Sales Price- (I call this a tie.) New construction comes with, on average, a 10%-15% higher price tag, but you may save when you consider location. In most parts of the country the prime locations are already gone. A spacious existing home may look cramped with the current owner's things, whereas a builder can use lots of tricks to make a space seem larger, such as putting smaller beds when staging and removing interior doors. Your best bet is to crunch the numbers and find out how much space you are working with in either home.
Speed of Transaction- (Winner- Existing) Since most builders are selling lots based off of model homes, once you agree to buy, then the construction begins. The upside is that there is an opportunity to customize, but it will probably keep you waiting around six to nine months. If you are listing your current home, waiting can cause the issue of getting stuck covering two mortgages, so an existing home purchase may be right for you. In this case you should ask an agent how fast homes in your area are selling and discuss marketing strategies to help your home sell quickly.
Cost of Ownership- (Winner- New) New homes come with lower utility bills thanks to the call for more insulation and tighter sealing. New construction is generally 30%-40% more efficient than existing homes.
Near-Term Appreciation- (Winner-Existing) Homeowners that don't mind making improvements can see a higher short term appreciation in value whereas new homes leave little room for improvement and normally sell for the same price as similar homes around them.
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