Most first-time homebuyers wouldn’t even consider buying a new home but in today’s housing market and the era of low mortgage rates, it is more attainable than ever before. If you haven’t considered buying a new home, we want you to start.
We asked our New Home Specialists for answers to common questions they receive about buying or building a new home compared to purchasing a resale home from not only first-time homebuyers but seasoned buyers as well. Here are their responses and helpful advice if you’re looking to buy or build a new home.
The big question, what do first time homebuyers need to know about buying a new home versus a resale home?
Jon: It’s not some crazy pipe dream, it’s actually affordable. Depending on the loan type and mortgage amount, you could get in for as little as $10K down.
Scott: Everything in the home will be brand new. If you build a new home, you will get to decide on everything that goes into the home. Personalize it to your specific needs and wants.
Jenny: With a new home you know exactly what you are getting whereas with a resale you never know what the previous owner may have neglected to disclose.
What are the advantages of buying a new home over a “used” home?
Jon: Warranties on big ticket items and long-term coverage on things like siding, shingles and windows. Plus, the warranty is free as opposed to an outside warranty that you pay for.
Scott: With a new home, there aren’t any hiding surprises that may cost you of thousands of dollars. Plus, a one-year warranty provides quite a bit of peace of mind.
Jenny: There are so many! Our one-year builder warranty, you’re the first person to enjoy your home, your home will be more energy efficient, there are more customizable options depending upon the stage in which you are buying and you won’t ever have to make major renovations.
What is the main question you get asked by customers?
All three of our New Home Specialists commented that questions centered around the process of buying or building a new home are what they get asked by both first-time and seasoned homebuyers. If you want to learn more about the process, we’ve got you covered! Check out our Pathway to Homeownership references that provides information regarding the process and what to expect every step of the way. We also have a list of our frequently asked questions and their answers here.
And as a quick, easy answer to the process questions: it is much simpler than you think. If you’re buying or building in one of our communities, the lending process is the same as for any other single-family home, you’ll just need to tell your lender that you’re buying or building a new home and they can help you navigate it from there.
From the process on our end, that’s what our New Home Specialists and knowledgeable team are here for – to help you navigate the process and be informed from start to finish. Don’t let the idea of “new” intimidate you. You’ll be saving yourself the headaches that come with buying a resale home.
Do you recommend that first-time homebuyers build a home or buy one of our Designer homes?
Jon: It’s all time dependent.
Scott: It all depends on the customer. Our designer homes are so well decorated and have neutral color palettes that its very easy to just move-in. The easiest way is to purchase a Designer home. You can move in within 30-45 day and not have to make any difficult decisions.
Jenny: Both, depending upon your timeline and financial investment.
What advice would you give to those wanting to buy a new home?
Jon: Think about your lifestyle, what works and doesn’t with your current living situation. Make a note of it and consider what you want in a new home so that you know what you’re looking for.
Scott: Make a budget and stick with it. Do your homework. Ask questions (there are no dumb questions). Be comfortable with the salesperson or builder you are dealing with. Don’t allow someone’s prior poor experience to influence your decision on buying or building a new home. Building a new home is a great experience and brings a tremendous amount of self-accomplishment. Ask questions to the salesperson or builder and make sure they answer your questions to your satisfaction.
What can a first-time homebuyer expect when buying a new home?
Jon: With us, a helping hand every step of the way.
Scott: A lot of second guessing. Did I make the right decision? Is the home too much for me? Did I get in over my head? These are all common concerns but if you do your due diligence prior to starting the process of buying/building a new home most of your concerns will be minimal. Owning a brand-new home is an awesome experience. There is a great amount of pride that comes with being the first person to ever live in a home. Not everyone gets the opportunity to own a brand-new home.
What steps should a first-time homebuyer take to purchase a new home?
Jon: Get preapproved, then start considering what you want in a home. Some people get grand ideas about what they want but can’t afford it, and don’t want to compromise. If you’re preapproved first, you’ll know what you can afford and might even be surprised that you can get more than expected.
Scott: Understand how much you can afford to spend on a mortgage monthly. Determine your current budget and how it will change after purchasing a new home. Then make a budget that completely identifies all expenses associated with owning a home, along with the items you will need to purchase for your new home. Figure out where you want to be and stick to your budget! A lender may qualify you for more than you may be comfortable with and this can jeopardize your financial future. Understand your budget and stay within your comfort zone, even if they are offering to approve you for more. If you choose to build, selecting what goes into a new build can add up quickly and become overwhelming. Its easy to overspend and stretch your budget. Avoid overspending and stick to your budget.
Jenny: Your very first step should be determining if you are financially ready. Check out the resources here on our website to help you!
Any other helpful information you want to share?
Jon: Don’t be chained to square footage. Small houses can feel plenty big with the right floor plan and big houses can even feel small with the wrong layout. Instead, consider the design you’re wanting, how the rooms layout (split bedroom or traditional), the number of levels, living rooms and family spaces, etc. and find a setup that works rather than a square footage number.
Jenny: We understand that purchasing a new home is a big decision. We are happy to help out along the way and excited for you to enjoy your new home just as much as you are.
About our New Home Specialists
Scott is our New Home Specialist in Clear Creek and for Southern Ridge. When he was young, he moved from South Vietnam with his family to Atchison, Kansas where he grew up and attended college in Dodge City, Kansas at Saint Mary of the Plains College. With over 11 years of experience as a realtor, he is a wealth of knowledge and expertise. You’ll notice quickly that Scott knows no stranger and makes friends of everyone he meets. He listens to his customers and works hard to ensure that their expectations are met, if not exceeded.
Jenny is our New Home Specialist in Village Estates and for Buena Vista. A Wichita-native, Jenny is a graduate of Wichita State University. Her diligence, dedication and tenacity are evident as she works to ensure customer satisfaction and care throughout every step of the homebuying process. You’ll appreciate Jenny’s warm personality, transparency and willingness to communicate throughout the homebuying journey.
UPDATE: While Jon is no longer with the company, he always provided valuable insight and knowledge into the homebuying process.
Our New Home Specialists provide a customer-focused, no-pressure experience centered around integrity, teamwork and continuous improvement. They are all committed to providing a great homebuying journey and exceeding your expectations.
We hope this has helped provide some answers to your questions about buying a new home versus a resale home. If you have any questions at all, feel free to contact us or any of the New Home Specialists.