In the past, newly constructed homes tended to cost more than older homes. However, due to drastic changes within the real estate market over the past several years, older homes may cost just as much as newer homes, especially if you’re planning to purchase in a particularly active market.
While some people don’t appreciate hand-me-downs, other prospective buyers may prefer to purchase a home that has plenty of history. A newly constructed home may feature modern amenities, but older ones have a unique story to tell. As you weigh whether to invest in brand-new or pre-owned home, consider the pros and cons of each type.
Benefits of New Construction
Brand-new homes typically come fully stocked with new appliances and materials, from the HVAC system and roof to the dishwasher and stove. As a result, you may not have to spend as much money maintaining the property. Purchasing a home warranty may offer enough protection for you to be able to avoid having to pay for costly repairs until years in the future.
Even if you’re not interested in purchasing a custom home, many newly constructed homes offer the option to upgrade builder-grade finishes to your specifications as long as the construction isn’t completed yet.
Many builders have their own mortgage divisions and financing departments. Since a builder’s primary goal is to sell the home as quickly as possible, they may be more than willing to work with you to get the deal finished.
Newer appliances tend to be more energy efficient than older models. Additionally, more energy efficient building materials such as insulation and windows allow newer homes to retain cooler air during warm weather and warmer air during cooler weather, resulting in lower utility bills.
If you’re in the market for a custom-built property, the contractor will work with you to determine the layout that works best for you. If you decide to purchase a pre-built new construction property, the floor plan will most likely feature a modern layout with an open floor plan. In new construction homes, rooms like bedrooms and bathrooms tend to be more spacious with plenty of natural light.
Planned communities usually feature a variety of amenities like community spaces, parks and walking trails. Some newly built homes also allow the option for you to integrate smart home technology, so automating your television, speakers, alarm system and smart appliances is an effortless process.
Benefits of Pre-Owned Homes
With newer construction homes being built in up-and-coming areas due to less available space, it may be easier to find that perfect home in the most desirable location by purchasing a pre-owned property. You may be able to find a used home that offers walking distance to work or some of your favorite restaurants and shops.
Since they were constructed decades ago, older homes have already weathered many storms. Some may have been built by genuine craftsmen who understood the importance of paying attention to detail throughout each aspect of the construction process.
More Outdoor Space
Homes that have been recently constructed often have limited outdoor space. Older homes that were built when land was less expensive may feature larger yards and lot sizes. Some are also surrounded by mature trees that help to shade the home during warmer weather and protect it against cool winds during the wintertime.
Charm and Character
If you’re searching for interesting architectural details in your new home, you’re more likely to find what you’re looking for in an older property vs. a newer one. Hand-carved detailing and attractive décor such as stained-glass and arches are more prevalent in pre-owned homes. Popular styles unique to older homes include Colonial, Tudor, craftsman bungalow, and Victorian.
Since older homes are usually located in more established neighborhoods, you won’t be hearing the annoying sounds of loud construction noises that accompany living next to multiple homes that are in the process of being built. Chances are also less likely that the neighborhood will be inundated with new restaurants and shops in the future due to more established zoning regulations.
The Opportunity to Personalize
If you purchase a pre-owned home and you’re not satisfied with some of its finishes, you’ll always have time to add your own touch to it in the future. While a new construction property may allow you the option to pick which fixtures you prefer, builders often only provide a few different features to choose from. With an older home, you can pick exactly what you want, and any upgrades you make will only appreciate the value of the property.
Deciding between purchasing a new or old home will largely depend on your goals as a homeowner. While there are definite perks and drawbacks to each type of property, hopefully, the above pros and cons will help you make a more informed decision.