When buying a new construction home it is important for you to have a professional who represents your best interest in your corner and not someone strictly there to protect the builder’s bottom line. Using a Realtor doesn’t cost you anything and a knowledgeable Realtor can help you avoid costly mistakes.
Buying A New Construction Home
Buying a new construction home can be one of the most exciting times of your life (and it should be, think how much you’re spending!) and not something you want to “get wrong.” It’s pretty easy to get sucked into that “new home smell,” but before you tempt yourself, HOLD ON! Read this article for helpful tips BEFORE visiting those model homes for the FIRST time.
Contact me; I have helped over 50 buyers in the last 2 years buy new construction homes, and I’d love to help you!
What about all these Ma & Pa builders?
If you’ve driven around Marion County lately, you’ve probably noticed there seems to be a new home being built on almost every street! The question becomes, who’s building them? We of course recognize the names of some of the bigger long-standing buildings in the area but what about some of these smaller builders that aren’t from the area, is it safe to buy from them?
This is becoming more and more of a great question as more home builders arrive to our area. There seems to be 2 main methodologies that these builders are operating with (and let’s be clear, they both revolve around profit!):
- Some builders have money (or investors with money), build homes and then are either a licensed real estate agent who lists the home or their spouse is a licensed agent who lists the home. Either way though, you’re typically dealing in some aspect with the builder directly or slightly indirectly.
- Investors with money are hiring builders to build homes and then listing that home with a real estate agent. In this model, you’re not dealing with the builder directly or indirectly, you’re buying the home from the investor.
There are variations on each of the above models that I see but primarily most of these ma and pa type operations fall into one of the two above scenarios.
So what can go wrong?
In either methodology we’d like to know how long they’ve been in the area and what is the likelihood of them being around in a few months if something does go wrong and we need assistance. In methodology 1, what type of warranty are they offering us and is it a 3rd party warranty so even if they close up shop or move to another town can we get that warranty honored? I recently dealt with a builder operating using methodology 1 who didn’t want to provide any sort of a long term home warranty nor offer any financial protection to my buyer.
In methodology 2, the problem here is that the investor wants you as the buyer to deal directly with the builder if a problem arises (after all they just want to make money) and you as the buyer never hired the builder so why should they bother to fix problems for you? I’ve seen where some investors are going as far as asking for the contract to not have any money in it for repairs and not have any time in it for inspections, if a problem arises they just want you to file a claim with the builders warranty department.
No matter which methodology the ma and pa builder is using, it’s important to be educated about the process and be protected by the contract. We have some great people building homes in Marion County with a lot of great value, ask questions up front and understand how the warranty works.