Old Or New: Which Home Is Right For You?

When you're in the market for a new home, you have a few choices for what type of home you can look for. You can look for an older home in an established neighborhood, a historic home in the the oldest areas of the city, or a new build home in a developing suburb or subdivision. Each has its advantages. Here are some things to consider when making the choice of which home is right for your needs and your budget. 

New Homes

New homes are often the most appealing to prospective buyers. They often offer:

  1. extensive home warranties on expensive repairs. Roofs, basements, windows, appliances, and even flooring may be fully warrantied for several years, which can give a buyer peace of mind. 
  2. the ability to customize finishes. If you buy your home during or before construction begins, you can choose cabinet colors, flooring type, and countertop styles. 
  3. planned neighborhoods. There may be parks and schools close by because these neighborhoods have been planned with the community in mind.

Some downsides to newly built homes include the lack of established trees. Sometimes a developing neighborhood can take a few years to complete, so there's construction noise and less polish for a time. These neighborhoods can be further away from downtown, which is a highlight for some and a downside for others. 

Established Homes

Established homes are these that only a decade or two old, so they still have many of the same convenient floor plans, updated kitchens, and convenient attached garages as new homes. However, they are located in areas that are finished developing. The upside is that you have neighbors who have owned homes for a while, so you see the general feeling of the neighborhood. Trees are bigger; gardens are flourishing.

However, even though these homes may only be 20 or 30 years old, their finishings can be dated, and if you want a modern home, you'll have to factor in the cost of repairs and upgrades. These homes are also approaching the time of needing new roofs, HVAC repairs, or replacement windows and siding. 

Historic Homes

Nothing says charm like the craftsmanship and architecture of an old house. They have unique styling, beautiful woodwork, and lovely windows. These homes are for those who truly enjoy historic houses, including the extra maintenance that comes with them. You'll need a large repair fund, and if the home has not been updated, a sizable savings account for renovations to bathrooms, kitchens, plumbing, and electrical systems.