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The biggest fees you might not expect when buying a home

Posted at 8:19 AM, Apr 26, 2017
and last updated 2017-04-26 11:19:38-04

Right now almost 70 percent of renters in major U.S. cities say coming up with the down payment is holding them back from buying a home. And we found there are other costs of home-buying that are not so obvious.

Breanna Dahlin is tracking every dollar spent to renovate the house she and her boyfriend Juan Ontiveros just bought.

"I wanted to know everything we needed to buy," Dahlin says. "So I got all of the directions for everything we needed to do like our floors. I was able to calculate. We need 16 gallons of our color paint, seven gallons of white paint."

And that paint? They're putting it on the walls themselves. If they seem a little cost conscious it's for good reason. During their home buying process, they had to pay out of pocket for fees they didn't expect.

"I think we were surprised at how big the closing costs were," Dahlin says. "There are a ton of things that go into that like record fees and then our appraisal fee, our inspection was quite a bit."

And experts say those are just a few of the hidden costs of home buying. Other hidden costs include fees for things like setting up the loan and mortgage paperwork, title and homeowners insurance, and paying off old property taxes. Then there are moving expenses, appliances, yard work and renovations.

Patrick Noonan works with Colorado Housing Connects to help homebuyers. He says it's important to start the process early to make sure you're not surprised by expenses you aren't expecting.

"Call around for a couple of different quotes because you might be able to avoid one hidden cost that's going to be more than what you're looking for with one product than another," Noonan says.

It's advice these homeowners hope others take to heart, even if it's too late for them.

"I think you need to be prepared for what you were getting involved in and you are spending a lot of money," Dahlin says. "So I think you really need to know if you can do that or not."