We just received our 2014 house tax bill for the year. Many include their house taxes in the mortgages. We never did that, even when we had a mortgage, always choosing to save for our house tax and pay in full each June. Our home here in the Comox Valley is a little different as utilities for water, sewer and garbage collection are included for the year where on our home in Alberta we were billed monthly for those items.
What we pay:
2013 = $2900
2014 = $3000 (of which $837 is for water, sewer and garbage)
Our house value is essentially the same as when we bought the home in 2012, $384000 for a 1700 sq foot bungalow on a crawlspace single lot. If this home was not our primary residence the bill would have been $3770. If one of the two of us was 65 or older we would only have to pay $2725.
It went up by $100 which is not terrible and I believe we get what we pay for. We get nailed every year in June and July with large bills as the house tax, car insurance and homeowners insurance are all due around the same time. We save for this by putting $600 per month into a special savings account for "Big Bills". We paid $700 two months ago for updating our wills and personal directives. That money was taken out of the big bill fund.
I hate when bills come out of left field so we try and plan for the year with a little bit of wiggle room for unexpected expenses. Some have an emergency fund but we choose not to as always have access to lines of credit, credit cards and assets that could be sold if a true emergency. In the mean time we sock away money every month.
Even if you don't own your own home, everyone has re-occurring large expenses. How do you pay your "Big Bills?"