6 Hidden costs of buying a home

6 Hidden costs of buying a home

Last updated on 21st January, 2019 at 08:49 am

The cost of purchasing property could be as much as 10% more than the asking price. Make sure you know what you’re in for with our list of extra costs and fees.

1. Admin costs

Administrative costs will have to come from your savings, and can include a deposit, transfer duty tax, transfer attorney costs, building insurance, life insurance, home contents insurance, bond attorney costs and bond administration fees, if you’re the buyer.

If you’re the seller, you should make provision for the estate agent’s fee, as well as for the various inspections (electrical, gas, plumbing, beetle, electric fences), which are a part of the offer to purchase.

2. Structural issues

It’s hard to know what’s hiding behind every wardrobe, in the ceilings or under the floors, so rely on a thorough seller’s report or get a construction expert to do a survey. By spending some money now, you’ll avoid headaches later.

Sellers are obliged to declare patent and latent defects pertaining to: electrical systems, roof leaks, plumbing, air-conditioning, under-floor heating, cracks, mould, flooding, dampness and more. Make sure you get this in writing and signed by the seller.

3. What’s included and what’s not

Traditionally, any fixture to the house – from curtain rails and light fittings to air-conditioners – may not be removed when a house is sold. Make your own inventory of what should stay and get your agent to insist the seller agrees to this.

4. Upscaling

Moving into a bigger home? Then expect all costs to rise: rates and taxes, electricity usage, water bill, garden maintenance and more.

5. Sectional title

The value of your property is dependent on how well the complex is run. Before you buy, put on your detective cap and ask the body corporate some tough questions about rules and regulations, and request to see the latest financials. Also ask for an update on special levies for building alterations or painting. Such costs will be for the buyer unless agreed otherwise.

 6. Security costs

Security is a personal choice, so even if there are measures in place, consider what will make you feel safe. You might need to set money aside to increase the security to your satisfaction.

Earn tier points! How safe is your home? Complete our online home safety questionnaire and earn 3 000 tier points. Click here to get started.

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