10 Reasons Why Buying a New Home Makes More Sense Than Renovating
Today’s do-it-yourself and home renovation television programs like “DIY SOS” and “Fixer Upper” have glamorized the concept of remodeling projects. These programs make renovating look fun and practically effortless. They pick out new paint, flooring, and fixtures, and the hosts proudly knock down walls with huge sledgehammers. Literally, everyone is smiling and laughing until the camera-ready home is revealed amid astonished gasps and high fives. But the truth is, these are far from your typical home renovation projects.
There are countless reasons why you may prefer a new versus older home that requires remodeling. Maybe you have specific must-haves in mind that simply aren’t an option. That is unless it’s at a huge expense that will stretch your budget and sanity. These large-scale renovations can include an open concept living, dining and kitchen area with vaulted ceilings, new bathrooms and plumbing, and seamless indoor-outdoor spaces.
But even typical renovations like installing new floors, tearing down an existing wall, and replacing kitchen countertops and cabinets are filled with unexpected expenses and stresses. When it comes to renovations of any scale, many of the same issues are found no matter what the project size.
DIY: The Untold Story
More homeowners are choosing to buy new over remodeling their existing homes nowadays. Financial motivations often play the biggest role. But many tell me that the emotional toll also played a part in their decision-making process based on friends and family members who decided to remodel themselves – and have the battle scars to prove it.
Believe me; I’ve also heard some real horror stories over the years of DIY renovations gone wrong. Whatever your final decision is, it’s important to be fully informed before moving forward. Then you’ll be able to make the best choice for you and your family.
Top 10 most common reasons why buying a new home may be a better decision than renovating your existing home:
- How many people have $130K on-hand to invest in their homes? – Few homeowners are sitting on $130K cash to put into repairs. You can take advantage of financing instead and get your dream home all at once. And the hidden truth is that today’s homebuyers are often purchasing their dream homes with half the cash they would spend on repairs to their existing home.
- Home renovation costs are unpredictable (at best) – Even if you have a strict and detailed budget, the reality is that home renovations can be widely unpredictable. What is intended to be an affordable renovation project can quickly soar far beyond your budget with financial ticking time bombs like mold, termites, and structural issues?
- Kitchen and bathroom renovations can be pricey and tricky – Depending upon your choice of materials, kitchen and bathroom upgrades can easily reach $25,000 or more. But the cost of remodeling alone is definitely not the main source of stress. These renovations can also become tremendously complicated. The result of the need to install proper wiring and update plumbing to current building codes can significantly add to the complexity and cost of renovations.
- Investing in renovations never guarantees a return – It’s important to consider, if you invest the money, whether or not other people will value your home renovations the same way. This is especially true for an aging neighborhood or community. You may actually over-improve your home and throw money down the drain. Although you can increase the value of your home by adding all the bells and whistles, buyers never want to purchase a home that will cost them more than the average home in the same neighborhood.
- Working with contractors is amazing – said nobody, ever – No one wants to manage a contractor with all the headaches, time, and aggravation. The alternative is doing the work yourself. But that can quickly become stressful – not to mention dangerous. Instead, you can let a builder oversee the entire process when you purchase a new home.
- Peace of mind – and getting what you want – is priceless – A new single-family home can come with one-year materials and a workmanship warranty. And, at the same time, you are getting exactly what you want.
- Energy-efficiency can cost an arm, leg, and a carbon footprint – Energy-efficient features come with high price tags. If you’re interested in remodeling an old home, you will be hard-pressed to find one built 10 to 20 years ago that offers energy-efficient features. However, today, they are offered in most new homes. And the related financial savings, not to mention the positive contributions they make to the environment, can really add up.
- Living in a construction zone takes patience – During a renovation, most homeowners are living in far less than ideal circumstances. The ongoing presence of contractors and their noisy power tools can become truly maddening. Do you have the patience to deal with this for months on end? And the costs will add up fast if you decide to stay in a hotel to avoid your own personal construction zone.
- There’s nothing better than a 100% move-in ready home – A brand-new, move-in ready home gives you the distinct advantage of buying a home that offers everything on your wish list. Meeting building codes and inspection guidelines will also be something you never have to worry about. And, after you move in, you won’t even have to think about making repairs any time soon with a new home.
- A fresh start in a resort-style community – From better schools to a bigger backyard and new neighbors, a completely fresh start is obviously something that’s not provided when you renovate your existing home. Not to mention, if you choose to live in a new master-planned community, you’ll have the latest in top-of-the-line resort-style amenities like a sparkling swimming pool, cutting-edge fitness center, tennis courts, playgrounds and more.
Ultimately, new homes offer a wide range of must-have upgrades that include open concept floor plans, chef-inspired kitchens, granite counter-tops, vaulted ceilings, flowing master bedrooms with en-suite baths, and the absolute best in resort-style amenities.
And, if you make the decision to buy new versus renovate, you’ll be able to enjoy your new home right away – for the long-term. There will be no costly and surprising home repairs, lower maintenance and operation costs, and a warranty that will all make your new home stress free.
That means you can kick back, relax, grab some popcorn, and watch your favorite DIY and home renovation programs from the comfort of your new living room!
About the Author: Alexander Akel is the founder and president of Akel Homes, a fully integrated private residential development firm in South Florida. A second-generation developer, he has a decades-long proven track record of success. Akel Homes’ master-planned, resort-style Villamar Toscana Isles community offers stunning, move-in ready new homes in Palm Beach County.