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Home >> Daily Dose >> The Hidden Costs of Owning a Home
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The Hidden Costs of Owning a Home

rowofhomesThere’s more to the cost of owning the home than mortgage and down payment of a house.  According to a survey by personal finance website, Bankrate.com, The average U.S. homeowner spends an average of approximately $2,000 per year on maintenance services alone.

The survey found that at least three in five homeowners or 63 percent used at least one recurring home maintenance provider, while 35 percent used two. The survey asked homeowners about the price they paid to maintain eight programs that included, housekeeping, homeowners association dues, landscaping, home security systems, pool care, snow removal, septic services, and private trash/recycling collection.

At an average monthly cost of $285, housekeeping was the most expensive maintenance cost paid by homeowners followed by home association dues at $210. The survey found that home security systems ($130) cost a little more than pool maintenance ($123) per month.

“These figures illustrate the hidden costs of homeownership, and it’s important to note they don’t include repairs such as a broken refrigerator, washing machine or air conditioner,” said Taylor Tepper, analyst at Bankrate.com. “These are just ongoing, routine tasks like keeping your house and yard clean.”

The survey also found that renters paid less for most of these recurring expenses. For renters, housekeeping costs were almost halved at $128 per month, while the average amount spent on home association dues came to $71 per month. Pool maintenance ($70) and landscaping ($61) were also much lesser than what homeowners paid during a month. However, renters paid more than homeowners for security systems ($142) and septic services ($113).

Despite the lower costs, the survey found that only 37 percent renters hired someone to help with any of these tasks. While 20 percent of renters hired someone for private trash/recycling, 13 percent hired help for landscaping and 7 percent for housekeeping, spending approximately $550 per year on these amenities.

About Author: Radhika Ojha

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Radhika Ojha, Online Editor at the Five Star Institute, is a graduate of the University of Pune, India, where she received her B.A. in Commerce with a concentration in Accounting and Marketing and an M.A. in Mass Communication. Upon completion of her master’s degree, Ojha worked at a national English daily publication in India (The Indian Express) where she was a staff writer in the cultural and arts features section. Ojha also worked as Principal Correspondent at HT Media Ltd and at Honeywell as an executive in corporate communications. She and her husband currently reside in Dallas, Texas. You can contact her at [email protected]

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