Purchase A New Or Existing Home: Weighing The Pros And Cons

When buying a home there seems to be a never ending list of pros and cons, it feels like you’re constantly on a scale.  One of the bigger choices you must have to make is do you buy a new home or an existing home. There are many pros and cons to each, at the end of the day you need to weigh the options and find the rights for you.

New Home Pros
The excitement of getting a brand new home is unbelievable. Everything is untouched and you will be the first to use everything from the appliances to the garage door.  Some of the key pros to buying a new build are:

  • Less maintenance than an older home. You’re not stuck with others people problems
  • The home is customized to your liking and upgraded the way you want it.
  • It’s more energy-efficient and could cost less month to month on gas, water and electric.
  • Many new homes come wired with updated technology for entertainment, computers and security.
  • It’s a blank canvas for decorating. You won’t be stuck with previous owners decisions.
  • If in a new subdivision, often parks and amenities are easily accessible.
  • Warranties can often come with new build. Appliances and construction warranties can be a good safety net if something goes wrong.

New Home Cons
There are many pros to buying a new build, but those pros often come with some fine print known as the cons. Here are a few.

  • Timing is tough and construction often comes with delays.
  • Can be more expensive than an existing home. Land values often fluctuate.
  • You could be living in a construction site for some time while the neighborhood finishes developing.  That means noise, mud, trucks and many workers.
  • Your yard is a blank canvas, but landscaping can be pretty costly.
  • Your neighborhood is developing and it’s unsettling not knowing what is going to be in the area, businesses, homes, neighbors. It’s a big question mark.
  • There can be additional costs like HOA fees, and other assessment fees.

That’s the new home. What about an existing home?  Here are some pros and cons to purchasing an existing home.

Existing Home Pros

  • Pricing of materials may have been cheaper when the home was built. Therefore you could get more for your money.
  • Appliance and window treatments are often included.
  • Mature landscaping can offer privacy.
  • Unique architecture elements. You can avoid the cookie cutter look.
  • The neighborhood is usually established takes out the big question mark.
  • Price of homes and the neighborhood are directly related. You won’t guess the value.
  • Upgrades may have already been done; you won’t have to pay for them.

Existing Home Cons

  • Most likely the home won’t be as efficient as a new build.
  • Renovations that have been completed may not be to current codes.
  • You could inherit previous owners’ problems and have to renovate or repair.
  • You may have to change the décor to match your style. That can be expensive and take time.

As you can see there are many pros and cons to each and every homebuyer as their own opinions. In the battle of new homes vs. existing homes the pros and cons are relatively close.  Ultimately it’s up to you and the things you find important in your next home.

Content provided by Real Estate and Lifestyle contributor Bruce Zander, blogger for The Meadows.