Homeowner Expense Calculator
What this calculator does for you:
Consumers often don't consider all the expenses of homeowning,
so after they buy a home they have trouble making ends meet. Other
online calculators don't tell you all of the costs, perhaps because they
were designed by real estate professionals who want to make sales.
Use this calculator before you buy any home, so you can
estimate your expenses and judge its affordability.
Let's say you want to buy a home costing
$ , and
a lender gives you a -year
1. Your up-front one-time expenses are:
in closing costs,
for a mortgage downpayment,
in moving expenses, and
for a home inspection.
2. Your recurring expenses are:
% of home value yearly for PMI
(while your home equity is < 20 %),
% for repairs and maintenance,
% for property taxes,
per month for utilities,
$ monthly in owner association dues
Now we're ready to see how much it will all cost! If you plan to own your home for
in up-front costs,
in mortgage payments of
in PMI payments,
in repairs & maintenance,
in property taxes,
in homeowners insurance
in association dues.
total cost over those years.
(Note: These expenses can be partially offset by deducting mortgage interest, as shown in the
Mortgage Deduction Calculator. To compare renting costs to these homeowning costs
(including what you'll
gain from the sale of your home when you move out) see the Buy-Or-Rent Calculator.)
How To Save Hundreds On Home Insurance
1. Home security upgrades. Save up to 15-20%.
Get dead-bolt locks and a burglar alarm (preferably one
that's monitored 24/7).
2. Fire-fighting upgrades. Save up to 10%.
Fire alarms and extinguishers are worthwhile. A sprinkler system is
an excellent (but costly) upgrade.
3. Raise your deductible. Save 15-25%.
Raising your deductible can save big money, especially
if it's currently lower than $200.
4. Drop unneeded coverage. Save up to 20%. Eliminate
any "riders" or "floater" clauses that cover
unlikely losses. Insurance should cover no more than the
rebuilding cost -- don't include the value of the
5. Shop around. Save up to 20%.
Home insurance prices from different companies
can vary widely, so shop around for a lower rate at sites
such as InsWeb.com,
6. Loyalty discounts. Save up to 20%.
Most companies offer a
longevity discount for people who stick with them. Often
it's a 5% discount for staying 3-5 years, and a 10%
discount after six years. Retirees
often get an additional 10% discount.
7. Avoid risk.
Avoid anything that increases the
risk perceived by your insurer (for example a lower credit score, or keeping
a dangerous pit bull, or having an accident-prone swimming pool.)
8. Claims-free discount. Save 10-15%.
If you avoid burglaries and don't make an insurance claim for three to five years
you may get this discount.
9. Block watches. Save 5-10%.
If you organize a block watch, insurance rates and the
crime rate will both go down in your neighborhood.
10. Live in a safe home. Save up to 20%.
Newer homes have fewer problems. In windstorm-prone
areas, consider brick homes; in earthquake zones, wood frames
stand up better. Avoid flood-prone areas.
Call your insurer and consult with them. Tell
them about your home improvement plans, make sure you're
adequately covered, and be sure to ask what other discounts they