The True Cost of Homeownership

by Mike Yeo on March 10, 2012

If your market is a Buyer’s market right now, I am sure you have thoughts about homeownership. It is typically a good time to buy because Sellers are reducing prices to attract buyers. But before you take the plunge into homeownership, note that it will cost you more than just the monthly mortgage payments alone.

When renting, all you typically would put aside on your monthly budget would be the rent payments. If the fridge breaks down, or the window breaks, all you would do is to pick up the phone and call the management. Someone will fix the leaky faucet or broken door. On the other hand, when you own your own home and if you have a tight budget to live with, chances are Murphy will move into your spare bedroom. So, the cost of homeownership suddenly does not smell as rosy anymore. It’s not just in the monthly payments.

Cost of Homeownership - Not rent for mortgageWhen you own your own home, be it your first home or your move-up home, your mentality about “stuff” around the house changes. It is not going to be Aunt Beth’s couch, or Grandma Perkey’s dining table. These furniture are just not going to cut it. Hmmmm…. our style is more electic, or more contemporary, French Country, etc…….. Hand-me downs and mis-matched stuff just do not quite suit the taste. So, out you go to the local furniture store to find you the set of leather couch or plasma TV that you want. So, again, it’s not just in the monthly payments.

Or how about this? Assuming you are doing the best you can with Uncle Rob’s bed and your best friend’s sofa, you have the “need” of a shelf above the laundry sink to drip dry some good clothing. Or picking the brand-new never lived in house….. You have to buy window coverings. Even those temporary ones cost over $5 a piece and how many windows do you have in your new home? I know because I have experienced it. Home Depot and Lowes become your second home. So, again, it’s not just in the monthly payments.

I am not even going to there about entertaining family and friends in your new backyard. You get the picture.

I help pursue the American dream. But I want clients and buyers to know that there is a real cost of homeownership that goes beyond just making the monthly payments. It is real. Cost of Homeownership is really 30-35% more than your rent.

Renting temporarily is not a sin. It might be the smarter thing to do.

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Nate Konopka March 15, 2012 at 7:08 pm

I appreciate your honesty. I thought owning a home was going to be a lot more glamorous but instead it just costs a lot more money. On the flip side, I am proud to be a home owner and one day I will own it and have no rent or mortgage to pay!!


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