Making the choice to buy an existing MA home and adding your own touches or buying brand new construction can be a difficult choice for many prospective home owners. Old homes can have problems that even a home inspection may miss. Many home buyers like the thought of moving in to a brand new home with all of the work being done by the contractor, and with very little major upkeep in the foreseeable future. However, buying a new construction home in Mass. has a whole different set of challanges.
Things To Remember When Considering New Construction
Always get a Home Inspection: New construction doesn’t mean quality construction and you want to protect yourself. It’s always worth spending the $300-$600 for a home inspection. The Mortgage Buddy never recommends you cut corners when it comes to protecting your investment.
Get a Home Warranty: Most builders have a 1-2yr warranty that cover major items like heating systems, and electrical items. Be sure you understand what the warranty does & does not cover and whether the builder is issuing a warranty, or a third part company. Also consider buying a home warranty to fills any gaps that the builder’s warranty does not cover. Many warranties will cost $350 to $600 a yr.
Research the Builder: It’s important to do your research on the builder. The Mortgage Buddy recommends starting with your local Better Business Bureau. Then check with the public records to see if there are any pending or past lawsuits against the builder.
Walk around the Neighborhood: If the opportunity presents itself knock on some doors and ask your future neighbors if there have been any issues with the construction of the homes or the follow-up by the builder on any promised upgrades or warranty issues. Or, visit other homes previously completed by the builder.
Know What’s Standard and What’s Extra: The shiny new model home with all the bells and whistles screamed to you that you had found your new home. But, buyers need to carefully review and have detailed out what is and what is not included in the purchase price of their home. There should be a “spec sheet” available. Many new homes include only the basics, so any upgrades for granite, landscaping, gutters, stainless appliances, color choices or other upgrade “extras” can add up quickly.
New Developments: If you are buying in a new development, and are counting on certain amenities such as a pool or playground, keep in mind it may take years for the entire project to be completed (if at all). Certain parts of the development may be years out such as finished roads, cable or landscaping. In the interim, keep in mind the continuing construction noise.
In House “Preferred” Lender: In many cases, the builder will have a lender who is preferred. The buyer is not obligated to use that lender when purchasing the property. The buyer has the legal right to choose their own lender.