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Resale vs. New Build. Which Is Right For You?

Things to consider when making a decision about whether to buy a newly built home or a pre-existing home.

Jennifer Adams

Here are the typical questions I am asked by a buyer looking at new homes. Will I need an inspection? What will the builder’s warranty cover? Do I need an agent? The short answer is yes and here is why.

All buyers should have interviewed agents prior to looking at homes. A buyer’s agent works in the best interest of the buyer. The builder’s agent works in the best interest of the builder. Your buyer’s agent will negotiate for your best interest with the builder’s agent to ensure that you get the warranty needed, inspection time frame aligned and most importantly, the RIGHT price. Some builders may require using their in-house lender. Your buyer’s agent can help you navigate this obstacle.

If you are looking for high energy efficiency, look for a new home. Or, a newly renovated home. 

Heating and Air Conditioning: The typical furnace has a 20-year life expectancy; the typical central air system 15 years. Replacing them could cost you $4,100 for an air conditioning unit and $3,675 and up for the furnace, depending on the system you choose.

Roof: The average shingled roof lasts about 25 years. Replacement costs can be anywhere from $5,000 up.

Then there is also a desire to live in an area where the only homes for sale are new builds. But then again maybe you are looking at an area that only has resales. 

I cannot say this enough, a buyer’s agent works in the interest of the buyer. A seller’s agent works in the interest of a seller. Everyone should have their own agent. 

Pre-existing homes may be the way or only way to go for you. Choose an agent to help you find a home that fits your family and your budget. Renovations costs can be high, and there are unknowns. It is recommended to always have a licensed home inspector thoroughly check out a home prior to purchasing. Here are some renovation costs.

Master Bath Remodel: $15,000 and up. Kitchen Remodel: Anywhere from $20,000 to $40,000.

Interior Painting: Again, with a new house, you choose the wall colors of the rooms as part of the package. With an existing house, you’re probably going to want to repaint some of the interiors. Even if you do it yourself, it will cost money and time.

You may plan to live in your next home many years, but at some point, most people sell a given home for any of a myriad of reasons. While the home you sell will (by definition) no longer be new, a 5-7-year-old home will often be more desirable — given all the features above — than a 25-year-old home at resale.

At the end of the day, it’s probably okay to consider both new and used homes when looking for a property. As long as you take the time to inspect the property and the neighborhood, negotiate the right price, and make sure you can afford the home, you should be on your way to a solid home purchase.

Jennifer Adams is a Real Estate Agent with Adams Realty Group. Jennifer can be reached directly at 404.944.5933 and by email at Jennifer.AdamsRealtyGroup@gmail.

Jennifer Adams
Adams Realty Group
C 404.944.5933
O 770.623.8400
PalmerHouse Properties Affiliate
3200 Peachtree Industrial Blvd. • Suite 300
Duluth, GA 30096