When it comes to finding the perfect home, one of the first decisions you’ll need to make is whether to buy an existing home or build a new one. Both options have their advantages and disadvantages, and understanding them is crucial in making an informed decision. In this article, we’ll explore the pros and cons of each choice, helping you determine which path is best suited for your needs and preferences.

Buying an Existing Home

Convenience and Cost

One of the primary advantages of buying an existing home is the convenience it offers. Once you’ve been pre-approved by a lender, you can start shopping around and make an offer on a home that meets your requirements. With the help of a qualified real estate agent, you can streamline the process by finding suitable properties, negotiating the terms, and handling the paperwork. This way, you can potentially close the deal and move into your new home within 30-45 days.

Schedules and Cost

Buying an existing home becomes particularly attractive when you’re on a tight schedule, such as relocating for work or starting a new school year. Additionally, purchasing an existing home can be more cost-effective. According to the National Association of Home Builders, buyers in the United States save an average of $6,000 when buying an existing home compared to building a new one. Considering the median single-family list price of $415,000 in 2023, this cost difference can be significant.

Convenience vs. Customization

Existing homes often come with mature landscaping, providing an immediate visual appeal. You can easily see the layout of the house and judge whether it fits your needs. However, older homes might require renovations or expansions to meet your preferences. It’s crucial to factor in the potential expenses of these updates when comparing the overall costs of different properties or the cost of building a new home.

Building a New Home

Design Choices and Customization

Building a new home offers the opportunity to have a space that is tailored to your exact preferences. From choosing the interior and exterior designs to deciding on energy-efficient measures, you have complete control over the outcome. Working with a reputable builder and having a well-defined contract in place can help minimize the risks of cost overruns and ensure that your vision is realized.

Energy Efficiency and Modern Standards

One of the significant advantages of building a new home is the ability to incorporate energy-saving measures. From heating, ventilation, and air conditioning systems to insulation and air filtration, you can ensure that your new home meets the latest energy codes and standards. This not only reduces your environmental footprint but also leads to potential long-term cost savings on energy bills.

Everything Is New

By building a new home, you eliminate the need for costly renovations or repairs that often come with older homes. New homes usually come equipped with energy-efficient appliances and modern HVAC systems, providing additional savings and comfort. Furthermore, older homes may contain hazardous materials like lead paint or asbestos, which can pose health risks and require costly remediation. Building new ensures that you start with a clean slate and avoid these potential hazards.

Considerations When Building a New Home

Cost Risks

While building a new home offers customization and modern features, it’s essential to be aware of potential cost risks. The longer timeline associated with building means that costs can add up or increase along the way. To mitigate this, it’s advisable to opt for a lump-sum contract instead of a cost-plus contract. A lump-sum contract specifies a fixed price for construction, placing the risk of cost overruns on the builder rather than the buyer.


When purchasing an existing home, buyers and sellers can opt for a warranty that ensures the appliances and mechanical systems remain in working order until the buyer takes possession. This can help protect against unexpected expenses and provide peace of mind. Similarly, when building a new home, most builders offer warranties that cover workmanship and materials for various systems in the house, including windows, HVAC, plumbing, and electrical. Understanding the warranty coverage is crucial when making your decision.

Supervision and Collaboration

Building a new home involves collaboration between various parties, including developers, architects, builders, and construction superintendents. It’s important to ensure that you have a reliable team overseeing the construction process to ensure that your vision is executed correctly and within the agreed timeline and budget.

Making the Decision

When deciding between buying an existing home or building a new one, it’s crucial to consider your specific circumstances, preferences, and budget. While buying an existing home offers convenience and potential cost savings, building a new home provides customization and modern features. By carefully weighing the pros and cons of each option, you can make an informed decision that aligns with your needs and long-term goals.

Remember, whether you choose to buy an existing home or build a new one, it’s important to work with professionals who can guide you through the process and help you achieve your dream home.

Contact us (859) 979-1508) for a free consultation!
Buy  |  Sell  |  Rent  |  Build

About The Real Estate Company

Residential and Multi-family Realty Services for Lexington, Richmond, and Surrounding Areas. We close over 40 million in sales each year. Our love for Central Kentucky and our clients is the key to our success. We provide careful guidance, persistence, and savvy marketing to deliver results for our clients time after time.
Learn More