Do I buy or do I build?
By Richard Miller
In an evolving Real Estate market, careful consideration and assistance from experienced and qualified professionals can help you decide what course of action is better for you, and result in not only a more satisfying environment which to call home, but a better overall financial investment as well.
There are several factors that need to be considered when an individual decides to commit to a long term living solution that addresses not only their immediate needs, but allows for easily incorporating the inevitable changes that occur as we live our daily lives. Chances are that if you are reading this, you have arrived at a point in your life where you have decided that you have reached this important milestone and have intensely personal reasons for starting this journey, only to find the myriad of choices laid out before you a little daunting. Perhaps overwhelming. As you have probably been told at several points in your life, this is a good time to slow down a little and ask for some assistance. The best thing about that? There are people right here at the Barbara Carter Team who like nothing better than to share their knowledge and experience with people just like you, it’s what we do.
In the most basic terms, all of those complex and seemingly endless choices that crop up with every additional internet search you do can be put in their place if you start your decision making process with one concept in mind: your ultimate decision will be made based on convenience and cost.
Time constraints are a very real part of our increasingly busy daily lives, and form the foundation of convenience in the vast majority of Real Estate transactions. There are several time related advantages to purchasing a pre-existing home, the process is very straightforward once the various financial considerations have been satisfied. A buyer (you!) has been preapproved for certain mortgage amount, and a Licensed Real Estate agent (us!) stands ready to walk you through not only the listings that meet your requirements in a home, but also the process that will lead to the keys to that home being placed in your hand. On average, the U.S. Census Bureau reports that the typical time frame for the building of a new home is just about 7 months, while Ellie Mae relates that the average time to close on the purchase of a pre-existing home is 45 days. Both of these time frames can be affected by a number of factors of course, but the underlying fact is that purchasing is a significantly faster process by any standard. If time constraints are a significant concern in your search, focusing on pre-existing homes that meet your requirements from a financial and physical space perspective would appear to be the proper course of action.
There is no escaping the fact that dreams come with a cost. From a cost vantage point, the National Association of Home Builders relate that the average cost of building a new home in the past year was $485,000.00, and the average cost to purchase a pre-existing house was $309,000.00, a difference of $177,00.00. WHOA, hold the phone, why would anyone choose to build over buying an already existing home? I’m glad you asked, because the answer is more involved than numbers on a page. Generally speaking, new construction homes meet more rigorous requirements regarding materials and building processes, utilize more energy efficient technology, come with major components of the home and appliances (HVAC components, appliances, materials) covered by warranty, and can be a more financially sound long term investment. Factor in possible upgrades or alterations that may need to be addressed in an existing home, and the monetary difference between the two options begins to shrink significantly. Customization of the building process to incorporate home offices, storage spaces, outdoor living space access, and a myriad of other considerations can make building a very attractive option. Landscaping and the situating of the home on the property to take advantage of the natural aspects of the land are important considerations as well.
At this point, you are probably a little less overwhelmed, but still in need of some expert guidance with your process, and that is perfectly understandable and expected. No one is so much of a research expert that they can simultaneously meet their daily work obligations and conduct in-depth searches into every facet of buying or building real estate and properties. We do this full time and are constantly taking advantage of educational offerings and best practices seminars while working alongside of professionals in Real Estate and the Building trades on a daily basis. You can read further about this and other facets of Real Estate processes right here, on the Barbara Carter Team website, and you can reach out to us at any time with any questions or concerns as you work your way through making this important decision.