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So you are thinking about buying a home this spring, maybe your first home…
If buying a home is next on your BIG TO DO list, then if you are like most , you have at least considered a new home. There are advantages and disadvantages to buying a new home in Charlotte, so I’ll start with what I think are the advantages below, followed by a few disadvantages. Before we get started, just to let you know, we represent Buyers like you in all transactions, and we sell new and re-sale homes every month. Also, I got my start in real estate in new homes more than 30 years ago. And we have marketing agreements promoting some of the better new home builders in the area. That said, lets look closer at the details. First , anyone who ha s been through it knows there is excitement in building a home. When starting with just the dirt, a lot and a plan, you will get to choose your options, and make the house how you want it. If you buy an existing inventory home, you get a brand new home, now, without waiting- I usually like that option best.
Terry’s Top 5 Reasons for Buying a New Home
1. You know what you are getting for your money. You can visit the model, see finished homes, and know what to expect, and if you deal with one of the larger builders, you get the strength of their organization behind the house and warranty. If it is an inventory home where it is “What you See is What you Get,” a to be built, you choose the floor plan, the elevation and the options. You are not buying somebody else’s problem.
2. By buying when the community is far enough along, you will know what the community is going to look like. Sidewalks, walking trails etc. Early in the community’s life, the builder offers discounts on the house s to help get the neighborhood jump started. Prior to the crash, this was a good time to buy- today, I generally take a more cautious approach. There are exceptions though, and many of our builders have shown great strength through the national housing crisis.
3. A new home warranty – And new home warranties? Typically they are “bumper to bumper” materials and labor for a year, and frequently ten or more years on the structure; sure does give you peace of mind.
4. Lower Maintenance Costs- Few would argue the first 5-10 years of a new home has lower costs than a re-sale, because everything in the house is new, and much of it under warranty. This can be quite dramatic when comparing to just a 10 year old home- a home that may, on any day after that 10th year need a new furnace or air conditioner, dishwasher or oven.
5. Much lower energy costs- houses built today are as much as 10x’s more efficient than even a home built ten years ago! Windows with low -E Glass, radiant barriers in the attic, more efficient heating and air, plus Energy Star appliances- these add up to make a big difference in heating and cooling costs, especially when you figure it out over time. For example, on an entry level home, a $100/ mo savings is $1200 per year, and $12,000 over a decade. This is magnified in more expensive custom homes. These add up- and when you figure you (in all likelihood) will not have to replace the big appliances, all the better, in lowering your cost of ownership.
[caption id="attachment_7641" align="alignright" width="300" caption="4 BD/3 BA | from $160's"]
Those are the big advantages to buying a new home- What then are the disadvantages?
I think there are several- the most obvious, if you like tall trees lining your streets, that isn’t a new neighborhood! ( except for the occasional hi-end infill project)
Most people think that when you move in with the big down payment and closing costs that is the big money. In a new home you should expect more in “start-up” expenses, from window covering (blinds, curtains or perhaps plantation shutters) to more on landscaping as builders are minimalists when it comes to your yard. started there.
Every home buyer needs to be careful to not “over-option” a house, and buy so many options that the house has difficulty appraising. Most home owners know if they own a home, they can “over improve” it- you can do the same with a new home. I prefer builders that include more, and option less, this seems to give the community more market strength over time and usually prevents that over improvement…
Check back for more on new homes next week….