Buying a property is a significant investment, and it's important to weigh up the pros and cons of different types of properties. First time buyers can choose between new build properties and second-hand properties. Each type of property has its advantages and disadvantages, and the decision to buy one over the other will depend on individual circumstances and preferences.
In our customer discovery process, OnLadder found that many first-time buyers want the flexibility to buy second-hand properties or new build properties. However, while second-hand properties may have more “character” than a new build property, there are substantial benefits to purchasing a new build property that first time buyers should consider when purchasing a home:
- Quality and condition: One of the most significant benefits of buying a new build property is that it's brand new and in excellent condition. New build properties are constructed using modern building methods and materials, ensuring that they are built to a high standard and are more energy-efficient. This means that buyers can expect lower energy bills and fewer repair and maintenance costs in the early years of ownership.
- Customization: New build properties offer more customization options than second-hand properties. Buyers can often choose the fixtures, fittings, and finishes they prefer, such as kitchen and bathroom designs, flooring, and paint colours. This means that buyers can create a personalized home that suits their style and preferences.
- Warranty: New build properties come with a warranty, which covers the property for a set period after completion. This warranty offers peace of mind to buyers, knowing that any construction defects or problems that arise in the early years of ownership will be covered.
- Incentives and offers: Developers often offer incentives and special offers to buyers of new build properties, such as help with legal fees, stamp duty, or part-exchange deals. This can help to reduce the upfront costs of buying a property and make it a more attractive option for buyers.
- Lower maintenance costs: New build properties require less maintenance and repair than older properties. This is because the property is built to modern standards using new materials and technologies that are more durable and require less maintenance. This can result in lower maintenance and repair costs in the long term, which can be particularly beneficial for first-time buyers or those on a tight budget.
- Energy efficiency: New build properties are often more energy-efficient than older properties. This is because they are constructed using modern insulation and building materials, and are designed to meet the latest energy efficiency standards. This can result in lower energy bills and a more comfortable living environment for the occupants. Lower energy bills have become even more important in the current economic climate with household expenditures rising rapidly across the board. To not have to worry about energy bills rising, or even falling, is a huge plus for first time buyers when being assessed for affordability by mortgage lenders.
OnLadder advisor Douglas Cochrane adds, “Today’s second-hand properties are the new builds of yesteryear, so it makes sense to buy the latest model for all the benefits stated, especially as recently published research from the Home Builders Federation shows that a new home can be around £3,000 less to run than an equivalent older property.”
Buying a new build property offers many benefits that can be attractive to first time buyers. However, it's important to note that new build properties could also have some drawbacks, such as higher prices and longer wait times for completion. Ultimately, the decision to buy a new build property or a second-hand property will depend on individual circumstances, but new builds should be strongly considered for first-time buyers looking for high quality homes.