Should you buy a new build or older home? There are pros and cons for both options and it also depends on your personal preference, budget and location. Before you make a final decision here are a few things to consider.
If you’ve always wanted to live in a house with high ceilings and original features then a new build is not for you. But, if you want a low maintenance house that is ready to move into then buying a house off-plan could be the answer.
Benefits of new builds
One of the main attractions of moving into a new build has got to be that it is brand spanking new! Everything is clean and untouched with no need to decorate – just unpack and go.
Buyers can often select the fixtures and fittings to customise the finish to their taste.
A new build is more energy efficient saving you money on your heating bills. Double-glazing, insulated roofs and airtight doors are installed as standard.
Some builders offer incentives such as deals on stamp duty and cash back. They also offer a 10-year warranty from the National House Building Council (NHBC).
Drawbacks of new builds
The show house looks amazing but will your furniture fit inside? Some new homes are quite small so you need to check that you have space for your wardrobes. Make sure you know what’s included in the price. Is that shiny high spec kitchen standard or will it cost you extra? Are carpets and flooring included? Gardens are often smaller too and don’t always come with a lawn.
Although everything is new there will undoubtedly be a snag list of things that need to be replaced or fixed. Snagging should be done before completion to ensure repairs are made before moving in. You can check the property yourself or employ a snagging company to do it for you.
New homes are not always in the best locations for transport links and shops. They are usually built on the outskirts of town so owning a car is a necessity.
Photo credit: flickr.com/photos/lydiashiningbrightly
Advantages of old homes
Many people love older homes as they have more character and traditional features such as fireplaces and picture rails.
Rooms in old houses are generally bigger with plenty of storage. Outside is also larger with more space for the kids to run around. Gardens are more likely to be well established, so no need to spend lots of money on planting.
Downsides of older homes
As the house is old it could mean the wiring, plumbing and roof is also old and needs replacing. Make sure your surveyor checks everything so you know you’re not buying a money pit!
Often, an old house will need renovating or decorating to make it your own. This is fine if you don’t mind the inconvenience of living in the house while the work is completed.
Whether you prefer old or new as long as you have done your homework and know the costs involved, either one could become your dream home.