Monday, February 21, 2011

6 Home Expenses You'll Want to Be Aware of Before Buying Your Lexington Home!

Buying a home in Lexington MA can be a very exciting time! If you’re moving from out of state or from a town nearby; I’m glad you’ve chosen to make Lexington your new home. There are endless things to do in this charming city, and a vibrant history to add to its appeal. Perhaps you’ve been renting in Lexington and are venturing out to buy your first home; which can be an exciting and overwhelming all at the same time! No matter the circumstances; buying a home in Lexington will prove to be a great decision for years to come!

If you are a first time home buyer, or have not interacted with the Lexington Real Estate market in some time; you’ll want to be sure to put first things first. Adding up your monthly expenses is essential to knowing how much home you can afford. Some of the expenses you’ll need to calculate are obvious, while others may catch you off guard. To avoid any surprises; I’ve gathered six home expenses of which you’ll want to be aware. Take a look!

1. Property Taxes- Your taxes are typically generated from the assessed value of your home, which is different from the number you’re used to seeing in the appraised value. Taxes can add hundreds of dollars onto your monthly payment, so be sure you know the final amount before you sign on a home in Lexington.

2. Insurance- Insurance is vital in the home buying process. Not only will a deal not go through without it, but you want to be sure to shop around for the best option. The home insurance covers the basics of theft and fire, but does not cover flood damage which is something you may want to consider if your home is on a lower plane. Consider joining your home insurance with your car insurance for an even better deal.

3. Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI)- You may be required to pay the bill for PMI if your down payment is less than 20% of the home value. Private mortgage insurance is important as it protects the lender again defaulting on your loan, but is not required. The monthly payment will depend on the size of your loan.

4. Homeowner's Association Fees- HOA fees typically only apply in a condo community, but can also be found in some subdivisions so you’ll want to be sure to ask about those upfront. These fees are paid on a monthly or yearly basis depending on the development, but oftentimes include many perks that you’ll enjoy such as snow removal, or a gym membership!

5. Maintenance- While your favored Lexington home may look perfect on the surface; you’ll want to be prepared for the home inspection results. There can be hidden problems that can demand attention right when you move in. You can talk with your Lexington Real Estate agent about factoring the home inspection and any major repairs into the final Lexington home price. Being prepared for regular home maintenance is also crucial. Again, if you’re moving from an apartment, this is something you may not be used to; so having a realistic view of a home and the maintenance that is required will help you prepare for the additional costs.

6. Utilities- First time home buyers are often struck by the difference from apartment utilities to home utilities. You can request an average of what utilities for the house you are looking at typically cost, but you’ll want to be prepared for the increase. Of course, there are eco-friendly ways to cut down on the cost of your utility bill that are worth pursuing!

Of course, if you have any questions about any of these home costs; please let me know! If you are in the beginning stages of looking for a home in Lexington and have not yet found a Lexington Real Estate agent; I would love to help! I have years of experience in the Lexington Real Estate market and can give you insight into the best neighborhoods, schools and any other information you would want to know about life in Lexington. Please feel free to contact me anytime!

Theresa D'Antuono

Lexington MA Real Estate Agent
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