Buying “new construction” is a slightly different process from buying a previously-owned home. Because you are buying directly from the builder and not the person who called it home, you don’t have to deal with a seller’s emotional ties to the property, which can influences the negotiating process. Whether you’re designing and building a custom home or buying a home that’s built on spec in a new subdivision, you’ll only have to work with the builder. Another benefit for buying new construction is the ability to use the builder’s in-house lender which a lot of times will help buyers pay for some of the closing costs.
As with buying a previously-owned home you will still need to figure out your budget and secure financing before you even begin house hunting. You will need to figure out what you can afford based on your financial situation and how much money you want to invest in purchasing your home. Just like buying a previously-owned home you will need to get pre-approved by a bank or mortgage lender.
If you’re considering buying a “new construction” home below are a few tips to help guide you through the process:
- Hire your own agent at the start of your search– Look for someone who is familiar with the buying process of new construction that is NOT affiliated with the builder. Most model homes are staffed with real estate agents that either work directly for the builder or have a relationship with the builder. Your agent will represent you, be your fiduciary and is required to disclose the positives as well as the negatives about the transaction…most builders agents will not discuss the cons. Be sure to have your agent accompany you to the site on your first visit, as some builders will not allow your agent to represent you if you have wandered into the model sales center without representation.
- Research the neighborhoods and builders – Sit down and talk with your buyers agent about your budget, size of home you are looking for, the amenities you would like in the community, the area you would like to be in, and any other criteria you may have. An experienced agent will be able to narrow down your search based on those wants and needs. Once you have narrowed the list down you and your agent can discuss the pros and cons of the neighborhoods as well as information regarding the builders.
- Know what’s standard and what’s extra –Ask the builder about what is standard and what is an upgrade…an upgrade is any added feature or item you pay extra for to enhance your home i.e. flooring, types of appliances, material of the countertops, etc. Get a feature sheet of the model of homes you are interested in so you can compare feature to feature. Have good idea of what you need and want and make your decision on upgrades early in the process…every change you make once construction begins costs money.
This is just of few of the items to consider when looking to purchase a new construction home. Hiring a qualified real estate agent can help make the process much smoother and they are there to guide you through the process to ensure your best interests are met.
Check back with us this week…we will be hi-lighting some of the new communities in the Wesley Chapel and New Tampa area.