Cost of Owning, Maintaining a Home Up 26% Since 2020, Bankrate Finds

(Illustration courtesy of Bankrate)

The average annual cost of owning and maintaining a single-family home in the U.S. is 26% higher now than four years ago, according to Bankrate, New York.

Bankrate calculated the average costs of property taxes, homeowners insurance, home maintenance costs and electricity, internet and cable bills and found that they add up to $18,118 a year for a typical single-family home (valued at $436,291 per Redfin) for its Hidden Costs of Homeownership Study.

Nationally, that works out to an additional $1,510 per month on top of a mortgage payment. In 2020, those same expenses totaled $14,428 annually for a typical single-family home, equivalent to $1,202 per month.  

“Homeownership is an important wealth-builder for many Americans, but it ain’t cheap,” Bankrate Analyst Jeff Ostrowski said. “These numbers show that the costs of owning a home are at the same level as buying a used car every year.”

While average hidden costs of homeownership are up 26% nationally, the states with the biggest percentage increases 2020 to 2024 include Utah (44%), Idaho (39%) and Hawaii (38%). Conversely, Alaska, Texas and Louisiana had the smallest percentage increases in hidden homeownership costs from 2020 to 2024, with Alaska and Texas both experiencing a 14% increase and Louisiana having 15%.

The states with the highest average hidden costs of homeownership tend to be in the western or northeastern U.S., while the states with the lowest hidden costs are all in southeastern or midwestern states.

Assuming single-family homeowners spend 2% of their home’s value on maintenance every year, Hawaii and California have the highest cost of home maintenance in the country, at $19,860 and $16,966, respectively, the report said. Iowa and Oklahoma have the lowest typical home maintenance costs at $4,596 and $4,844, respectively, Bankrate found.

“No matter where you live, make sure you include some cushion in your monthly budget to absorb the shock of unplanned expenses,” Ostrowski added. “After you achieve homeownership, you need to fatten up your emergency savings account for all those surprise repairs.”