The vast majority of people buy an existing property as opposed to new construction when they look for a home. Buying a used home has both advantages and drawbacks, so prepare well and proceed confidently. It is always worth remembering that the second most common reason for homes going on the market is because the present owner regretted the decision, either the location is wrong, the size or floor plan is wrong or the maintenance became too much. Choose the right home, do your due diligence, and you will have no regrets.
The Pros of Buying a Used Home
There are three important reasons for buying pre-owned. The first is that it will cost less than a brand new home. Money saved can pay for expensive alterations that the builder may have charged more for in the new one. Those alterations will make the home feel new, and will make it feel like it really is yours. When you buy used, you can really see how the current family live, so you can imagine how the home will suit you. You get a better idea about closet space, kitchen use and furniture layout. The third big advantage of buying used is that, if it has been well-maintained, you will have nothing to do. New homes often need fixes because something was not done right or a piece of equipment fails. The current owner will have gone through that inconvenience, so you do not have to.
The Cons of Buying a Used Home
Many buyers often try to save money by doing everything themselves. They negotiate the price, they allow their emotions to rule their logic, and they do not understand the legal rights and responsibilities that come with buying or selling a home. Only a real estate attorney can explain the ramifications of contract’s the small print.
The age of the home has a huge negative impact on future comfort and possible future expense. Most buyers do not know how to check if repairs and home improvements have been properly permitted. They do not know about current building code. Older homes may be in need of substantial repairs or improvements that are not obvious to the layperson, so the buyer should order a professional home inspection. The inspection report will explain the home’s true condition, and the buyer must decide how best to proceed. Your real estate attorney will be able to explain what the contract allows with regard to renegotiating the price, having the seller cover repair costs, and proceeding with or canceling the purchase.
The biggest potential problem associated with buying a used home is to do with the home’s title. Does the seller really own the home? Are there any outstanding title claims? Is the chain of title clear and complete? Does the survey show encroachments? Problems in this area can be disastrous, and only a real estate attorney can interpret the title search results. Buying a home is a big decision. Do your due diligence and proceed with confidence.