4 Things to Look for in a New Home Builder
When you’re thinking about buying a home, you have two choices: purchase an existing home that someone currently lives in and is trying to sell, or purchase a brand new home from a home-builder. There are benefits to each, but for many the idea of owning a brand new home and having the ability to choose some personal touches during construction are enough to swing the pendulum in favor of new construction. Since the overall quality, safety, and aesthetic appeal of your future home rests so heavily on the builder, there are four things you need to look for before you sign a contract for a new home.
1: Location, Location, Location
Not all builders offer new homes in the places you want to live, and not all places you might want to live will have builders offering new construction. If you have a builder in mind, carefully review their available neighborhood locations, visit the neighborhoods where they are planning to build, and also check to make sure they offer a floorplan that you would like in that neighborhood. If you’re thinking about a specific area, you can search online to find out if there are new home builders offering construction in the vicinity, or visit the neighborhood and check to see if there are any builders’ signs. If you’re planning to purchase in a neighborhood that has not been built yet, or in a partially-finished neighborhood, make sure you do a little research on the area first (will it be the same builder or another one, how many lots are sold and how many still vacant, are there any parks or open spaces planned, etc.)
2: Compare Builder Construction Quality
Before you settle on any builder, make sure you take some time to compare the quality of construction. You can look at model homes, but keep in mind that model homes often include optional upgrades, so you may also ask to see a home that is closer to what you plan to build to make the best decision.
3: Understand Your Options
One of the great benefits of new home construction is that you often have the chance to customize some parts of the home and make it uniquely yours. Many builders will offer a “base” model with specific materials for flooring, paint, counters, cabinets, and more, then allow homeowners to upgrade if they would like something different. They may also offer the ability to make some limited changes to the floor plan, but before you buy, make sure you understand how much you can customize, and what parts of your home are going to be customizable as well as any things that cannot be changed.
4: Learn More About Financing
New home construction is unique when it comes to financing because there are actually two things that must be financed by a lender—the construction and the finished home. Some builders will cover the construction loan and you will only need to get a mortgage for the finished project, while others might require that you take out a construction loan before the home is finished. If you don’t fully understand the process, make sure to talk to a lender who can explain it to you so you know what your obligations will be. Once you know what you want and find the homebuilder
who has available homes in the neighborhood that you want, the next step is to make sure you get it all in a written and signed contract so you can be on your way to getting your dream home.