I’m starting to get cold feet about the whole homeownership idea. (No new developments on the job front, so I’m still not sure whether or not this is a real question, but it’s sure on my mind a fair amount. I’m going to keep calling it a semi-hypothetical.)
The thing is, both everything I read online and my experience of watching my parents have a house indicates to me that it’s way more expensive than it sounds. Just because the mortgage payment says $450 a month doesn’t mean those are your actual costs…. it all makes keeping my $400-with-utilities-included rented room indefinitely sound pretty good.
But I’m having a hard time putting actual figures to this. Based on what a friend of mine spends, I’m guessing $750-800 a month for mortgage, taxes, insurance, and utilities. That’s perfectly doable for me, especially since if I did take a permanent job here it would come with a substantial salary bump. (I also would prefer to have a housemate, so that would help financially, but I’d rather not assume/depend I’d have someone every single month; I want to be able to afford it on my own and have rent be a nice extra.)
And I know closing costs are expensive, but let’s assume those are covered.
What I’m really having trouble imagining are the other “carrying costs” of a house. Those of you who are homeowners, how much do you set aside every month for things like the new roof or the boiler blowing up or the plumber having to remove your kid’s Barbie from an inconvenient pipe? In other words, what goes in your house maintenance fund? What have you had to spend on as a homeowner that you never imagined?
I think I might also have to budget for snow removal, especially if I get a house without a garage….
Y’know, maybe I’ll just stick with the rented room and get a new car, or a dog. Or a new car and a dog.