Houses for Sale

New Vs. Used: Which Is Right for You?

When it comes to home buying, it is easy to become overwhelmed by the options available to you. There are plenty of positives to either home type, for instance, new homes are not likely to need any major repairs upon move-in. On the negative side, however, they oftentimes are not very unique. Here are some things you need to consider when deciding which option is right for you.

The Positives of Purchasing a New Construction

There are a variety of benefits to buying a new home, a key one being the fact that they are more modern than older builds. Modern homes have so much to offer in the form of convenience, including upscale appliances such as a built-in dishwasher, for instance. It is also important to note that new appliances use significantly less energy, which will save you money. These modern options are very attractive to home buyers and often preferred over the alternative. New homes also will not need maintenance for quite some time after purchasing. In fact, unless the property faces a natural disaster or other issues, you should not need to pay for any updates for around 10-20 years after purchasing your new home.

Another thing to keep in mind is that a new construction provides the advantage of a warranty. A “builder’s warranty” is an assurance for you as a buyer that any issues that may arise with your home will be taken care of at no cost to you. Builders can be held liable for their work for anywhere from 12 months to 24 months depending on your state. However, if you purchase a property in California, the builder’s warranty is 10 years. All new homes are built with the current code regulations in mind (these change often), which means that all current safety guidelines are adhered to and you don’t need to worry about the safety of you and your family.

New homes are not only larger, but they are also oftentimes much less money per square foot than older ones, granted that you haven’t requested any costly add-ons. The lower price of new construction is partly due to the fact that older homes are often much closer to fun attractions and places to eat or hang out, which increases their value.

The Negatives of Purchasing a New Construction

Despite the positives, there are some downsides to buying new as well, such as the fact that the property has not had any time to adjust and settle in. This can cause cracks to appear in the walls and or foundation of the home as well as in other areas. New homes are also very uniform, and new neighborhoods often have homes that are not much different from each other. If you are someone who wishes to have a home that stands out from the rest, you may not get that with the typical new construction. Not to mention, you will likely be a good distance away from commonly frequented locations such as shopping centers, movie theaters, restaurants, etc. New properties also do not have much to offer in the way of landscaping since there is only dirt until the new owner hires someone to lay down the turf.

The Positives of Purchasing an Older Property

Older homes come with a lot of great things as well, such as their unique details and great character. Older properties also typically have more lawn space than newer ones because the land used to be much less expensive, therefore homes were constructed on bigger plots. This older land will also already have the proper landscaping done and will only require general upkeep as opposed to the thousands of dollars it would cost to lay down fresh turf. Older properties are also much more likely to remain as they are and not undergo any zoning changes.

The Negatives of Purchasing an Older Property

Since it has likely been a while since most older homes have had any major repairs, purchasing one means that you may have to cover some additional expenses upfront. Perhaps the roof needs to be replaced, or the foundation needs refreshing. Many older homes also have faulty wiring or plumbing issues. Rewiring the electrical system in a home or updating sewer pipes is quite pricey. Older properties also often require the new owner to replace the HVAC system due to faulty heating or A/C. These homes are also more expensive and typically have less square footage.

So, should you purchase a used home over a new construction; or vice versa? The answer largely depends on your lifestyle and the size of your budget.