Nutown Realty
Central Ohio New Home Specialists

Columbus Ohio's Builder Guide

Buying a New vs Existing Home

Article by Jim Maurer - Monday March 18th, 2013

There are many advantages to buying a new home and some disadvantages. Explore our list of pros and cons below.

New Home Existing Home
Built to today's building codes and standards This is a big one. Building codes and building standards are constantly evolving. Even a home built five years ago is not as study, weather resistant, safe, and energy efficient as homes built today. Here is a -huge- difference in homes built twenty or more years ago. With a new home, you are simply getting a better constructed home. Built to older building codes and standards.
Age of home From the woodwork, floors, and counter tops, to the furnace, water, heater and roof, everything is brand new and many items will be under warrantee. These items will be at different levels of repair and condition. The furnace, roof and other expensive items may have a limited life left.
Home to fit your family Add a four foot extention to your family room. Change that loft into a fourth bedroom. Add a bathroom to the finished basement. There are many items you can add to fit your families specific needs or wants. If you have specific wants and needs, you are less likely to find them all in an existing home in the right location. You typically need to compromise.
Decorated to your specifications You pick out the room colors, cabinets and counter top colors and even get to choose your light fixtures. There will probably be many items you want to change. Painting and carpet are almost always needed and can be a big expense after you move in.
New Home Existing Home
Financing terms Builders negotiate with lenders to get better loan terms for their clients. Lower interest rates and lower fees are often possible. Many builders also have work equity programs. These programs allow you to paint, mulch, and do other easy tasks to lower or eliminate your down payment. Work equity programs are not available for existing homes. Because you are only arranging a loan for one house, you won't have the loan negotiating power the builders have.
Energy efficiency Homes today are built from the ground up with energy efficiency in mind. Air leaks are sealed, plenty of insulation installed, and energy efficient furnaces and water heaters are used. Older homes were not sealed as well or their seals have worn out. Insulation settles and older furnaces and water heaters are not as efficient.
Age of community You will be living in a new community. They may be building homes in your community for a number of years. Half constructed homes and dirt lawns may be part of your community for a while. Mature neighborhoods have large trees and no or little construction going on.
New Home Existing Home
Time till move in Typical build time from contract signing to move in is six months. If you are wanting to move into a new home sooner, a builder spec home might be the answer. Builders start these homes without a specific buyer in mind. Many times buyers buy these before they are completed so they can still choose colors, cabinets, counter tops, etc. Time from contract signing to move in on an existing home is typically 45 to 60 days.

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