My First Property

New Home Vs Old Home Considerations

A question that many potential first time buyers ask is "Should I buy a new build, or should I go for an older property?"

There are various different responses to this, and many of them, as ever, are that the answer depends on who you are, what you want, and why.

Most straightforwardly, if you don't like new properties but want something with a bit of 'character' and some sort of history and charm, then clearly new builds are not going to be as attractive to you as some older house that has that history, the period fireplace, or whatever else it is that you think you really need in your first home!

But if you have no such strong opinions one way or another, then there are various things to consider that could be pros or cons of either approach.

The New Build

What are the considerations is in favour of a new build? Well, depending on what you are purchasing, a new build can be a more affordable option, particularly if you are looking at flats.

And because they are new, then naturally you would expect on average there to be less unexpected costs and maintenance work required straightaway: although some who do move into new homes find problems as the first owner, so to counterbalance that there may be various calls to be made to the vendor of the property, but you should have a guarantee for a set period of time whereby you won't have to pay for those things: for instance if the cooker isn't put in properly or you find a chip on moving in to a window or one of the fixtures or fittings and so on, whereas of course anything you spot after you move in to a house that is not new you will have the financial cost to incur as well as the inconvenience of having to get it sorted.

There are also practical considerations: the insulation standards and energy efficiency standards that new builds have to meet are likely to be well-above those for older homes, which means consequently you should have to spend less on heating given the better insulation.

The Older Home

On the flip side, if you want a bit of character, then an older house is tough to beat. And if you don't mind doing a bit of DIY and making your own mark on a property, then you may consider the older home the better option. Add to that that many new builds are quite densely populated with the most made of the land on which they are built, then you may feel you don't want to be like a sardine in a tin as many people feel with a new build, and there may be other considerations: you might only get allocated one parking space at a new-build whereas there may be more flexibility elsewhere which helps when people come to visit and if you have two cars etc.

More first-time house buying articles:

  1. Double-Checks Before Exchanging Contracts
  2. How to Save for a House when Renting
  3. Pay Rent? Get Affordable Contents Insurance
  4. What is buildings and contents insurance?
  5. Finding Recent Sale Prices In An Area


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