The Upstate SC

VOL12ISS2 2016

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THE ORIGINAL RELOCATION GUIDE — UPSTATE SC | VOLUME 12 — ISSUE 2 62 BUYING OR BUILDING A HOME When relocating and wanting to own your home, housing easily pushes its way to the forefront of life's basic needs. How you choose to do that is not as easy an answer. When you find yourself in the market for a new home you will be considering whether to build or just to buy a house. It is true most housing markets offer a wide assortment of styles, price ranges and locations, but buying may not suit everyone's needs or desires. Building a home, on the other hand, while allowing homeowners to customize the property to their unique specifications and create a place that's perfectly suited to their family's lifestyle, is definitely 'not' an instant fix. Let's start with the different costs associated with both buying and building houses. While buying a home may mean you initially sacrifice some of the features you want, it also means you're subject to the market. When there are more existing homes on the market than there are sellers available to buy them, prices can be more attractive and you'll find the most house for the least money. However, in a seller's market, you may face a markup in the cost of that new house that may stagger the faint of heart. There are some static costs and concerns that will be in the mix when buying a new home. For instance, there's the initial purchase price of the home and land. There is the time it takes to find a home, the time it takes to negotiate an offer, and then the time to 'close'. If there are any renovations you need to make to adapt the home to your family's use (or wants), the time and money needed will have to be calculated. Finally you should add in closing costs, legal fees, and if you found your property through a realtor – their commission. Building can be just as costly as buying and usually is more time-consuming. While it offers a customized home in the end, it can often take longer than you might expect to go from those sketched out dreams on a dinner napkin, to architectural renderings, to actually having drinks beside the fireplace with family and friends. Many builders and contractors are involved in numerous building projects at one time so it can be difficult and expensive to obtain their undivided attention and services for your new dream house. If you have a particular builder in mind, just like any other industry you might be wise to consider starting a building project in their off/down season when they're more available and more amenable to making price concessions. For costs to consider for building a new home, think about things like the initial price of the land, add to that the cost of materials and design services, plus contractor fees and the overall time it takes to build a home (including potential delays). There are many tasks to complete from buying the lot, securing building permits, hiring a contractor and seeing to utility hook-ups, as well as getting construction financing in place. While still on the subject of cost, whether buying or building think about the myriad styles of home floor plans available today. Home floor plan designs not only impact your family's lifestyle but can have major impact on the home's resale value as well. It's probably a good idea to consider several different types of homes and look at several home floor plan designs to get a strong sense of the layout you want. If you're building, home floor plans are an essential part of the process, but even when Question: To Build or To Buy BY STUART JAMES

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