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Newly Built vs Previously Owned Homes: The Pros and Cons

Posted on Dec 8, 2020 in Blog

Are you in the market for a new home? Are you torn between deciding on a newly constructed home or a previously owned (resale) property? While both options have their advantages (and disadvantages), there is no right or wrong choice. Ultimately the answer depends on your unique new home wants and needs. 

Here are a few pros and cons to consider when trying to determine whether a new construction or previously owned home is right for you:

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Newly Built Homes: The Pros 

1. New Home Warranty 

Every new home build in Alberta must come with a mandatory 1-2-5-10 home warranty, which includes:

  • 1 year – Materials and Labour Coverage
  • 2 years – Mechanical Systems Coverage
  • 5 years – Building Envelope Coverage
  • 10 years -Structural Defect Coverage

With a brand-new home, you’ll have peace of mind knowing any warrantable repairs will be taken care of by your new home builder at no additional cost to you.

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2. Customization 

With a resale home, what you see is what you get (unless you’re planning to take on costly renovation projects). With a new construction home, however, you have the option to pick, choose and customize every nook and cranny – ultimately allowing you to own a home built explicitly to your needs and tastes. 

3. Energy Efficiency and Modern Conveniences 

New home builds = new home everything. This includes the latest in energy-efficient systems and appliances (saving you a ton of money on your utility bills) as well as modern layout options and features (i.e. an open concept floor plan, spa-like ensuite, new appliances, walk-thru pantry and more). 

And, don’t forget, should any warrantable defect occur, these items will be covered by the builder’s warranty. 

Bonus: Did we mention that a reputable new home builder will have various Edmonton neighbourhoods (and surrounding areas) to pick from, including infill communities)? 

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Newly Built Homes: The Cons  

1. Potentially Longer Wait Times 

Of course, building your dream home from scratch takes time. From choosing the right builder and purchasing your home to making design choices and waiting for the home to be built, the entire process, from start to finish, can take several months.

Keep in mind, a good builder will do their best to complete your home as quickly and professionally as possible within their promised time frame. They will also let you know how your new home is progressing every step of the way. 

(Btw If you don’t have time to wait, you always have the option to purchase a brand-new quick possession home,).

2. Decisions, Decisions 

One of the unique benefits of working with a reputable Edmonton custom builder is having the ability to select every floorplan, fit and finish. That being said, we understand the top to bottom decision process isn’t for everyone (in fact, we know some people find it downright overwhelming). 

The good news is, by opting for a new construction home, you can make as little or as many decisions you want. For instance, you can opt to design your home from the ground up, choose a move-in ready property (already outfitted with the latest features and amenities), or something in between (a new home currently under construction awaiting one or two of your personal touches). 

3. New Neighbourhoods 

Unless you choose to build a new infill home in an established area, chances are, some building may still be going on. While that’s not to say you’ll be living in a construction zone, there may be other homes currently being built in your neighbourhood – as well as the development of fresh new community amenities (i.e. a school, grocery store or recreation centre). 

While living in a developing neighbourhood may not sound as appealing as that “mature community with the tree-lined streets”, keep in mind that as new homes and amenities go up, so too will your property value. 

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Previously Owned Homes: The Pros 

1. Move-In Ready 

Other than the mandatory closing period (typically around 30 days), previously owned homes are 100% move-in ready. This means you can take possession right away, without waiting for construction to be completed. 

2. Old Neighbourhood Charm 

Generally speaking, the older the resale home, the older the surrounding neighbourhood. Depending on the community, you may be able to look forward to a mature neighbourhood, streets lined with thriving trees, fully finished landscaping, etc. 

3. Ultra-Established Amenities 

Because the neighbourhood is older, it’s likely to have more established amenities than a newer community still under development. For instance, the area may already feature a local school and plenty of transit options (vs. a new community where many of these conveniences are still in the works).  

Previously Owned Homes: The Cons 

1. Renovations 

Older resale homes are just that. Older. They’re far more likely to come equipped with outdated floor plans and features that require upgrades. As a result, you may be forced to invest a ton of time, money (and potentially frustration) into renovations to get the home you truly want. 

2. More Maintenance

Just as a previously owned home may require renovations, it may also need more maintenance. Items such as roofing, siding or windows will (likely) need to be replaced sooner rather than later. Ageing systems (hot water tank, furnace, plumbing, electrical and HVAC) may need to be repaired or updated, older basements are prone to mould and mildew from water ingress, etc. 

3. (Often) More Expensive 

The cost of maintenance, renovations and repairs aside, a resale home’s location can also result in a higher price tag. Older/character homes in popular mature neighbourhoods (i.e. near the River Valley and/or closer to downtown) tend to be more expensive due to their established status and proximity to nearby amenities. 

Are you thinking about buying or building a new home in Edmonton or the surrounding area? Get in touch with us today to learn more about the San Rufo Difference! You can also have the latest new home info delivered directly to your inbox by subscribing to our newsletter below!

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