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Building a New Home vs. Buying an Existing One: Which is Better?

15/06/2020
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Owning a home is one of the most important achievements of your life. Imagine being handed the keys from the seller or the contractor. You insert and turn the key and the door opens smoothly. Quickly, your eyes dart across the room. You nod as you appreciate the electrifying sight. Overwhelmed with joy and emotion, you can’t believe that you finally have a place you call home. You are internalizing it slowly, half-believing that this is all yours.

But how do you arrive at owning a home? Should you buy a ready-built home or have one built from scratch? Another option is buying a used house. In this blog post, we weigh the pros and cons of buying vs. building a new home.

Buying an Existing Home

Buying an existing home has two main advantages which are cost and convenience. After you get pre-approved by the lender, you just need to shop around and choose a home that you find most appealing and then table an offer.

Using an expert real estate agent can help smoothen the process. They can help you assist you to find a good property and guide you through negotiations, as well as help with the paperwork. After the seller accepts your offer, you can then close the deal and move into your new home in a month or two.

Although the process of buying a new home involves several processes like financing, viewing homes, tabling offers, inspecting homes, and finally closing, it still gives you the convenience of moving in right away. This is one reason why people go for an existing home instead of building one from scratch.

Building a New Home

When you opt to build a new home, you won’t get the same convenience as buying an already existing home. You not only have to purchase the land, but you also have to take into account the time needed for finding a builder or an architect. You also have to select each element of the newly built home.

The biggest advantage of building your home from scratch is that you will get just what you want. This is an important factor and for many people, it is what makes them prefer a new build. But there are other advantages as well of building over buying. You have a chance to build a more energy-efficient home that can meet heating standards and energy codes, cooling, ventilation, air filtration, and insulation. A new build also gives you better efficiency which is not only environment friendly, but also saves you money on utility bills every month.

Factors to Consider When Choosing Whether to Build or Buy

Maintenance

When buying an existing home: Existing homes have greater wear and tear, meaning certain elements may require more maintenance. You may even need to replace those that are in their twilight years.

The cost of such maintenance can add up quickly, which is why you need to know how old the items are. For instance, a furnace lasts 20 years on average and can cost up to $5,000 replacing. An HVAC system can last 15 years and will need a minimum of $5,000 to replace it.
The roof is another crucial aspect. An average shingled roof will typically last for 25 years. Replacing a roof could cost as much as $5,000. This is not even to mention things like septic and plumbing.

When you buy an existing home, it is advisable to start replacing things irrespective of whether they are still functioning or not.

If you build a new home: One of the main reasons people build new homes is because it has much less maintenance. This is because everything is new and comes with a warranty. The entire home might even be protected for as many as 10 years as some builders will give you construction warranty to cover any problems arising. Your exterior and interior maintenance costs for 10 years are close to nothing. This can help you recoup some of the cost of home construction.

Energy efficiency

If you go for an existing home: Older homes have dated appliances and windows. This means money will fly out of the window in wasted expenditure on energy.

If you build a home from scratch: New construction always beats older ones when it comes to energy efficiency. Homes constructed after 2000 use 21% less energy for heating compared to older homes. This is because of the improved efficiency of building materials and heating equipment. This leads to lower energy expenses every month, even with greater square footage in most of the newer homes.

Appreciation

An existing home: One area that old homes excel at is that there is context to your purchase. It is possible to research the previous sales prices of homes and prices of comparable properties. This will enable you to figure out whether or not prices are going up or down in your area. In case prices have been rising steadily, this is an indication that they will continue rising, something that’s welcome news if you are planning to sell on later.

For new home: New home constructions are a bit of a gamble especially in neighbourhoods that are just coming up. As there are no track records of comparable properties, you don’t have enough data to know how things may pan out in the future. This also applies to all the state-of-the-art amenities that you may ask your contractor to install in the home.

Verdict

Building a new home is comparatively more expensive than buying an existing home. Still, you get more for your dough. New construction tends to be more spacious, which means the cost per square to build may be lower as opposed to that of already existing.
Another benefit of building a home from the ground up is that you only pay for what you want. When you buy an existing home, you may be made to pay a premium for things you don’t necessarily want. Examples of things you may find in a house are a basketball court and a finished basement.

Contact LVD Group: Award-Winning Home Builders and Home Improvement Experts

LVD Group is proud to have earned a reputation for being one of the best home builders Melbourne of exceptional value and quality. Our vast experience in building new homes and improvement of older ones enables us to tackle any project. Using only the best quality materials and the latest building methods, our engineers remove worry and uncertainty associated with building projects. Serving residents of Melbourne and the surrounding areas for more than 20 years, we go out of the way to ensure the highest possible building standards that give you value for money. Call us today to speak with one of our consultants and learn how we can help you.

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