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Costs of Owning Surprises Some Buyers

A small survey of first-time home buyers found that more than half of the families were surprised at how expensive it was to own a home, even though 88 percent believed they had done a good estimate of the costs.

The study for BBVA Compass, a lender based in Alabama, concluded that most lenders don’t warn buyers that there will be costs beyond principal, interest, taxes, and insurance.

Among those costs are utilities. The U.S. Department of Energy reported that the typical family spends $1,900 a year – $158 per month – on things like heat, air conditioning and power.

The National Association of Home Builders calculated that the typical buyer of a new home spends about $8,640 within the first 12 months for furnishings, appliances, and home repairs and fix-ups, while the typical buyer of a resale home spends $6,540.

Source: United Feature Syndicate, Lew Sichelman (06/06/2010)

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