New, used, or rent?
When considering your next home, do you rent, buy used (resale), or buy new? Each have their pros and cons, with some obvious, and some not so much. As far as buying new construction goes, there are three main positives you may want to consider:
- Lower maintenance costs / warranties
- More control over features / design
- Appreciation (especially pre-construction)
Lower maintenance costs / warranties
A new home is just that, new. Everything is new. New pipes, new wiring, new ducting, wood, concrete, insulation, paint, etc.. Even the lightbulbs are new. These are all things that degrade and deteriorate over time, and they are easy to overlook in a used home. An inspection will often catch the immediate / major items, but there is no escaping the fact that a used home is further along in it's deterioration process.
Not only are the materials new, so are the building codes. When you buy new, you know you are getting today's standards in safety and quality.
Additionally, new homes often come with builder warranties, in addition to manufacturer warranties for things like appliances. Try finding parts for a dishwasher made in 1983...
More control over features / design
The level of personalization offered varies by project and builder, but as a general rule, you will have far more room for personalization and upgrades when buying new than you would with resale.
The most common options are fixtures, materials, and appliances, but some projects even offer structural or facade options (aka "elevations").
Additionally, builders often run promotions on upgrades during slower months of the year, and it's possible to bundle your upgrades into the mortgage; which saves you having to take out a second loan for remodeling or using credit cards (which carry higher interest rates than a typical mortgage).
Appreciation (especially pre-construction)
Compared to cars, used vs new cars usually have a pretty dramatic price difference. New vs used homes don't tend to have the same degree of price difference; where location has a much larger influence. In-fact, pre-construction homes often dramatically appreciate in value by the time they are built and ready for move-in; especially in up-and-coming neighborhoods. Builders often discount pre-construction homes as well, compounding the effect. The effect is so strong, some builders have anti-flipping clauses in their contracts!