up your savings after putting money down on a house. Making sure to also put some funds aside each month to cover issues such as a burst pipe or broken HVAC system gives you a cushion during a sudden home emergency. You’ll also want to keep your insurance policy up to date, which can help you if the damage is related to a covered peril.

For reliable, affordable home insurance, San Diego homeowners know they can trust Altra Insurance Services. We also provide renters, commercial, motorcycle, and auto insurance. You can receive a free quote by calling one of our friendly agents today.

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