The Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corporation released data yesterday that new housing starts in the GTA are up 19 per cent in April over March,
This new piece of data got me thinking about the advantages and disadvantages of buying a new home versus a resale home in the Mississauga real estate market.
I am frequently asked to compare the two. Of course, one of the primary advantages of buying a new home is that you can frequently have some say in how the home is decorated, i.e. you can choose paint colors, finishes, kitchen cabinetry, etc. Other features like media rooms, extra-large closets and extra-large bathrooms and tubs are also more attainable at the time of construction. Another important advantage is the fact that new homes are being constructed with incredible energy efficiency. They use new building materials such as glazed Energy Star windows, thicker insulation and other technology that will lower future energy costs for the owner
On the other hand, the best thing about buying a resale home is that they are usually located within an established neighborhood and usually the lot sizes are bigger. (This can be also true with new homes, if the home is a tear-down.) This means that your landscaping is mature and your street already has a sense of roots and community. Schools and libraries have already been built. Mature trees, robust shrubs, gardens, rose bushes and perennially well-watered lawns are some of the rewards of an older home, while most new homes are apt to yield wee trees, fewer walkways and sparse vegetation. Secondly, resale homes usually give you more bang for your buck, in terms of investment. Existing homes are usually less expensive per square foot, in part because of escalating land costs in new subdivisions. When homeowners undertake thousands of dollars in home renovations and improvements, this doesn’t usually translate into the actual market value of the home increasing by that exact amount. In other words, buyers of such resale homes can obtain renovations at a fraction of the actual cost. (Builders usually have firm list prices that include the cost of every upgrade, etc. and their closing costs are usually higher.)
Now, for the disadvantages. Buying a new home means preparing yourself to live within an expansive construction site. Lawns will be mud pits. Driveways are gravel, etc. When you move into a resale home, the home is done and complete. When you move into a new home, it can be a project in the works, or at least the neighborhood can be. As well, additional expenses can be mounting, as you may need to purchase appliances, landscaping plants and trees, curtains, and more.
The disadvantage of buying a resale home is the fact that your home may need additional tender loving care. As a home gets on in age, certain systems such as heating, cooling, roofing, and/or windows need to be upgraded. Replacing such while residing in the home and working fulltime can require some patience and good scheduling.
If you have any questions about buying a new home versus an old home, please contact me at 905-502-1500.
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