️ 15 Hidden Costs When Buying a Home
Often called 'closing costs', here is a list of common expenses often overlooked by first-time home-buyers.
1. Home Inspection Fee
Cost: $300 - $1,000
Generally one of the conditions of the sale, having a home inspection done can help save you from unexpected 'surprises'.
Cost: 5% or more of the purchase price
Put down within 24 hours of the seller accepting your offer, the deposit is credited in full towards the sale of the house. It can reduce the cost of the interest on your mortgage.
3. Appraisal Fee
Cost: $250 - $500
May or may not be required by your lender to determine the value of the home.
4. Land Survey
Cost: $1,000 - $2,000
If the property doesn't already have one, your lender may require you to get one.
5. Legal Fees
Cost: $900 - $2,000
A real estate lawyer, or notary, takes care of the paperwork. They also will check if there are any claims on the property.
6. Land Transfer Tax
Cost: 0.5% - 2.5% of property value
This is paid to the province or territory. There also may be a municipal land transfer tax. Some provinces have a new home buyer incentive where you get reimbursed for the fee.
7. New Home Warranties
Cost: $300 - $2,000
Only on NEW builds, the warranty insures against work and material defects, including structural abnormalities.
8. Mortgage Default Insurance
Cost: 2.5 - 4% of mortgage value
Required if you make a down payment of less than 20%. It protects the lender should you are unable to make payments.
9. Mortgage Life Insurance
Covers the cost of the mortgage should you die. In most cases, it is a better financial decision to get life insurance that covers the mortgage cost than to purchase mortgage insurance.
10. Title Insurance
Cost: $100 - $500
Protects you from title defects, omissions, errors, and from heirs who might try to claim your property.
11. Home Insurance
Cost: Shop around!
It covers damage related to your home, such as fires. Most lenders will not offer you a mortgage without this.
12. Sales Tax
Cost: i.e. 15% HST
Only charged on NEW homes. Just like buying goods and services, you have to pay the sales tax of your region on a new property/house.
13. Utilities and Property Taxes
If the previous owner pays for any utilities and property taxes after the closing date, you will be required to reimburse them.
14. Moving Costs
Cost: $40+ per hour
Depends on the size of the place being moved and distance between locations.
15. Miscellaneous Costs
Other costs to consider include renovations, new appliances, service hook-up fees, condo fees, and landscaping equipment.