(A new construction in Newton, MA. Click photo for more.)
Buying a home takes time, especially when you can't decide whether to buy an existing home or wait and move into new construction. They have their pros and cons, and this post will help you decide which is best for you.
If you are a person who tends to move a lot, consider that existing homes are pretty much everywhere. We live in a time where housing sells fast, and inventory is low, yet you can still manage to find a home that suits most of your needs. We find that location is the most critical part of real estate, as it's usually the biggest deciding factor in the homebuying purchase. $1M will get you something decent in Boston, but it'll get you something exceptional in middle-of-nowhere Nevada.
New homes and existing homes are offered in a wide range of prices, depending on location, size, amenities, etc. The difference in sale price comes from the number of updates a home might need, so if you are considering an existing home because it is cheaper, think again. You must add to the total cost, all renewals, and upgrades. New homes tend to be a bit more expensive, however, you can design them however you like and once it's ready you just have to move in.
If you are in love with a neighborhood then is possibly easier to buy new construction. Perhaps you can find an existing home that you like, but it can take a while. Many people are not only looking for the home of their dreams, but a neighborhood that has it all. Keep in mind that not all neighborhoods allow new construction, so we recommend you start by checking the zoning laws. Yes, you can get those laws changed if you have finesse. If you do, you'll figure it out. If you don't, contact Castles Unlimited and we'll handle it for you. If there's a lovely street that interests you, ask your agent for help finding an existing home that fits your needs.
Many people choose an existing home due to the time it takes to build a new home. There are several elements involved in this kind of projects, starting from the plans, the city approvals to the actual construction. If you are in a rush to move into a new home, you'll want to look at ones that are already built. Alternatively, rent while they finish your new construction. Balls in your court.
Having an established landscape comes with the existing home's selling price. Some people also want mature trees and yards for their family to enjoy, even though it comes with a lot of work. If you don't want the work, take into account that changing a landscape gets costly. On the other hand, customizing a landscape in new construction is easier since the whole plot was just torn up.
Besides all the above, consider the life expectancy of appliances in existing homes. House appliances usually have a life expectancy of 10-20 years, depending on their use, and also quality. This applies to kitchen appliances, the furnace, garage doors, fire alarms, etc.
Think about the structure, plumbing, and electrical elements that also need maintenance and repairs. This is nothing to worry about, however, these costs have to be integrated into the overall cost of an existing home, while new construction will also need repairs, but not in the near future.