Tag Archives: home upgrades

Five Secrets to Buying a New Home

5 Nov

Knowing what questions to ask, how to negotiate & what to expect can reduce costs and make buying a new home an enjoyable experience. Here’s a few of my top tips for buying new construction and hope it helps.

1.  Purchasing a new home within 9o days of completion can be a home run & can typically be bought for a much better price than the same home built from the ground up…..and especially so if complete. Builder homes are financed with interim construction loans and many times they have a limit from their bank on the amount of homes they can build at one time. So to start more homes & remove this home from the books they are willing to give lucrative discounts & incentives on a “spec home.”

2  At the point of offer, request that the builder pay the owner’s title policy.  A title policy will most likely be required by  your lender and will protect you against any claims made against the home prior to ownership such as a roofer not being paid who will seek a lien against the new owner.  In Texas and on a $350,000 home this will save you about $2178 in closing costs.

3.  Know the difference in what’s included in the model and what comes with your new home.  Builder’s models have all the bells & whistles from custom finishes, outdoor living areas and appliances….and they look wonderful. Exactly what is included in your new home is something that needs to be discussed in detail and included in the builder’s contract.  Also, if you are planning on including many upgrades is it more cost-effective to pay for these with the builder, or do these post-completion?  Builders may charge up to $14 a SF & more for handscraped hardwood floors which can be done through local vendors for about $8 a SF.  Don’t be the buyer who goes for all the builder upgrades and then can’t sell their home when they get the transfer call to Chicago. Here in the Frisco, McKinney, Plano and Allen areas….many builders will include a nice and sufficient upgrade package to get started with.

4. Do a “third party” inspection.  I hear you as you’re saying….”But Jeff, it’s a new home.” I know, but builders make mistakes too and why not catch it along the way, or at least upon completion to ensure peace of mind when you move in.  I sold a new home in Plano years ago and when I arrived with my client for inspections, we saw an indoor fountain as water was cascading from upstairs down the shelves of the pantry.  The plumber had forgotten to connect the overflow drain to the tub and they did take care of it, but glad we caught it ahead of time.  I recommend my clients have an inspector complete a 4-stage inspection….at foundation pour, at framing, at sheetrock and then a final to ensure they protect their investment & any issues are taken care of by the builder before closing.

5.  Hire a solid and experienced Realtor who understands all the dynamics of negotiating and can guide you through the new home purchase process.  I could have easily titled this blog….”67 secrets to buying a new home,” but it’s probably too long now.  As a practice, a professional Realtor will tour the new communities in the area such as Richwoods and Lawler Park in Frisco and know what’s happening there and how to match your needs. Also, I know many wonderful and hard-working builder representatives, but guess who they work for……the builder.  You need representation on your side and 95% of builders in the D/FW area have Realtor’s commissions built into their marketing budgets and pricing, so why would you go it solo. A great Realtor can save you thousands of dollars, relieve a lot of stress and ensure you buy a home which will be a strong financial asset and easily marketable in the future.

Thank you for reading and contact me anytime with questions, or advice regarding the exciting adventure of buying a new home.

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