Buying, Staging

To Build or To Buy: Pros and Cons of Each

Have you been thinking about moving but you aren’t sure whether you want to build a home or buy an existing home? With builders making up more than 30% of new inventory right now, more people than ever are considering new construction. Today, I’m sharing the pros and cons of each to help you make an informed decision!

Building Pros:

You have more control. You get to pick your perfect house plans and location. If you already have a lot in mind and dream home idea, this is for you!

Make it uniquely you! You can customize your house from top to bottom, and have input on every finish from top to bottom. You get to choose the shingles to the flooring and everything in between. Building is a great option if you have unique style and want a home to match your family’s needs.

You don’t have to fight for your dream home. When you purchase land and start the process with a builder, you can rest assured that you won’t be stuck in a bidding war. That property and the home being built on it is yours, and you get to make it exactly what you want.

Building Cons:

Photo by: Lauren Carnes

Time! This is the biggest issue I see when people are thinking of new construction. Building a home is not a quick and easy process. The time and energy it takes to meet with all the different contractors and decisions can be endless. It can be an emotionally draining process that can really cause stress. This way you can plan ahead as much as possible.

Cost. It’s hard to predict cost when you’re building and it adds up…quickly. You may love the brass hardware for the guest bath, but is it worth going over budget? One more thing to consider in the cost is landscaping. Check with your builder and see if landscaping is included in their pricing, and what level it is if so.

Buying Pros:

Photo by: Lauren Carnes

Time! Like I mentioned above in the “Building Cons”, but this time it’s a positive. You won’t have to wait for construction to finish. Buying a move-in-ready home is a much quicker way to get out of the home you’re currently in.

Cost. Because of the expense of building and the costs that can arise throughout the process, buying a home will generally be the cheaper option. Plus, when you make an offer on a house and the offer is accepted, what you see is what you get. There shouldn’t be hidden costs that pop up as you move closer to closing.

Location. You know those neighborhoods with the pretty, mature trees and landscaping? You can’t really get that in new construction. If you’re looking for a home with a pretty yard and good shade trees, buying an existing home is your best bet. Plus, you can always make upgrades later if it’s not *perfect*.

Buying Cons:

Photo by: Lauren Carnes

Time. I know, I know. It seems like I’m just repeating myself, but some people don’t like spending the time to look at a lot of homes. That can be a deal-breaker. In the kind of market we’re in now, I get it. It’s hard to have the patience and hope that the perfect home will become available. On top of that, when you do find your perfect home, I bet someone else feels the same way. Cue the bidding war. It’s tough out there, BUT, with the right agent who knows what you’re looking for, it can be done 😉

Cost of repairs and updates. Older homes are less energy efficient and will probably need more maintenance than a new build. These are just things to think about and weigh the future costs when you’re searching. Pay attention to the air conditioner, heater, water heater, plumbing, etc. These are things that cost a pretty penny and being aware of how old they are can help you make a wise decision.

The floorplan. When you’re looking at an older home, it may not be set up the way you want. Open concept is the thing right now, but in the 80s and 90s, it felt like a competition to see how many doorways we could fit in a house. So finding the right fit for your family could take a little longer.

What do you think? Have any of these things swayed your decision in the past or are you currently thinking about it? Let me know and if you’re looking for an agent, I’m happy to help!


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