Building Could be your House Hunting Solution
Depending on buyers’ lists of things they “must have” in their next home and the time frame for how soon they want to move, their REALTOR® may suggest looking at new home construction options. Sometimes building your home is the easiest way to get exactly what you want and in a recovering market, an excellent time to secure yourself some of the most skilled builders, eager to start their next project.
Your agent can show you listings of what are called “to-be-built” homes that typically require working with a home builder who owns the parcel or parcels of land being developed. There may also be land for sale that fits the desires of where you want your new home to be. If you choose to buy unclaimed land, you would then find your own builder. Typically you can ask your agent for a list of recommended builders in the area and then meet with each to decide which one best fits your needs and desires for the home.
The price of new construction options can range to fit a variety of budgets and can include the options from building an economical home, up to the best of the best in luxury homes. If you find a home to be built that as part of a development of new homes, there is often already a plan in place that dictates the styles and square footage of the homes to be built. These plans and the general cost of the home are what the builder will probably adhere to. In other words, a luxury home development will probably not allow a buyer who wants to build a small, basic home.
What matters when you build?
- Location and personal style: When you build you need to decide on where; A to-be built home in a developing neighborhood or land for sale that fits your needs. You will also need to choose the style of home and square footage of the house that fits your needs.
- What will this all cost?: Most builders will have a plan of what is to be built on any given lot within a development. The lot you are looking at may already have plans for a 2,000 square foot colonial to be offered at $269,900 with a list of the basics that are included. The builder gives the buyer a list of what is standard and then the buyer may modify the plans, within reason, to best fit what they want in a home. This may include adding a great room (for additional money of course) or it might be scaling it down to 1,500 square feet of space, to cut the budget. It might be that you want more insulation than what comes standard in the build package or you want French doors instead of a picture window. This is where you narrow down exactly what you are looking for and learn what the builder is willing to do, and what it will cost you or save you.
- Extra cost: Typically the builder has listed the to-be-built at a certain price range based upon the list of what materials come standard with the construction package. This may mean it calls for Formica counter tops, while you want granite. This is where your personal choices can start to add up. Choose wisely and pay close attention to the builder’s final quote that includes any and all upgrades. Builders tend to start low, and allow you to upgrade for extra cost.
- Financing new construction: Like most loans today, financing a home to be built requires full documentation of your earnings, credit status, and the final design plans of the home and building costs. In some instances a buyer might be required to revise the original building plans in order to get approval for the loan.
- Breaking ground: You will always remember it. The start of construction of your new home is an amazing period of time where, with each passing week, you see your dreams being brought to reality. If you want to stay on budget and on track for your move-in date, keep changes in design or product choices to a minimum. Know that it may require a bit more time and patience, but owning a home that you helped plan is very rewarding.