Tips To Follow When Buying New Construction Real Estate

By: Eric Bramlett

New home communities offer beautiful homes, open-floor plans, new appliances, and much more. Plus, new homes often offer easy purchasing through an on-site sales agent. The problem is that they can also tally up to significant losses. To buy your new construction home the smart way, follow these tips:

1) Use a Realtor Who Has New Home Sales Experience
New homebuilders will sometimes put pressure on you to use an on-site agent plus a pre-approved lender, insurer and title company. It's a mistake not to get your own realtor. A realtor can protect your interests and can ensure that all costs and interest rates are within industry standards. Realtors with new home experience know the homebuilder community and this can ensure that homebuilders are very cooperative - after all, they don't want to tarnish their reputation.

2) Don't Sign ANYTHING Until You've Negotiated Every Detail
Always assume that nothing is agreed upon until it is in writing. Once it's in writing, don't assume that it can be changed or negotiated. Don't fall for the "write up the contract so that no one else can get your house" ploy. Instead, make sure that the contract you sign has everything you negotiated in writing before you sign.

3) GET A HOME INSPECTION!!!
Many people assume that home inspections are for older homes that may have asbestos, structural problems, and other liabilities. This is not true! While many new constructions come with full warranties, those warranties usually only last 12 months and many problems surface only after that first year. An independent, professional inspector can help you avoid very costly repairs a few years down the line.

4) Don't Use Their Lender
Many builders who build entire communities are now publicly traded corporations. These companies make a lot of money by financing - not just building and selling - homes. As a result, many builders will offer you enormous incentives or pressure you to use their lenders. The problem is that the builder's lender will usually have higher interest rates and higher closing costs than a traditional lender. In most cases, you can have the stipulations removed so that you can choose your own lender and enjoy some incentives. After all, the builder will not make any money if you refuse to buy a home. If a builder insists that you use their lender, walk away and find another builder. It makes no sense to pay many thousands of dollars extra.

5) Research the Builder
Most builders are responsible and take care to protect their built neighborhoods. Still, make sure that you research your builder. Specifically, make sure that your builder has a reputation for good quality homes. Make sure that the company limits investor purchases - these can result in rental properties that depreciate neighborhood value. Also, determine whether the builder will build equal or greater value homes in the surrounding area. If they do not, the new homes will instantly devalue.

6) Choose An Appraiser
Lenders require you have an appraisal anyway, so you may as well research a good appraiser yourself. Ask for a copy of the appraiser's findings as well - it can contain information that will give you better insight into what you are buying.

7) Research City Plans
New neighborhoods are often built on the outskirts of town, where land is available at a lower cost. Be sure to ask your realtor or do your own research into what the city has in mind for the area. Research roads, zoning, public transportation, parks, and schools - all will determine the future value of your new home.

New homes are very appealing to buyers. If they're appealing to you, be sure to hire professionals and do your research so that your new home remains a positive experience for years to come!

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