There are a number of common home buying pitfalls and this is true, even with new construction. Many people believe newly built homes are essentially flawless, save minor defects. But, that’s simply not the case. New construction homes are built from a variety of contractors and it’s unrealistic to think the developer can keep up with everything going on. Mistakes are made and in some instances, corners are cut. Which means there are at least a few big new construction home buying mistakes you need to know about.
Biggest New Construction Home Buying Mistakes
Here in Orlando, new construction is everywhere. Several developers are building new residential communities. So, there’s certainly no lack of choice. But, you must choose wisely so you do not find yourself in the unenviable position of being plagued with buyer’s remorse. Once you sign the contract, you are more or less locked-in legally. And, while there are ways to back out of buying a house, you should avoid any potential problems by being proactive.
“The housing market is hot, thanks to favorable interest rates and home prices that remain relatively low around much of the country. But along with a hot housing market comes increased competition for homes. Given the complexities associated with the costs of buying a house, jumping into the market and effectively competing with aggressive bids can be daunting. If done wrong, a home purchase can result in enough financial regrets to last a lifetime for homebuyers.” —CNBC.com
The great thing about new construction homes is they have a number of advantages. Of course, the most obvious is they are new, never before lived in by someone else. Also, you’re able to choose from different upgrade options. Also, these properties are build according to the latest construction code standards, require less maintenance upfront, need few repairs, and provide a peace-of-mind warranty. But, this doesn’t mean it’s a total worry free process. Here are the biggest new construction home buying mistakes you should know about:
- Not hiring an experienced real estate agent. The builder will have real estate agents on-site, giving tours of model homes and those ready for sale. But, being contracted by the builder means those individuals have an interest. So, hire a real estate professional of your own to represent you and protect your best interests.
- Foregoing research on the builder. You should get as much background as possible on the builder. Look into previous projects to see the finished products. Also, conduct a search through the local clerk of the court’s office to see if the builder is involved in civil suits as a defendant. Additionally, look the builder up on the Better Business Bureau website.
- Not asking specific questions about what’s included. A significant number of new construction home buyers go in with an attitude of, “what you see is what you get.” And, often this is not the case. While some upgrades and options might come with the house, be sure to ask what is and what isn’t included.
- Not conducting a home inspection of your own. There is a big difference in passing a building inspection and passing a home inspection. The former just checks to ensure the house complies with building codes and does not test or inspect components and systems, like the latter, a home inspector does.
- Buying a new home built on a dump lot. This is perhaps one of the worse scenarios. When a new community is developed, one or more lots will serve as a “dump lot.” This is where at least some of the waste and debris, like trees, are buried. Although builders do make an attempt to firm it up, these lots can settle, causing foundation issues.
If you are considering buying or selling a home in Orlando, contact us for the latest market information. We’ll also provide you with the right advice about the local real estate market so you make the best decisions.