Hidden Fees When Buying a Home
There are several fees to remember when buying a house. Once you find your dream home and your offer is accepted, things will begin to move at a fast pace. It is important to know up front about any out-of-pocket expenses, as this can have an impact on everything from your daily finances to your loan approval.
Here are 5 “hidden fees” to remember when budgeting for your new home.
Inspections are one of the most important parts of the home buying process. Buyers should consider hiring licensed contractors to conduct inspections as only a licensed contractor can give an expert opinion. Another option is to hire an all-in-one home inspector that will perform a very thorough inspection of all of the home’s components and will then recommend a licensed contractor to examine further as needed.
Licensed contractors may charge a little more for their expert opinion and can be more difficult to schedule for inspections.
Home inspection companies will charge based on square footage and may have additional fees for crawl spaces, driving distance, or other services. Be aware that some home inspection companies offer optional services as up-sell items.
Your closing attorney will charge fees to complete the title search and transfer, and will offer insurance on the new title policy for an additional fee. (Note: Title insurance may be optional at times, but is always recommended for the buyer’s protection). Consult with your closing attorney for their fee schedule.
If obtaining a loan, you may be required to get an appraisal on your property before completing the sale. This will depend on the type of financing and/or your lender’s rules. If required, your lender will order a third-party appraiser to determine the value of the property. If the appraisal is within the acceptable range, the loan can continue. If not, you would have to renegotiate the price with the seller or find a new home. Your lender will provide you with more specifics on any appraisal fees.
HOA Transfer Fees
It is common for many neighborhood properties to be a part of a Home Owner’s Association (HOA). Many HOA’s require monthly fees and enforce certain rules and regulations. Consult with your agent and your closing attorney regarding any rules, regulations, monthly fees, deposit fees, transfer fees, or any other fees. It is important to fully understand the HOA’s role in your new property before completing the purchase.
Depending on your unique transaction, there may be other fees involved at closing such as a Brokerage Service Fee. Be sure to consult with your agent regarding any other transaction fees that may appear at closing. These fees are always discussed and agreed to in advance to presenting an offer, but can easily be overlooked or forgotten once everything starts moving quickly.