Should You Buy An Existing Home In Florida Or New Construction

Dated: August 31 2020

Views: 1917

Should You Buy an Existing Home in Florida or New Construction?

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Finding the right home to purchase in Pinellas County or the Greater Tampa Bay area of Florida is one of the biggest challenges for potential home buyers right now due to limited inventory and more buyers than sellers in our housing market. With so few homes for sale and construction of newly built homes ramping up, you may be wondering if you should consider a new construction home in your search process. It’s a great question to ask, and one to look at from the pros and cons of what it means to buy a new construction home versus an existing one. 

Here are a few things to consider when making the best decision for your family:

New Construction Homes

When buying a new home, you can often choose more energy-efficient options. New appliances, new windows, a new roof, etc. These can all help lower your energy costs, which can add up to significant savings over time. With programs like ENERGY STAR, your new home also helps protect the environment and reduces your carbon footprint.

Lower maintenance that comes with a newer home is another great benefit. When you buy a new home, you likely won’t have as many little repairs to tackle, like leaky faucets, shutters to paint, and other odd jobs around the house. With new construction, you’ll also have warranty options that may cover portions of your investment for the first few years.

Many home buyers should also consider the cost savings they'll likely received when it comes to getting homeowner's insurance on a new construction home. In many cases, a new construction home is MUCH CHEAPER to insure than a similar, but older home that was built before 2001 when building codes weren't as stringent as they are now. The difference in a policy for an older wood frame home vs a newer concrete block home can be well over $400/month in savings sometimes. Talk to your insurance agent for advice on this before buying a home!

Another solid benefit to new construction is customization. Do you want a mudroom, stainless steel appliances, granite counter tops, hardwood floors, an office, or a multipurpose room to homeschool your children? These items can be customized to your specific needs during the design phase. With an existing home, you’re buying something that’s already completed, so if you want to make changes, you may need to hire a contractor to help get your home ready for your family. In Pinellas County, contractors are also working during one of their busiest times, so renovating an older home could take longer than you think if your contractor is delayed or too busy to start a new project right away. 

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Existing Homes

When buying an existing home in Florida, you can negotiate with the current homeowner on the sale price, which is something you generally don’t get to do with a builder. Builders know their material and construction costs, and they have a price set for the model you’re buying. So, if you want to negotiate, then maybe an existing home will be best as builders will rarely come down in price. 

For many families, having an established neighborhood is also important. Some buyers like to know the neighbors, if it’s family-friendly, and traffic patterns before making a commitment. When you buy new construction, you won’t have a full view of some of those details until the lots around you are sold.

Finally, timing comes into play. With an existing home, you can move in based on the timeline you agree to with the sellers. With new construction, you need to wait for the house to be built. Depending on the time of the year you’re buying and the region you’re in, the weather can also be a factor in the timeframe. This is something really important to keep in mind, especially if you need to move sooner rather than later. It is VERY common for new construction to have delays and often times the timeframe builders give you for completion is delayed (We have a joke in our office about adding 90 days to any date builders give you on a new build that hasn't broken ground yet).

Bottom Line

Whether you want to buy a newly built home or one that’s already established in Florida, both are great options. They each have their pros and cons, and every family will have different circumstances driving their decision. If you have questions and want to know more about the options in the Tampa Bay Area of Florida when it comes to buying a new construction home, let’s connect today so you can feel confident making a decision about your next home.

See a List of New Construction Homes in Pinellas County HERE

See a List of New Construction Homes in Tampa, Lakewood Ranch, Bradenton & more, by clicking HERE

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Jesse Lee Templeton

Originally from Ohio, Jesse prides himself on providing unmatched real estate services and market knowledge in the Tampa Bay, FL real estate market. He is committed to offering real estate solutions t....

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