Are you envisioning yourself in that outdated, yet cozy, wood-burning fireplaced living room? Or do you have your heart set on that new master bedroom suite with the walk-in closet and master bath with soaking tub and his and hers sinks? Are we looking for old, or new?
Your final decision may boil down to any number of factors- personal preference, budget, location, etc. – so here are some things to keep in mind when you’re trying to decide whether an old house or a new house is right for you:
#1: Upfront costs: How much house can you afford?
New may be nice, but you are certainly going to pay for it! According to Realtor.com you can expect to pay approximately 23% more for a new home versus buying an existing home. That’s a sizable price hike! However, all that money you save buying an old home may not remain in your pocket for very long. Older homes generally require at least a few immediate upgrades and often cost more to heat and cool.
Are you a weekend warrior? Older homes come with the inevitable need for repairs, replacements, and general upkeep- which could require a lot of time, energy, and money. A home inspection can help provide insight into the homes recommended ongoing maintenance items, as well as identify and items that require immediate attention. It’s not unusual for homeowners to spend lots of weekends at the hardware store gathering supplies to knock some items off of their endless lists of things to be done.
On the other hand, if you’re seeking a life with fewer hassles, or just don’t want to spend all of your free cash on emergency repairs and upkeep expenses, a new home may be worth serious consideration. New homes should be mostly worry-free for at least the first several years because all of the ‘big-ticket’ items, like the HVAC system, roof, and electrical, are all brand new.
*Of course buying brand-new is not always possible, so if you do go ahead and purchase an aging home it’s especially important to have a thorough home inspection so that you can understand the condition of the major systems (plumbing, electrical, heating, etc.).
Curb appeal matters a lot when it comes to choosing a home and both old and new homes have their own distinct character (or lack thereof). Older homes often feel more welcoming and charming. With pocket doors, crawl spaces and architectural detail, sometimes older is better.
Newer homes tend to have the latest trends like kitchen islands, textured tile, and walk-in showers. They are also commonly built with an open-concept, creating much larger living spaces.
So, new home or old home? Both have their own appeal, so really, it comes down to what is the best fit for you and your everyday life.