Home Operating Costs and Other Costs

The following is an estimate of the Home Operating Costs and other costs involved in the normal operation of a home in the Toronto area.

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  • Real Taxes

    Property owners have the option of paying their property taxes in eight installments over the course of the calendar year. Mortgage companies may insist that they pay the property tax and collect it with your monthly mortgage payment. Realty taxes range from $1,000 to $5,000 a year depending on the size and location of the property. Taxes are reassessed on an ongoing basis.

  • Heating

    Home heating will usually be provided by natural gas, oil or electricity. Costs vary depending on the type of fuel, size of home, amount of insulation, exposure and usage.

  • Electricity

    Costs vary greatly depending on usage, e.g. how many people you have in the home, the size of your home, how many energy efficient cost measures you have undertaken such as Energy Saver appliances. Usually billing is every second month or you can go on equal billing and pay monthly.

  • Insurance

    Insurance is essential for all homeowners and is required by your mortgage company before it will release the funds to close the deal. Premiums are based on the replacement cost of the building and start at around $350 to $700 per year.

  • Water & Solid Waste Management

    Most properties in Toronto are now on water meters and are billed according to usage. As of November 1st 2008, your water bill will also include a fee for Solid Waste Management. Your Solid Waste Management fee will pay for garbage, recycling, green bin, litter prevention, landfill management and other diversion programs. These utility bills will be sent about three times a year.

  • Home Inspection

    A home inspection is strongly recommended for most residential properties and will usually be a condition of the offer. Your Sales Representative can assist you in choosing your home inspector. This ranges from $350 – $500 depending on the size and value of the property.

  • Appraisal Fees

    When you apply for a mortgage, the lender will want to see an appraisal on the property to ensure that the price you are paying falls within the accepted range of value for that type of property and that area of the city. The fee for this is usually between $250 – $350.

  • Land Survey

    When you make an offer on a freehold property you will usually ask the Seller to provide a copy of the survey for the property. The purpose of this survey is to show the boundaries as well as the footprint of the building on the site. If there is no survey available, you may wish to hire a surveyor to prepare one at a cost of approximately $1,000 to $2,000.

  • Termite Inspection

    You may wish to hire a termite inspector as well as a home inspector if you are buying in an area of the city where termites are known to be a problem. This could add $200 – $300 to the cost of your inspection.

  • Title Insurance

    Title insurance provides insurance against the future costs of remedying most problems with the title on your property. Ask your Sales Representative to explain the benefits and cost of this service.

Sarah Spegel is an experienced real estate agent with the RE/MAX Hallmark Realty. She specializes in dealing with residential real estate properties like detached and semi-detached homes across the city of Toronto and Downtown Toronto.