Central Valley Real Estate Blog Learn more about the Central Valley Real Estate market including what's happening in Pleasanton Ca, Dublin CA, Livermore Ca and surrounding areas

real estate news


Are you planning on purchasing your first home?

As a first-time buyer, you might be surprised by some of the home buyer's costs you will regularly need to pay. While some monthly housing expenses, like your mortgage payments, are apparent, they aren't your only costs.

When buying, it's easy to overlook expenses for first-time buyers. We are providing this information so you can create a budgeting plan that will work.

Let's examine all the first-time home-buying expenses you'll need to know.

Closing Costs

The final stage when buying a home is closing, which includes paying costs. Closing costs can include:

  • Title insurance
  • Property taxes
  • Loan origination
  • Mortgage interest
  • Legal fees

These things can be included in closing costs, amounting to 3% or 4% of the purchase price.

Property Taxes

Property taxes will be due every year on your home. The amount you have to pay depends on your location and is based on the value of your home.

You can appeal your tax assessment if you believe your property taxes are higher than they should be.

The taxes you pay are based on your assessed value which may be higher than expected. You must compare your assessment to similar properties to ensure you're fairly taxed.


Maintaining your home can include cleaning gutters and caring for your yard, to larger unexpected projects.

You should expect to budget for at least 1% of the home's value to cover these costs yearly.

It also helps to budget some of your yearly income into an emergency fund if a significant expense, like replacing the heating system, pops up.


While you may not consider the cost of utilities, this could cost similar to property taxes. The costs of utilities can vary depending on your location, the size of the home, and the appliances you have.

Many home buyers will ask the seller for their yearly heat and electric bills before purchasing. They might not be identical to what you'll spend but will at least give you a ballpark to consider.

Homeowners Insurance

When you use a mortgage to buy your home, the lender will require you to have insurance. But even if you are a cash buyer, getting insurance is a wise precaution.

Choose an insurance policy to give you the full cost of damaged or stolen items. Some insurance plans will only give you the depreciated value of any items you claim for.

It can help to reduce your home insurance bill by bundling it with your car insurance provider.


If your home's heating, ventilation, and air conditioning systems are constantly running, you can expect them to require repairs at some point.

With air conditioning running constantly, it will also increase your electricity use, increasing utility costs.

Maintenance of these systems can also be expensive. You could pay at least $150 per hour for a technician to look at your system.

Yard Maintenance

Most houses will need some money to maintain the yard. If the home is on a more considerable lot, this will require more of your time and money.

If the home has a large lawn, you will need a lawnmower or hire someone to take care of it. It will also mean trips to eliminate yard waste and other expenses.

The Roof

Your home inspection should give you an idea of the roof's age. But even a fairly new roof might need repairs, and older ones are more likely to leak.

Different roofing types will last longer than others. For example, an asphalt shingle roof might only last as little as 12 years and could cost more than $10,000.

You want to know the signs that your roof replacement may soon be necessary.


Contact Us

At Valleywide Realty, we specialize in the Central Valley real estate market.

To speak with us about buying or selling a home, contact us today by clicking here.