The Cost of Homeownership:

Unexpected Expenses Plague New Homeowners in First Year

The average homeowner encountered about four surprises or unexpected costs within the first year of homeownership, spending around $3,600 to address them.

Unexpected Expenses

That’s according to a new survey of 2,000 homeowners split evenly by generation, which revealed the top expenses during that first year were appliance replacement (56%), exterior repairs such as windows (53%), and major repairs like roofing (52%).

That may be why 44% of those surveyed invested more money on their home within the first year of owning it than they expected. On top of that, respondents spent two and a half years on average upgrading their home before they were pleased with it.

While time and money were invested in the property, 71% of homeowners now feel like they’ve found their forever home, with the average duration of homeownership at nine years.

Almost half (45%) of respondents said they were encouraged to purchase their home based on its accessible location, while other driving factors included yard size (44%), cost (42%) and curb appeal (39%).

Gen Z (47%) and millennials (46%) were more likely to cite curb appeal – like the color of the home, decks and balconies – as a reason for homebuying than Gen X (35%) and boomers (30%).

Curb Appeal

Younger generations were also more likely to purchase their home based on its architecture and style, with 46% of Gen Zers and 43% of millennials doing so, compared to 30% of Gen Xers and 23% of boomers.

In fact, impressions were found to matter more to millennials than Gen Xers (67% vs. 56%), and aesthetics were valued more by millennials (70%) than Gen Zers (60%).

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