Toronto home buyers spend a lot of time thinking about how much their mortgage payment will be: what price they should offer for the house and the terms of the mortgage. And yes, those are critical decisions – but how much does it really cost to OWN a typical two storey, three bedroom house in Toronto?
- Property taxes – How much you pay in property taxes depends on the city-assessed value of your house (which is usually considerably lower than the market value). For a house assessed at $600,000, the tax bill for 2016 is $4,233 annually. You can access the city of Toronto’s tax calculator here.
- Home insurance – This number will vary greatly, depending on how much “stuff” you have and your insurance claims history. Our clients usually pay around $100-$150 a month for home insurance.
- Water, sewage and garbage/recycling – The city charges for water depending on how much you consume while garbage costs are based on how big your bins are. While the annual amount will vary with usage, expect to pay $600-$750 total per year for all 3 bills combined (billed three times per year or monthly). Click here to find out more about water rates in Toronto.
- Hydro – In our experience, the average hydro bill for a typical three bedroom Toronto home is $125-200 a month. There are tons of ways you can bring your hydro rates down – click here for more information about conserving energy and time-of-use hydro rates.
- Gas – Average monthly gas bills are around $125-150. Click here to read about incentives to reduce your heating and cooling bills in Toronto.
- Repairs and maintenance – This involves everything from having your ducts cleaned to the furnace serviced to cleaning the gutters and downspouts. And let’s not forget that you’ll probably need to replace the roof at some point ($8,000-10,000) along with upgrading your appliances. Experts suggest you budget 1-3% of the value of your home every year to deal with repairs and maintenance. Click here for our handy home maintenance schedule.
- Gardening/snow removal – While the fantasy of owning a home usually involves lovingly tending to your garden, the reality is that many of us outsource it – or at the very least, we have to buy plants, gardening implements and a shovel. Budget for $500+ a year.
If you’re thinking of buying a house in Toronto, make sure to take the time to work out the closing costs AND the monthly costs to maintain it. If you’re looking for someone to help demystify home ownership, we’d be happy to help!