Image courtesy of Neil Cummings

There are many costs associated with your home. These include your rent or mortgage, council tax, buildings and contents insurance, upkeep and decorating, burglar alarms, home improvements and buying home wear. You may not realise how many costs there are until your first start renting or buy a home. There are ways that you can reduce some of these costs though.

If you rent your home, then you will not be able to change this amount, or that of the council tax that you pay. However, if you choose a smaller home, then these will be lower and the rent may also be lower if you share a home or if you choose a cheaper location. With a mortgage, it will be similar, with location and size usually being the main factors determining the cost of the home. However, if you are borrowing money, then the cost of the mortgage will also be relevant and you will need to look for a lender that is cheap. You can switch mortgages, although there may be a fee for this and it is worth thinking about whether this is something that would be good for you to try in order to save money.

Insurance can be expensive. It is worth comparing prices though to see whether you can save money. If you have a mortgage you will have life insurance as well and buildings and contents to pay and so it could really add up. If you are renting, you will just have contents insurance to consider. There are many comparison websites out there so it is worth looking to see whether you can save a significant amount of money by change your insurer.

Home improvements, upkeep of the home and decorating are more applicable to home owners, although those renting may wish to paint as well. These jobs can be much cheaper if you do them yourselves rather than paying someone. If you do hire someone to do them for you, then make sure that you get several quotes so that you can choose the one that you feel will offer you the best value for money.

A burglar alarm may be something that your insurance company insists on. If they do not though, it may be worth considering whether it is really necessary. You will need to get it serviced annually and that will cost money and your insurance may even go up because the insurance may assume that the fact you have an alarm means that the area is not safe.

Buying things for the home such as furniture, accessories etc can be expensive. It is worth budgeting for these and making sure that you do not buy more than necessary. Compare prices as well so that you do not pay more than necessary.

When you first move house you will probably be at the time when money is the tightest. At that time, try to be really careful with your spending and budgeting and if you need furniture or other homewares, ask friends and family to help out. You may be able to borrow things form them to keep you going until you can afford to buy them for yourselves.