When you are in the market for a new home, one of the first decisions you face is whether to buy or build your new house. Both options have their share of pros and cons, so how do you decide which option is best for you? Here are four factors we found matter most to clients when determining either to buy an existing property or build the perfect home: cost, design, location, and time. 

Buying an existing home saves a lot of time and is typically less expensive than building a new home, has its own historic character and charm, located in established neighborhoods closer to downtown and shopping areas, and the entire process from house hunting to move in can take less than two months. 

The current average price for an existing single family home in the South (Alabama, Georgia, and Tennessee), according to the National Association of Realtors, is $267,000. However, there are many compromises and often surprise expenses that come with purchasing an existing home. Many existing homes have been hosting families for a long time, so their floor plans, appliances, architecture, and interior designs are out of date and may require renovations, replacements, and repairs that significantly add to your expenses. These older houses are usually much smaller than modern day homes and have fewer amenities and modern conveniences that most of us prefer today, e.g. a master suite, multiple bathrooms, outlets, updated appliances, wiring, and HVAC systems. Outdated systems can be costly to fix and a recurring greater expense in your utility bills, for the systems in older homes are not nearly as energy efficient as today’s models.

Existing homes can offer ideal proximity to shopping centers, work places, and community spaces, but with the average listing selling in 30 days, available homes are limited and in high demand.  Limited houses on the market means fewer neighborhood options which is almost if not just as important as the home itself.

Buying a new-to-you home may be right for you if you are willing to compromise, prepared to renovate or repair overtime, love the antiquated style, and ready to move in A.S.A.P.

If you want to save some money in the long run, custom design every detail of your home, live in a beautiful new community and watch it grow, and make a newly constructed house a home, then building is the way to go.

While the initial cost is greater than that of many existing homes, living in a newly built home eliminates many of the surprise expenses that come with purchasing an older home. New homes are current on building codes, have up to date technology, and may include a warranty to cover any repairs that arise soon after moving in. They are also much more energy efficient than older homes. Energy efficient appliances, insulation, HVAC systems, windows, and solar panels are all options that come with your new home. By building a new energy efficient home, you can save about $200 a year in heating and cooling costs, 30% on cooling costs, and add tremendous value to your home than if you buy an existing home. In addition, TurboTax states that homeowners can claim a tax credit for 10% of the cost of qualified energy efficient improvements and 100% of residential energy property costs. This is an excellent benefit to building a new home. 

According to HomeAdvisor, the current national average price for constructing a new home is $296,288. The cost of building your dream home can be more or less than this average based on your desire. As you select your floor plan, paint color, trim, cabinetry, counters, exterior style and more, remember that building your perfect home is an investment, and if you ever decide to sell the house you design, it is much more profitable for you and valuable to the millennial market because it is new and modern in every way.

As these new homes and neighborhoods are established, it invites new shopping areas and businesses to open nearby. New subdivisions are a community of their own and are not subject to the high noise levels of the city.

Of course, much like the city of Rome, the perfect home isn’t built in a day, but thankfully it doesn’t take one thousand years either. Constructing a new home can take anywhere from three to seven months. This all depends on the details of the house, weather, and the reliability of your builder. An experienced, reputable, and knowledgeable builder, like Hughston Homes, can help you throughout the entire production process of your dream home and will work with excellence to construct your home professionally and efficiently. 

Although building a custom home is more expensive and time consuming than purchasing an existing one, you get to design your home with the materials you want, the floor plan you love, and install modern conveniences. Investing in your dream home now, saves you money in the future by using new and energy efficient materials that cut the frequency of repairs, cost of utility bills, and include a greater resale value to the current and future homebuyers.