House Closing, Operating and Maintenance Costs in Canada

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Updated April 19, 2023

The following is a list of all the expected and unexpected fees we incurred during the home buying process and the exact amounts we paid for each.

While the exact numbers are based on our experience buying in Belleville, ON, you can download and use the spreadsheet template below to keep track of your own estimates, quotes and local fees and the calculations will work no matter where you are in Canada.

Download the editable Google Sheet to calculate your own estimated closing, monthly and maintenance costs:

Closing costs – one-time fees

Purchase price$370,000.00
Downpayment Amount$74,000.00
CMHC Mortgage Loan Insurance0%CMHC Mortgage Loan Insurance Table
Total borrowed, incl CMHC premium$296,000.00CMHC Premium Calculator
Closing costAmountNotes
Downpayment amount$74,000.00Including $1,000 paid as deposit
PST8.00%Only applies to SK, QC, ON, MB
PST on CMHC premium$0.00
Provincial Land Transfer Tax$4,025.00Land Transfer Tax Calculator
Less Provincial Rebate-$4,000.002 purchasers @ $2,000 each
Municipal Land Transfer Tax$0eg. Toronto
Less Municipal Rebate$0eg. Toronto
Home Appraisal$350.00Some lenders may cover this fee
Home Inspection$439.57
Title Insurance$282.00
Register Transfer & Charge$150.54
Closing Holdback$100.00
Legal Fees & Disbursements$875.75
Closing Adjustments$1,110.62Portion owed to previous owner
Utility hook ups$300.00
Lock changes$100.00
Total moving expenses$1,128.44
Total one time costs$79,181.28Money needed to close and move in

While the downpayment was $74,000, we needed a total of almost $80,000 in funds available on or before the closing date. We funded this through a combination of savings kept in a high interest account and money withdrawn from our RRSPs through the Home Buyer’s Plan (HBP).

Total closing costs (payments made in cash when the home closes) were $6,231 (including $1,000 deposit) or 1.68% of the purchase price, which is in keeping with 1.5% to 4% that is recommended to have on hand to cover these fees.

The closing adjustments are the portion of the property taxes, utility bills and other fees that has been prepaid by the previous homeowner for time/usage after ownership will have been transferred and the buyer is living in the home. They are determined by the lawyer and added to the amount paid in trust to the lawyer. In our case the total was $1,110.62.

Property taxes are calculated as a percentage of the municipalities’ assessed value of your home. The property taxes in Belleville are steep – 1.485% municipal and and additional 0.161% education levy. The assessed values are typically years behind the current market value of the home. In our case their stated value was $289,250 while we bought the home for $370,000.

Our lawyer fees and disbursements cost a total of $1,445.57 including HST (includes “Register Transfer & Charge” and “Closing Holdback”). Disbursement fees included search costs ($118), Executions Certificate ($59), photocopies ($5), postage ($5), couriers ($65), faxes ($5), long distance phone ($5), software transaction ($20).

Title insurance was a one time fee for $282.

A home appraisal can cost $250 to $350, but the buyer’s mortgage lender will often cover the fee.

DIY moving expenses were: a cube van from Discount Truck Rental ($482.37 rental, $37.01 gas) for Kitchener to Stouffville and Uhaul ($300.31 rental, $133.76 gas) for Stouffville to Belleville and a hotel when we got there for $175. These can be tax deductible.

Operating costs – repeating monthly fees

Operating costAmount per monthNotes
Mortgage$1,418.68See basic calculator on downloadable worksheet below
Property Taxes$358.00Paid in 2 installments per year – I’ve prorated monthly here
Education Levy$38.81Paid in 2 installments per year – I’ve prorated monthly here
Home Insurance$102.41
Gas (Natural, Propane)$80.00
Water & waste$83.33Paid bi-monthly – I’ve prorated monthly here
HVAC rental (water heater, heat pump, etc.)
Avoid if you can
$25Reliance – paid every 3 months
Internet & TV$62.09Teksavvy
Water filters (fridge, sink, etc.)$30Every 6 months
Furnace filters$15Every 2-3 months
Total monthly operating costs$2,222.16

Maintenance costs and common repairs needed

Maintenance itemAmountNotes
Misc. outdoor$500eg. landscaping, yard issues, cleaning eavestroughs, gardening
Plumber/electrician/appliance repair$350Factor in one service call per year, more for an old house / old appliances
One MAJOR item (see below) per year$5,000Assumes at least one of the major items below needs doing per year
Estimated annual maintenance costs$5,850
Monthly (annual lump sum costs / 12)$488
Potential upkeep expensesAmountNotes
Roof replacement$4,000Every 10-20 years unless you get metal or 50 year shingles
Major appliance replacement$800Washer, dryer, dishwasher, fridge, stove
Furnace replacement$5,000Plan for this if yours is >15 years old
Paint exterior / siding repair$2,000Every 5-10 years, places can quickly look tired with our winters
Paint interior$1,000Can do a lot of this yourself
Flooded basement$4,000If you are planning for this, then buy a different house
Basic renovation$5,000Small, simple renos are not required of course, but you’ll want to slowly improve things, adds to property value and makes for a nicer place to live
New windows / exterior door$7,500Every 20-30 years, depends on how old they are when you buy the place
Recaulking around windows, air vents, sinks, bathtubAs needed
Regrouting tile floorsAs needed
Patio and deck resealingEvery 2 years
Driveway patching and resealingEvery 2 years
Lawn mowingAs needed
Snow removalAs needed
Garage?Grease for the garage door opener chain
Sprinkler system?Maintenance 1-2 times per year
Generator?Oil and air filter change 1-2 times per year
Pool and/or hot tub?Chemicals, cleaning and maintenance

Prioritize maintenance that prevents water from getting where it shouldn’t, pests (rodents, animals and bugs) from making your home their home, helps extend the life of products, and reduces the risk of fire.

Maintenance is almost always cheaper than repair, so fix things at the first sign of trouble.

It can be worth getting a home inspected before buying it and making the purchase conditional on its results. A home inspection may uncover major issues (and therefore costs) you wouldn’t have seen otherwise, allowing you to back out, and any minor issues found can be used to negotiate the purchase price and offset repair costs.

What to read next

Over to you

We want to continue improving the worksheet and keep it up-to-date. The best way to do this is by adding details reported from readers across Canada like you.

If you’ve bought a house recently or paid for some maintenance, let us know in the comments below what you had done, how much it cost and what city/province you’re in and we’ll add it here.

About the author

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Alex Wideman
Alex Wideman is a consumer rights advocate, serial entrepreneur and the editor-in-chief of Cansumer. He has a bachelor's degree in electrical engineering from Queen's University. He is passionate about helping others save time and money and has been creating consumer-focused online resources for over 10 years. More about Cansumer Read more

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1 comment

  1. This post is excellent! I’ve been looking for details on general living and upkeep costs for owning a home for a while now and this is the first place that spells everything out. So nice to have a simple graph instead of complex calculations. I will make sure to post my details once I get my own mortgage!