Should I Buy a Newly Built Home?

August, 2016

There are good and bad points to any purchase. With a new phone it could be a good camera and bad battery life, but with a home it’s a bit more of a hefty decision. Newly built homes are becoming more and more common, as housebuilders look to quench the nation’s thirst for home ownership. Stay with us as we look at the pros and cons of buying a newly built home.

All yours

There are a few benefits of living in a new-build. They’re modern, and they’re generally more energy efficient than existing homes, making them cheaper to run. Buying directly from housebuilding companies also means there’s no chain to complicate the buying process. To add to that, fresh decoration and fittings mean that your costs are minimised while you’re settling in.

Another obvious attraction of new-builds is that they’re yours and only yours. There’s something weirdly attractive about the prospect of living in a house that’s never been lived in. It’s brand new, which isn’t just appealing for homes. People buy brand new cars knowing that the value drops by half the second they take them on the road. No, houses don’t plummet in value the second you put the kettle on, but there are some interesting price patterns.

Trends

Data released by Zoopla suggests that buyers are paying a significant premium for the supposed privilege of a fresh new home. In April 2016, the price of new-builds went up by 4.6% on average. For so called ‘second-hand’ homes, the price only rose by 0.3%.

To put this into perspective, the average new home cost £254,604 in this period, while the average for existing homes was £205,914. It’s a rise of almost £50,000. Year on year averages match this trend. New-build prices grew by 10.2% over the year, with just 8% for existing houses.

Problems

One problem is that this impressive rise in value doesn’t continue when you buy your new build. Once you’re in, the house is just an existing house. It won’t gain any special rise in price from being recently new-built – every house was a ‘new-build’ at one point. Unfortunately, it doesn’t stop there. Thin walls, small rooms and a lack of storage are common features of newly-built homes. Rose tinted glasses can make this easy to ignore, so be careful. Additionally, because the houses haven’t been lived in, it essentially means they haven’t been test-driven. Small issues like poorly fitted kitchens and incomplete grouting can soon stack up after a few months.

The final verdict

After evaluating the pros and cons, it’s probably more advisable to buy an existing home. Redecoration is a simple way of making it your own, soon enough you’ll forget that anyone else has lived there. Weale and Hitchen have over 25 years’ experience selling homes. With floor plans, aerial photography and viewings seven days a week, we’re the best option for buyers as well as sellers. Get in touch today, or pop into any of our local offices in Bury, Rawtenstall, Ramsbottom, Harwood, and Holcombe Brook.

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