Tips for Buying a Home That Won’t Bust Your Budget

capfed_blog11809Once you’ve decided the time is right for purchasing a new home, the first thing you’ll probably do is set a budget for how much you can afford. While the purchase price of a home certainly is important, you shouldn’t rely on that number alone.

Many homeowners know to add expenses such as closing costs into their budget. However, there are many other costs that can come with a new home that people often overlook. When planning a budget for your new home, make sure you remember to factor in the following:

Higher utility bills
If you’re looking for a home with more space, keep in mind those extra rooms will add to your heating and cooling bills. Additional rooms also mean more lights and other items using electricity. Even if you’re not moving into a larger home, it’s still important to think about how utility bills may change. Something as simple as switching from gas to electric or vice versa can mean an unexpected surprise when the first bill comes.

Lawn maintenance costs
If you’re planning on buying your first home, that probably means you’ll need to buy your first lawnmower, weed trimmer, sprinkler and so on. Keeping the lawn green may affect your monthly water bills; so don’t forget to budget accordingly. If your new home will have a larger lawn, you may also want to consider what a lawn service would cost, in case you decide caring for all that extra turf is too hard to handle on your own.

New appliances and repairs
If your new home will come with appliances, that certainly can be a bonus. Over time, those appliances may need repairs, especially if they are not brand new. Or, you may decide the refrigerator or dishwasher in your new home needs an upgrade.

Pest control
No one wants to move into a new home and discover an uninvited colony of ants in the kitchen. While home inspections can help catch pest problems, they’re not 100 percent foolproof, especially since some critters prefer to come out at night. Make sure you have wiggle room in your budget to pay for the removal of any such unwelcome guests you might discover after moving in.

Home repairs
Just because a home is move-in ready when you purchase it, doesn’t mean it will stay in perfect condition forever. Every homeowner should plan for unexpected repairs on an annual basis. A good rule of thumb is to budget one to two percent of your mortgage per year for repairs.

Additional insurance
Of course, a new house means a new home insurance rate. However, it’s important to think about how a new home will affect other insurance policies as well. If it’s important to you to have a life insurance plan that can cover the remainder of an existing mortgage, a new home may mean you’ll need to increase your existing coverage. If you need help making insurance decisions, our Capitol Agency Insurance representatives will gladly help design a coverage plan that’s right for you.

Moving costs
Many people overlook how quickly extra costs can add up before you’ve even moved into a new home. If you’re planning on using a moving company, research what the costs will be for labor, trucks and mileage so you’re not surprised when the bill arrives. If you’re skipping the professional movers and relying on the help of friends, don’t forget you’ll need to entice them with drinks and snacks.

Decorating expenses
Once you’re moved in, you’ll want to make the new house a home. This may mean new curtains, additional furniture, pictures to cover the walls and more. When looking at potential homes, factor in how much more stuff you’ll need to buy to make it a comfortable space for your family.

Can you think of other unexpected home ownership expenses? Share them here!

9 Free Fun Activities Around Lawrence

15Lawrence-FreeSummerIf you’re on a tight budget this summer, it doesn’t mean all fun has to stop. Lawrence is a great town for finding free ways to have fun. We’ve put together a few ideas to help you make the most of this summer!

Lawrence Public Library’s Summer in the City. The library has a whole host of events planned to keep all ages entertained this summer, from reading clubs to free movies. The highlighted link will take you off the Capitol Federal Savings Bank website. Capitol Federal Savings Bank is not responsible for the contents of the site or any further links from such site. Capitol Federal Savings Bank is providing these links to you only as a convenience, and the inclusion of any link does not imply endorsement of the linked site by Capitol Federal Savings Bank.

KU Natural History Museum. Admission to the museum is free, however, it does welcome contributions from visitors. Watch a colony of bees hard at work or view one of the world’s first panorama exhibits depicting mammals in their natural surroundings. The highlighted link will take you off the Capitol Federal Savings Bank website. Capitol Federal Savings Bank is not responsible for the contents of the site or any further links from such site. Capitol Federal Savings Bank is providing these links to you only as a convenience, and the inclusion of any link does not imply endorsement of the linked site by Capitol Federal Savings Bank.

Picnic in Clinton State Park. Spread out a blanket or grab a picnic table and relax while enjoying the beautiful scenery. The highlighted link will take you off the Capitol Federal Savings Bank website. Capitol Federal Savings Bank is not responsible for the contents of the site or any further links from such site. Capitol Federal Savings Bank is providing these links to you only as a convenience, and the inclusion of any link does not imply endorsement of the linked site by Capitol Federal Savings Bank.

Take a nature walk. Clinton State Park offers two scenic walking trails which are open in all seasons. The highlighted link will take you off the Capitol Federal Savings Bank website. Capitol Federal Savings Bank is not responsible for the contents of the site or any further links from such site. Capitol Federal Savings Bank is providing these links to you only as a convenience, and the inclusion of any link does not imply endorsement of the linked site by Capitol Federal Savings Bank.

Enjoy Final Fridays in Downtown Lawrence. On the last Friday of each month, you can find great local art on display throughout Lawrence’s downtown businesses. The highlighted link will take you off the Capitol Federal Savings Bank website. Capitol Federal Savings Bank is not responsible for the contents of the site or any further links from such site. Capitol Federal Savings Bank is providing these links to you only as a convenience, and the inclusion of any link does not imply endorsement of the linked site by Capitol Federal Savings Bank.

Visit Civil War sites. Lawrence is a town rich in history from the Civil War era. Stop by the Lawrence Visitor Center to pick up information on local Civil War sites for a self-guided tour. The highlighted link will take you off the Capitol Federal Savings Bank website. Capitol Federal Savings Bank is not responsible for the contents of the site or any further links from such site. Capitol Federal Savings Bank is providing these links to you only as a convenience, and the inclusion of any link does not imply endorsement of the linked site by Capitol Federal Savings Bank.

Wade or swim in the Chi Omega Fountain. Located at the west end of Jayhawk Boulevard, this fountain, which allows swimming and wading, is a fun spot for cooling off on a hot day. The highlighted link will take you off the Capitol Federal Savings Bank website. Capitol Federal Savings Bank is not responsible for the contents of the site or any further links from such site. Capitol Federal Savings Bank is providing these links to you only as a convenience, and the inclusion of any link does not imply endorsement of the linked site by Capitol Federal Savings Bank.

Spend a day at Centennial Park. This 35-acre park offers picnic sites, a large skate park with ramps and stairs to skate on and an 18-hole disc golf course. The highlighted link will take you off the Capitol Federal Savings Bank website. Capitol Federal Savings Bank is not responsible for the contents of the site or any further links from such site. Capitol Federal Savings Bank is providing these links to you only as a convenience, and the inclusion of any link does not imply endorsement of the linked site by Capitol Federal Savings Bank.

Treat the family to Dinner and a Movie. Bring lawn chairs or blankets and enjoy a free movie on the Lawrence Public Library lawn. Live entertainment will be provided before the movie and local food vendors will be on hand selling refreshments. The highlighted link will take you off the Capitol Federal Savings Bank website. Capitol Federal Savings Bank is not responsible for the contents of the site or any further links from such site. Capitol Federal Savings Bank is providing these links to you only as a convenience, and the inclusion of any link does not imply endorsement of the linked site by Capitol Federal Savings Bank.

What’s your favorite free activity around Lawrence? Share it here!

 

Free Summer Fun in Kansas City

15KC-FreeSummerAnyone who has lived in Kansas City will tell you there’s no shortage of fun things to do in summer. The best part is many of these fun activities won’t cost you a dime.

WeekEnders at Crown Center
Enjoy food trucks and local artisans followed by a family favorite movie. The highlighted link will take you off the Capitol Federal Savings Bank website. Capitol Federal Savings Bank is not responsible for the contents of the site or any further links from such site. Capitol Federal Savings Bank is providing these links to you only as a convenience, and the inclusion of any link does not imply endorsement of the linked site by Capitol Federal Savings Bank.

Deanna Rose Children’s Farmstead
This family attraction designed to resemble a Kansas family farm is free Monday through Thursday. The highlighted link will take you off the Capitol Federal Savings Bank website. Capitol Federal Savings Bank is not responsible for the contents of the site or any further links from such site. Capitol Federal Savings Bank is providing these links to you only as a convenience, and the inclusion of any link does not imply endorsement of the linked site by Capitol Federal Savings Bank.

Federal Reserve Kansas City Money Museum
This free museum has something for all ages, including art projects, the region’s largest cash vault and interactive exhibits about the economy. The highlighted link will take you off the Capitol Federal Savings Bank website. Capitol Federal Savings Bank is not responsible for the contents of the site or any further links from such site. Capitol Federal Savings Bank is providing these links to you only as a convenience, and the inclusion of any link does not imply endorsement of the linked site by Capitol Federal Savings Bank.

Tour the Harley-Davidson Vehicle and Powertrain Operations
This tour is a must for any motorcycle enthusiast. You’ll visit the factory floor to view various manufacturing and assembly processes, and you can also have the chance to sit on current production motorcycles. The highlighted link will take you off the Capitol Federal Savings Bank website. Capitol Federal Savings Bank is not responsible for the contents of the site or any further links from such site. Capitol Federal Savings Bank is providing these links to you only as a convenience, and the inclusion of any link does not imply endorsement of the linked site by Capitol Federal Savings Bank.

Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art
More than 34,500 pieces of art are on display in this free museum. When the weather is nice, bring a blanket and take in the city’s scenery from the museum lawn. The highlighted link will take you off the Capitol Federal Savings Bank website. Capitol Federal Savings Bank is not responsible for the contents of the site or any further links from such site. Capitol Federal Savings Bank is providing these links to you only as a convenience, and the inclusion of any link does not imply endorsement of the linked site by Capitol Federal Savings Bank.

Check out Scenic Trails and Bikeways
Whether you walk, jog or ride, Kansas City is filled with scenic trails. The highlighted link will take you off the Capitol Federal Savings Bank website. Capitol Federal Savings Bank is not responsible for the contents of the site or any further links from such site. Capitol Federal Savings Bank is providing these links to you only as a convenience, and the inclusion of any link does not imply endorsement of the linked site by Capitol Federal Savings Bank.

For even more ideas for free fun in Kansas City, check out these lists:

33 Free Things to Do in Kansas City
10 Free Things to Do with Kids The highlighted link will take you off the Capitol Federal Savings Bank website. Capitol Federal Savings Bank is not responsible for the contents of the site or any further links from such site. Capitol Federal Savings Bank is providing these links to you only as a convenience, and the inclusion of any link does not imply endorsement of the linked site by Capitol Federal Savings Bank.

What’s your favorite free summer activity in Kansas City? Share it here!