Budgeting Tips for Hidden Costs of Buying a Home

Purchasing a home is a huge decision, particularly in an active and dynamic city like Toronto. If you’re a first-time home buyer, you need a thorough understanding of the hidden costs associated with home buying. You have to incur numerous hidden costs that can hinder your budget. It is extremely important to set a good plan when it comes to these expenses in order not to burst the pocket. Here are a few tips about the hidden costs for first-time home buyers in Toronto:

1. Home Inspection

A home inspection service is a crucial factor every time a person considers purchasing a home. It also aids in determining common problems such as structural and mechanical problems with the building that may not be conspicuous to any ordinary person taking a casual glance at the property. In the case of average inspections, this could cost between $300 and $500 for a home inspection in Toronto.

Budget Tip: A thorough inspection of a home can cost a considerable amount of money and it underlines that inspection costs should be included in the initial cost estimates of a home-buying. They have cut a grand on their costs incurred from unexpected damages through an upfront investment.

2. Land Transfer Tax

Toronto has a unique feature to discourage the purchase of real estate – a land transfer tax is paid by the buyers. Often it depends on the price of the property which is multiplied by a certain factor depending on the purchased property price. Many people have voiced their concerns about the Toronto property tax because there is not only a provincial land transfer tax but also a municipally implemented one.

Budget Tip: Consult the expert to estimate land transfer tax to determine those for the targeted house prices. Include this in your other costs so that you are not shocked when completing the papers to close the deal.

3. Legal Fees

Real estate law can be extremely complicated, which is why retaining the legal services of a lawyer is recommended when purchasing a property. They prepare the documents, confirm the title, and transfer money according to the agreement. In Toronto, costs of lawyers’ services depend on many factors, but usually start from $1,000 to $2,000.

Budget Tip: Invest time and resources seeking legal advice from different lawyers before compiling a list of prospective homes to estimate the cost and fit it into your budget.

4. Title Insurance

Title insurance is an insurance policy that serves to guard you from insolence disputes regarding ownership of the property that you acquire which may include undisclosed encumbrances or mistakes in public records. Also, the average one-time fee ranges from as low as $200 to as high as $500.

Budget Tip: Although title insurance is indeed not mandatory, it’s very much advisable. This is an expense you need to budget for so that to ensure your investment is protected at all times.

5. Mortgage Insurance

If the amount that you are putting down as a deposit is less than 20% of the value of the home you wish to buy, you will have to make additional payments to the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) in the form of mortgage insurance. This insurance helps safeguard the lender if you fail to complete payment for the loan.

Budget Tip: Mortgage insurance is an element of any mortgage that is usually added to your monthly payments, essentially you can pay for it in the long term but it is beneficial to know the costs in advance.

6. Property Appraisal

The common practice among lending companies is to ask for a property appraisal if they are to grant you the mortgage so that they can estimate the value of the home. This saves the image of the Mortgage Company as well as ensures that it is worth the loan amount one wants to have on the property. It is found that appraisals range from $300 to $500 for each appraisal that is being conducted.

Budget Tip: Determine whether the amount of the appraisal fee has been broken down in your mortgage plan. If not, provide for this essential cost to ensure proper operations of the business and its various units.

7. Moving Costs

Transportation expenses are usually more expensive and depend on the distance that you are likely covering, the amount of property that you are dealing with, or whether you employ a moving company to assist you. The cost of hiring a moving company in Toronto now stands between a couple of hundred and several thousand dollars.

Budget Tip: Seek recommendations from at least three moving companies, and price your moving expenses based on the highest estimate obtained. Other possible costs that must not be overlooked include moving boxes and other packing materials, as well as extra expenses for moving your items into storage.


Understanding and budgeting for the hidden costs of buying a home in Toronto is crucial for a smooth and stress-free purchasing process. By planning for expenses such as home inspections, land transfer taxes, legal fees, and more, you can avoid unexpected financial strain and enjoy your new home with peace of mind.

At Keypr, we understand the importance of financial preparedness when making significant investments. We will provide you with a list of affordable homes Toronto tailored to your needs. Whether you’re a first-time home buyer or looking to upgrade, we’re committed to helping you navigate the complexities of the home-buying process. Happy house hunting!