When looking for a home, most people have the choice between an existing, already-built home and new construction. There are a lot of reasons to buy a new home, but there also are some things you need to consider.
If you are building your home from scratch rather than buying a "spec" or model home, you will have the ability to customize the home to your liking. If you want to be able to design everything in the home, you will need to work with a custom builder. Some of the things you will need to decide are: how big the home will be; how many bedrooms and baths it will have; and where rooms will go. Keep in mind that going the custom route will increase the cost.
Building a new home can allow you to be a little bit pickier about where you live. Wherever you can find a buildable lot for sale, you can build your home. With whatever area you choose - whether it’s a new subdivision or an infill lot inside the city - you want to make sure you do your research about schools and other vital information. And you want to make sure you understand all local codes and zoning restrictions to be sure you can build the size and type of home you want.
When building a new home, you have to time your move properly. Remember that whatever building time frame you are given is an estimate and can be affected by weather, the ability of subcontractors and a variety of other factors, so you need to have some flexibility built into your moving plans. If you own another home, you will have to decide whether you want to sell it and live somewhere temporarily while your home is being finished or wait to sell it until after your home is complete.
Though building a new home should cut down on your initial maintenance costs - because everything is new and unlikely to break down or fail - there still are ongoing costs of owning a home that apply whether it's new or not. These include things like lawn and landscape care and HVAC maintenance. The good news with a new home is that it should be many years before you have to worry about things such as replacing appliances or fixing your roof.
There are many things to consider when deciding on whether to buy a new home or an existing one. However, the advantages of a new home usually outweigh any drawbacks for most buyers.
Neal Johnson is a CMCA, CRB, CNE and GRI-certified, licensed real estate broker at Network Real Estate, which has exclusively served a high volume of property sales and purchases in the greater Wilmington area for more than 30 years. With three offices at College Road, historic downtown Wilmington and Pleasure Island, Network’s brokers are widespread and well-versed in this marketplace, making Network a preferred real estate company for first-time homebuyers and beyond.