Laying the Groundwork: Tips for a Newly Constructed Home

How to Buy a New Construction HomeA newly constructed house is a dream come true for so many buyers because it symbolizes a fresh start and a new life. In addition to a blank slate, many assume that a new house will be free of problems because it hasn't yet undergone the wear and tear of time yet. But it's these feelings that often get in the way of the reality of new construction home. From mismanaged timelines to shoddy workmanship, it's time to learn more about how to set the groundwork for a successful home purchase.

The Good

Unlike most homes on the market, no one has an emotional attachment to the property which a buyer can use to their advantage. The builder is looking to maximize their profits, and every day the house sits empty is a day they're losing money. Sellers of newly constructed homes know that it's better to take $350,000 for the property today than $375,000 for a property six months down the line. They're constantly taking the temperature of the market so they don't settle for less than the property is worth, but a brand new home that's been on the market for longer than a month will likely be a bargain for the buyer.

The Bad

A seller may not have an emotional attachment to the home, but they do have a business to uphold. If they drop the price once, it usually means that all future buyers will expect the same consideration. So the deal the buyer negotiates may have to be slightly less obvious for the seller to agree to it. The seller may throw in an upgraded bathroom or kitchen for no extra charge for instance, or they may cover all of the closing costs rather than drop the initial price of the home.

The Messy

New construction is subject to weather, equipment failure, and regulation compliance. It's basically the perfect storm for everything and anything to go wrong, and buyers need to set realistic expectations from the very beginning. Of course, that doesn't mean that a buyer should just accept all excuses. A light snow or drizzle of rain, for example, shouldn't set the timeline back because workers can still do their jobs in those conditions. Local ordinances may legitimately cause drastic delays, so it's important that buyers work with a seller who has both experience and success in the area they're building, be it in areas like Tuscany or elsewhere.

Jot It Down

It's always better to have more detail in the contract than less, especially when it comes to buying a newly constructed home. Specifics will make it far easier to get the necessary leverage if anything goes wrong. Before making an offer, prospective buyers need to have the home inspected to ensure it's up to code. If the home is still in construction after you make the offer, there needs to be set consequences if there are any mistakes or false representations on the seller's part.

Do the Homework

A real estate agent can be the key to navigating a new construction home, but you'll still want to do the legwork on where you buy. A property that's built in a quiet neighborhood right now might not be so quiet once a nearby Wal-Mart is built in two years. There's no reason for the seller to offer this kind of information, and they may not even know about future plans in the first place.

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