Steve Antonucci's Blog
American workers commute about 50 minutes a day to and from work. Millions of Americans are on the road more than an hour a day just to travel from home to work. That’s two hours round trip each workday. This amount of time spent on the road makes it easy to understand why anyone would focus their home buying choice on how close a new house is to their job.
Short commutes may not get you all the savings you want
But, making the distance between your home and job the primary factor that will determine where you live may end up costing you more than you think. Buy a house in a major city like Philadelphia, New York or Chicago and you’re going to pay city income tax. Property taxes in these areas may also be higher than what you’d pay if you move further away from the heart of the city. Other costs that you might face include:
Move to a major metropolis and you’ll see lots of power lines. The good thing is that you’ll have lots of juice. The downside is that power could go out frequently because those power lines are feeding energy into lots of houses. If this happens, power outages could force you to buy a backup generator.
Construction could become an issue if you buy a house that’s in a developing area. The fact that a lot of large companies are located near busy hubs could increase your chances of having to deal with construction. Although construction may not lengthen your commute distance, it will likely extend your commute time.
Other costs that you may incur
You’re not the only one who would love to live and spend time close to major business hubs. People who choose to steal also frequent these areas. This single factor alone could cause you to need a home security system, and not just any home security system. You may have to pay for a security system that lets you view your house while you’re away. The type of home security system that’s sold at housewares stores may not deliver all the security services that you need.
Home owner’s insurance fees might be higher, again depending on where your new house is located. Shop around and compare homeowner’s insurance prices before you buy a new house.
Houses in new developments may come with homeowner’s association fees. These fees range from $100 to several hundred dollars a month. Although you’ll have some services like landscaping and community recreation included in your homeowner’s association fees, you’ll be responsible for repairs that are made to your actual house.
Concerning,repairs, if your new house that’s closer to your job site is on a busy street,you could pay for sidewalk, driveway and mailbox repairs. The mailbox repairs could come if drivers bang into your mailbox while they speed down the street.People also might back in and out of your driveway if they take a wrong turn or get lost.
A house that’s 10 or fewer miles from your job saves you gas money. That’s for sure.But, depending on the residential areas that surround your workplace, buying a house close to your job could end up devouring those fuel savings. If the residential area is declining, you could end up owning a house that cost more than it’s worth. You could also be forced to take on other costs that you hadn’t previously thought about or budgeted for.