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Kathy S. Koops GRI

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4 Things to Know Before Building a New Home

filed under: Real Estate posted on February 1st, 2016

Cincinnati Real Estate

Trying to make a major home buying decision?  4 Things to know before building a new home.

Are you ready to tackle new construction?  Have you have been house hunting for months and the thought of moving into a “used home” is turning you off?   Have you reached the stage where you are running in and out of new homes in various states of completion?  Most likely your mind is starting to accept the fact that building a new home isn’t all that complicated.  There is something so intriguing about being the first to live in a home it’s new, it’s clean and hopefully,  all the colors match your furnishings….or you have some money left and can buy some new furniture.

Whether you are building a multi million dollar palace or contracting to build in a local subdivision, there are 4 things you need to know:

1. Know the builder

2. Know if your personality is suited to building

3. Know your budget

4.  Have some money in reserve

  1. Check out the builder, don’t hesitate to ask for references, check with the Better Business Bureau and drive around the neighborhood and talk to the neighbors.  Many (but not all) require substantial down-payments and you need to do your research prior to signing on the dotted line.  You are probably wondering why I would even suggest “due diligence” since it is so obvious-yet you would be amazed at how many buyers sign first and discover problems later.  Is you builder a member of the Home Builders Association?  If yes, they have agreed to abide to a set of industry standards for construction and repairs.
  2. Not everybody is suited to building a new home. Delays, construction issues, changing plans as the home progresses, cabinets not quite the shade you ordered often leaves some buyers regretting they ever began the project.  On the other hand, if you can handle a moment or two (or three or four or five) of stress, building a home can be worth the effort.  We have built 3 times and I would build again in a heartbeat.  (and yes we did encounter some stressful moments)
  3. Budgeting is critical, even if you have signed to build a home in a subdivision.  The normal buyer is usually not happy with things like light fixtures, quality of the carpet or the appliances.  These add-ons can significantly increase the final cost.  Take a close look at the fixtures, carpet/padding, appliances, furnace capacity and so on.   Make sure you spend your building dollars on items that are very expensive to upgrade later.  You can always upgrade carpet or light fixtures after a few years, it is much more difficult to add a few feet to the family room or additional space to the garage.  Also, many builders charge you for every “change” order after you make your final selections.
  4. Have some money in reserve.  You’ve budgeted and planned but “things” can happen.  Having a house or condo to sell can add some unknown costs.  Moving, landscaping, window treatments and the list goes on- all cost money.  And nobody wants to be house poor.  It’s not fun to move into a resale or a new home and not be able to eat out or go to a movie for once in awhile.

Using common sense, doing your research and having patience are all part of building a new home.  If you have some questions or concerns – Call/Txt

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