Whether you live in a home that you rent or own, you will be responsible for paying some bills such as trash, water, gas, and electric. While you may want to minimize utility costs, this is not something that you will have a lot of control of until you live in your own home. If you want to buy a turn-key home, you want to avoid feeling inclined to make changes after moving in.
This means you will want to focus on certain real estate qualities when looking around at properties.
Get New Heating and Cooling
An excellent priority when you begin the house hunting process is getting a new heating and cooling system. Replacing an old and worn system can cost several thousand dollars, which you may not include in your short-term upkeep plans. But, you can feel confident about saving upwards of 20% on maintaining a comfortable home with a new system compared to an old one.
The new system will give you an example of how the home can feel during a tour. To prevent this new system from losing efficiency due to poor insulation, you should also inspect the rest of the home. You want to check the doors and windows to make sure outside air is not getting inside.
Look for Modern Plumbing
Another quality that you should not pass up is modern plumbing. Working toilets and sinks are helpful, but you will not be saving money with a toilet that has an old flushing system. You can optimize utility expenses by buying a home with dual-flush toilets installed in each bathroom.
You can take it a step further by finding a home with low-flow faucets. These two features will often be found in homes where the owners invested in other energy-efficient improvements.
Avoid Vacant Space
Although you may like the idea of growing into a large home, this may not happen. You should consider buying a home with only enough space for what you need. You can get extra creative with furniture selection and placement and have your children share a bedroom. Another option is making a home office by partitioning enough space in the master bedroom or living room.
Avoiding basements, second living rooms, and extra bedrooms are worth considering. You may like the idea of these features being in your home, but they will add to utility costs.
Buying a home with these priorities in mind will have you enjoying minimal utility bills.