Questions to ask yourself about buying new construction

As the founder of a brokerage that sells new homes and condos on behalf of builders, I see the merits of buying new construction daily. If you think I am biased, you’re right – I am. But rather than spewing out a bunch of boring facts about why you should buy new, ask yourself the following questions and decide for yourself.

Are you concerned about the environment? Virtually no older home or condo will offer the same standard of efficiency, as only newly built residences are required to meet the latest national building code standards for energy efficiency and consumption.

Do you want a “turn-key” move-in experience? Buying new means you’ve selected all your favourite colours, finishes and fixtures in advance of construction. When you open the door on move-in day, your home should be in brand-new, ready-to-live-in condition. There should be no need to spend time or money on home improvements, except for decorating – that’s the fun part!

Do you like the idea of having a home warranty? Coverage for new homes and condos is done by province. Standard home warranties vary, but they generally protect you against issues such as delayed closings, defects in construction including basement foundations and structural issues, and more. Yes, many older homes were built to last, with incredible workmanship and sturdy materials, but new homes take advantage of the latest advances in materials, technology and construction standards, and products are covered by a manufacturer’s guarantee.

Do you like the idea of choosing the lot and view? If so, then when a new community or phase is released, try to get in to buy as early as possible, to pick your preferred view and the floor you want to be on in the case of a condo. When buying lowrise, many people have a preference as to whether their home catches more of the morning or afternoon sun, so buying new is your opportunity to decide. There is a site plan at the builder’s sales office to review as part of your selection process. This is a distinct advantage that you do not have in the resale home market.

Do you want a competitive advantage in the real estate market? Inventory in the resale market has dwindled considerably in many areas over the last few years. New construction can be a great alternative, as you’ll see from the selection in this magazine. Keep in mind, you’re looking at a waiting period of up to 18 months to build a new home, and up to four years or more in the case of a condominium. You’ll need a place to live during construction. Make sure it’s flexible, as occupancy dates can change. That longer waiting period means your down payment structure will be spread out, allowing you more time to save up for a larger down payment. There are lots of advantages, but I can’t fit them all into this space!

What does buying from a trusted builder mean for Canadians? It’s an investment in our economy and our future.

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