Both new construction and existing homes have their advantages and disadvantages. In the current market, buyers have a select inventory to choose from these days. If you are in the market for a new home, here are some things to consider when choosing either an existing home or new construction.
There are many benefits to a new construction home. A new construction home will allow for modern and customizable floor plans. Builders stay in tune with what current homebuyers want, so a new construction home more than likely will follow this trend. In today’s market, new construction homes tend to have an open floor plan with larger bedrooms and bathrooms that allow in tons of natural light. If a home is still under construction, or if a builder is selling it, then you will be able to personalize some of the finishes. There will be a cost involved when you are upgrading from builder grade but adding your own touches might be worth it to you. Another benefit is living in a new home community where most new construction homes are located. Master-planned communities offer tons of amenities such as pools, community spaces and parks.
A new home will also be energy-efficient. Many builders are building smart homes as well as adding more insulation and energy-efficient windows. Smart technology options allow you to control home systems even when you are away from home. New homes are now being painted with low and zero-VOC paints and building materials which is better for a homeowner’s health. Builder warranties are also offered which protect components of a new home for a certain number of years. New homes also require less maintenance since everything will be brand new.
There are some negative aspects of purchasing a new construction home. A new construction home is usually more expensive than a resale. The median sales price of an existing home in April 2022 was $391,200 but the median price of a new construction home was $450,600. Land needs to be available in order for a builder to build new construction. This means that you will more than likely have a longer commute because it will be located farther away from urban areas.
A new community means new landscaping which will take time to grow and mature. A home that has been constructed on a cleared lot, can feel exposed and look stark. If you found your dream home and it is under construction, this will bring a risk of waiting and of delays. It could take several months or longer for a home to be completed in order for you to move in.
This brings us to a move-in ready home. Most resales are move-in ready unless you are renovating. An existing home is also in an established neighborhood that has mature trees and landscaping. As mentioned earlier, a resale is less expensive than a new construction. The material and labor shortages and inflation have caused new construction homes to skyrocket in price.
There will be fewer decisions to make and more location choices when it comes to purchasing an existing home. If you want to live closer to the action, then you will more than likely have to purchase a resale. Most new construction homes are built outside urban areas. When you move into a move-in ready resale, you do not have to make a bunch of decisions such as choosing building materials and exterior and interior finishes. A resale especially if it is an older home will have history and tons of architectural detail. Many of the architectural details found in older homes would be extremely expensive to replace today.
The downside to purchasing an existing home is that it will probably have an outdated floor plan. You might also have to add the expense of updated outdated finishes and if you want a smart home, you might have to rewire the house. Older homes are usually not very insulated and have older HVAC systems which are not energy efficient. There will also be more maintenance on an existing home as well as unexpected repairs.
If you are in the market for a new home, contact a real estate agent who can help you decide which is best for you. A local agent can help you from start to finish with the home buying process.