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Tips for Buying a New Construction Home

Buying a newly constructed home differs in some respects from buying a home that’s been previously owned. Without a previous tenant or owner, there’s less of an emotional factor to the negotiations. By dealing directly with the builder, whether it’s a custom home or not, there’s likely to be a more straightforward process.

Nonetheless, that doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t be careful and thorough when buying a new construction home. There are certain aspects you’ll want to consider, so read on to learn some helpful tips for buying a new construction home!

And if you need assistance selling your house or are looking for a new home in Isle of Palms, SC, contact Jimmy Carroll Realty today

Understand the Basics

There are substantial perks to buying a newly built home. You can typically count on a more energy-efficient home, for one, and you generally won’t need to worry about making any immediate repairs.

That said, not all new construction homes are the same. You might purchase a plot of land and hire an architect and builder to construct your dream home. Or you might simply buy a recently built home and be the first owner. 

There are three common options when it comes to new construction homes:

  • On spec: The home is finished, and you’re buying it as is.
  • Semi-custom: You have some customization possibilities, but they’re limited.
  • Full custom: It’s 100% your say on all aspects.

Consider New Construction Timing

tips for buying a new construction home

Now that you know the basics of a new construction home, it’s important to consider another major aspect: construction timing. Due to all kinds of factors, the construction of a new home can easily get hung up: bad weather, supply chain issues, permit approvals, etc.

In general, the closer to completion, the faster the whole process should take, as there are less likely to be significant delays (though never say “never”). Typically, builders can construct homes in a three- to seven-month range, but it’s not at all unusual for delays to push things back to more than a year.

As such, consider the build option that’s best for you. If you need to leave your current living situation right away, a fully custom home might end up taking longer than you can afford. In this case, semi-custom or on spec are probably a better option. 

Research Your Builder

Did you know that you likely have a local home builders’ association? Try checking the National Association of Home Builders. This is a good way to find builders in your area, but you can always check the real estate section of your local paper.

You want to ensure that your builder is not only a good fit for you but also has a good reputation and track record. The Better Business Bureau can be a good place to check out builders. You can also ask for recommendations from friends, family, colleagues, or realtors.

Set Up a Detailed Budget

tips for buying a new construction home

There are all kinds of expenses when it comes to a newly constructed home, particularly if you’ve chosen a fully or semi-custom home. In order to not go beyond your budget, carefully consider as many factors as possible. Some commonly overlooked factors include:

  • Homeowners Associations – If your property is in a neighborhood that has a homeowner’s association, you’ll likely be on the hook for monthly fees. Plus, these associations often have property standards that could cost you in other ways—for example, in landscaping.
  • Landscaping – Speaking of landscaping, your lawn will often need to be set up after the house has been built. It’s a good idea to consider the design and cost of your ideal lawn.
  • Furnishings – Small furnishings such as towel racks or toilet paper holders aren’t necessarily covered in many contracts. As such, you’ll want to leave room in your budget for these types of furnishings. 

Double Up on Home Inspections

Twice is nice when it comes to home inspections for a newly built home. There should be an initial inspection before the major construction is finished (e.g. when walls are closed off). Doing two inspections like this will make it much more cost effective to repair electrical or plumbing problems since the drywall won’t have gone up yet.

Hire Your Own Agent and Lender

tips for buying a new construction home

Some people who are buying a newly built home might think that they have less to worry about, given that there’s been no previous owner. That may be the case in some respects, but not in others. For example, just because you will be the first owner doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t build a team around you.

Take the time to research and interview an agent so that you can hire the one that’s the best fit for you. You should also plan on checking out multiple mortgage lenders so that you can lock down the best deal. Builders tend to have agents and preferred lenders to recommend you. While this may be convenient, oftentimes you’ll end up paying longer over time. Doing your due diligence can mean considerable savings by the end of the loan.


Choose Jimmy Carroll Realty

We hope you’ve found this blog helpful when considering tips for buying a new construction home! If you’re ready to sell your current property or start looking for your dream home, reach out to Jimmy Carrol Realty today. We’ll be more than happy to introduce you to the best available properties in the Isle of Palms, SC area, which you’re certain to love. We look forward to helping you!

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