Buy Existing Home or Build a New Home? Tips to Help You Decide
The idea of moving to a new Salt Lake City home
is exciting, but before you start packing up your home and scheduling a mover, you need to decide if you are going to build a home (new construction) or buy something that is already built. Many homeowners don’t really know if there are advantages or disadvantages to each, so here are a few tips to help you decide which is best for you.
Building a new home will take longer than buying a home that is already built—it’s not good or bad, necessarily, it’s just the reality of new construction. Most new homes will take a few months, while an existing home will take only the time required to put in an offer, get it approved, and for the sellers to move. There are a few options that provide the best of both worlds—new construction plus a short move-in timeline—but these quick move-in homes are not guaranteed to be available in the style and neighborhood and from the new home builder that you want.
Budget for Existing or Building
Building a new home can be more expensive than purchasing an existing home, especially if raw material prices are high at the time, or if you want to build during peak season (spring and summer) when contractors are busy. You may also decide that you want to include upgrades from the base model offered by the builder, which can increase your final purchase price.
Perhaps the number one reason that most people want to build their own home is the ability to customize it so the finished product is exactly what you want. You can choose from different floorplans, pick out carpet colors, cabinets, flooring, and more so the layout, designs, and décor fit your style. To customize an existing home you would have to purchase it and then pay for remodeling with a home equity loan, credit cards, or cash.
Brand new homes come with brand new things, including appliances, wiring, plumbing, and more. They are thoroughly inspected during the process so you get a safe home with items that are likely to still work—and if they don’t, quality new home builders will offer a warranty to fix it within the first few months or years.
Finally, building a new home may also come with some additional costs that won’t be built into the mortgage, such as landscaping or window coverings. Be sure you budget for these things so you don’t find out that you have a wonderful new home, but you cannot afford to create the aesthetic that you want. There is no right or wrong choice, it depends on your needs, but it’s important to understand the tradeoffs between the two so you can figure out which home option
is best for your situation.