Remodeling Vs. New Home

Remodeling VS. New Home

To Remodel or Build a New Home???  This is the question that I have been asked the most in the past four weeks.  Numerous phone calls have been coming in for us to look at current homes to see if it is wise to add square footage to the home- whether a second story addition or an addition to the first floor- OR if the owner should buy a lot and build a home at a better price.

This is a great sign for the home building industry and where it is going to go this year and years to come.  This type of phone call was not happening last year or the year before.

So, in this post, I want to break out the pro & cons of building a new home vs. remodeling or adding on to an existing home built around 1960 or so.

Remodeling:  When remodeling or adding to your existing home, you have many things to consider.  Do I keep the existing layout? Move exterior walls? Change the existing ceiling height? Update the kitchen and bathrooms?  Or do I keep everything as is and add a second story?  These are all great questions and things you will need to consider when remodeling.

A great thing about remodeling is that you get to keep the home that you already love, and adjust it to meet your changing needs! More PROs…you already like the location, you have built memories in the home, and you know your neighbors.  Sometimes you can’t create this same atmosphere in another location, which is why remodeling is so great.

The main challenge with remodeling is that you do have to work with your existing layout.  This is why getting connected with the right architect and builder is so important.  Experienced professionals can help you overcome this challenge.  It may take some creative thinking, but being flexible with designs and layout will make the process much easier.

Also, it is important to look at what you will have invested in your home (purchase price + the remodel/addition price) to make sure you are not putting too much into your home, compared to what other homes are selling for in your area.

By remodeling and updating your home, you can achieve a more functional space to suit your new needs, while at the same time, making your home feel like new.

New Home:  Let’s start with some PROs…When you are building a new home you have a blank canvas and are able to create whatever you want!  There are endless options for your floor plan and layout; you are able to get brand new everything…plumbing, electrical, HVAC, etc.

A new home will also be much more energy efficient due to having brand new everything (i.e. plumbing, electrical, hvac, windows).  In addition, the new home will not require as much maintenance as keeping up with an older home built in the 1950’s.

Things to consider when building a new home are… am I able to find a lot that is in the right location? and is it the right price?  Again, it’s important to consider the whole investment (buying the lot + building new home).  You want to be sure that you are not priced higher than all of the other homes in the neighborhood.  When building a new home, you are usually able to build the home cheaper than it costs for you to buy a new home already completed (The dollars per square foot are less to build than the dollars per square foot to buy).  From a construction standpoint, it is simpler for a builder to build a new home than to remodel an existing home.

Pricing gets tricky when just speaking in generalities.   Many times a remodel is less expensive, BUT at a certain point, building a new home can be less expensive—this is usually when you are completely gutting a home and taking it down to the stud walls in the remodel.

Above are just some thoughts and questions that can get you started in the right direction when considering if you should remodel or build new.  Each client I meet with has a different scenario, whether it’s the budget, neighborhood, or growing family.  I would be happy to meet with you to see what the best option is for you.  Nix Group has completed many remodels and new builds thought the 16 years of home construction, and we are always looking to add more to the list.