What Are The True Costs Of Buying A Home?

additional costs of buying a home san diegoIt’s time to buy your first home. You’ve saved up for your down payment and gotten a pre approval from a lender.  You’ve got a great realtor and  are ready to find the perfect home.  Once your offer is accepted, you’ll need to be aware of additional out-of-pocket costs you will incur over up to, and immediately after closing, some you may already know, some not:

Home Inspection

Having a home inspection is not required, but it is something you should definitely have done.  Costs vary, but generally average around $375, depending on square footage and services added.


Your lender will order the appraisal and you normally will have to pay for it upfront.  Expect somewhere between $400-$500 for single family home.

Homeowner’s Insurance

You are required to purchase homeowner’s insurance in order to close on your home.  This protects you, as well as your lender from the inevitable. Homeowner’s insurance prices vary from $700-$1500.  Basic insurance coverage for the area you want to live in may not be adequate.  For example, if you live in an area designated as a flood zone or fire zone, you should insurance for those as well.

Additional Repairs/Improvements

Sometimes, sellers won’t or aren’t financially able to assist with repairs so they sell the house as-is.  If you really want the house, you might need to save money for things you will need to do in order to make the house livable or updated to your tastes. Make this budget beforehand for unexpected repairs or home improvements you want to make. This could be adding a fresh coat of paint, new carpet or adding in hardwood floors, is a good idea.  Costs can vary widely.


Normally all appliances are included by the seller, with the exception of the refrigerator and washer/dryer. This is normally written into some real estate contracts as being sold with the property. With that in mind, plan ahead to have money budgeted for a refrigerator, washer/dryer.  If you like some of the seller’s appliances, specify which ones you’d like to remain since everything is negotiable.


Whether you’re hiring a company or renting a truck, moving costs can be more than you think. If costs of buying a homeyou are renting hourly, build in an additional two hours to your projected costs. Don’t forget to include in your budget calculations, the deposit, which although you get it back, can temporarily decrease the cash in your pocket.

Utilities & Security Alarm

Depending on your credit, some utility companies require deposits and there may be other miscellaneous fees to transfer or start services.  Costs will vary.

Move in Day!

After closing, you may want to visit the house and start cleaning before you have the movers or your rental truck arrive.  It’s much easier to do this before all your stuff arrives. Remember to include cleaning supplies or the cost of a cleaning service in the budget.  Don’t forget your toiletries, light bulbs and extra batteries.


Depending on your agreement with the seller, blinds are not always included in the sale. If not, now you feel as though you’re living in a fish bowl. Putting up old sheets in your brand new home is no good and a huge eye sore for your new neighbors. Visit your local home improvement store for temporary blinds.  Temporary blinds cost around $12 and up.

Rekeying your Home

Before you get handed keys for your new home, keep in mind how many other hands they have been in during the whole process. It ranges from the sellers, to real estate agents, to contractors, utility companies, etc. Don’t risk it, have you home rekeyed. Costs for rekeying all your locks by a locksmith can run anywhere from $75-$200.

New Furniture

Shopping for new furniture for your new house can be fun and exciting. If you are moving into a bigger space, you may not know how little furniture you had until after moving.  Anticipate buying accent chairs, art, rugs, mirrors, etc. Costs vary.

Happy House Hunting!


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