Buying a House vs. Building a House

June 17, 2021

To buy or to build? This question has plagued house hunters since the dawn of the real estate industry.

Buying a House vs. Building a House

To buy or to build? This question has plagued house hunters since the dawn of the real estate industry. Both options have attractive advantages and certain downfalls. 

The great thing about moving to a place like the Western Slope of Colorado is that both buying and building are within reach. You just have to evaluate the pros and cons of each and decide which pros outweigh the cons in your specific situation. 

Prior to becoming a real estate broker, I spent many years as a contractor and home developer so I know well what both processes look like. Here’s my take on buying your house versus building your house. 

    • Buying Your House

      You see a house on the market. It fits your budget and checks most of the wants off of your list. You find a knowledgeable real estate agent, and you decide to purchase it. Maybe this is the best option for you. Let’s take a look:

      Pros of Buying Your House

          • You can move into your new house shortly after your offer gets accepted. Plus, there are plenty of people and websites to help you find the right property.
          • You have fewer choices to make. When you buy a house, you’ll make a wishlist, and you might find a property that meets most or all of the criteria.
          • If your new house is missing any of the features on that wishlist, it’s usually pretty easy to make changes and updates like new paint, flooring, or cabinets. 
          • Depending on the size and features you want in your new home, buying an existing house could save you a substantial amount of time and money.
      1. Cons of Buying Your House
          • You might have to settle for what’s available, and doing so might involve a lot of compromises.
          • The developer or original owner already made most of the design and layout choices for you. While you can change some, you’re stuck with others. 
          • The home may have maintenance issues or need major updates to electrical wiring, plumbing, roofing, etc. 
building a house.jpeg
    • Building Your House

      You have very specific needs and tastes, and you know that none of the homes available in your local market will fit the bill. Now, it’s time to consider finding land or property with a tear-down to build the house of your dreams. Here’s what you need to consider:

      Pros of Building Your House

          • You can usually get a plot of land for a very affordable price.
          • If your land has enough acreage, you can choose the location of your house. You can also orient the house to make sure you have a great view. 
          • Building a home allows you to completely customize the layout and design to fit your needs. You have control over the square footage, beds, baths, etc.
          • Since you’re there to observe the home’s completion from the ground up, you also have quality control. If you don’t like a certain feature, you have the power to change it. 

      Cons of Building Your Home

          • It takes a lot of time to find suitable land, find contractors and other home building professionals, design the home, get it built and in moving condition. Don’t build if you need something right away. 
          • You have to make many choices and compromises along the way. Say the tile that you wanted for your bathroom is too expensive or the countertop is out of stock. You may realize that the costs of compromises start to add up. Unlike a preexisting home, when you build, you can’t really settle for what’s already there.
          • You have to deal with contractors - finding the right one, keeping the work within your budget, and ensuring that they complete the job in a timely manner. 
          • Building may - and usually does - cost more. If you’re interested in building your own home, it’s probably because you have size and feature specifications that you couldn’t find on the market. Creating your perfect home comes at a price. 

      What’s Right For Me?

      Based on the pros and cons above, maybe you’ve decided whether buying a home or building a home is right for you. If not, it’s completely okay to keep your options open. Find a real estate agent in your area who has experience doing both so they can help you find houses and land, and connect you with contracting professionals. 

      Of course, if you’re in Western Colorado, I’m happy to walk you through both processes.

      Read original article on