build a house

When to Buy & When to Build a House

If you want to move, the question of buying an existing home or constructing a new one is probably on your mind. The truth is, there is no quick or easy answer. It depends on many factors, including time, money and your wants & needs. Here are a few pros and cons to help you decide if you should buy or build a house.


If your schedule is tight because you’re relocating for work or your kids are about to start school, then buying is probably best. Once you find the right place, which can take a while, you can usually close and move in after two months.

Building usually takes six to seven months, but the process can be longer if the land, weather or contractor don’t cooperate. And if you sell your existing house before construction is finished, you may have to find temporary accommodations.


Purchasing a home comes with lower initial costs. Plus, you likely won’t pay for expensive landscaping because the grass, rocks & other features are established. Mature trees, for example, add property value and can help with air-conditioning bills.

Up-front costs for new housing are higher than resales in most cases. If you build, however, you’ll benefit from up-to-date wiring, plumbing and HVAC systems. You won’t worry about repairing an old furnace or replacing a roof, as most of these homes are under warranty for years after they’re finished. You’ll also save on utilities with the latest in energy-saving and eco-friendly enhancements.


If you build, you can get exactly what you want. There are few, if any, concessions to make or design flaws to overcome — the home matches your personality. Yet when you buy used, you can visualize the floor plan because it’s already there. There’s no need to wait to see how it will all turn out.

Newer construction tends to be in developing areas, so you may be farther away from the center of town and your surroundings will change. There’s also things like water, sewer, gas, electric, cable and internet to consider.

On the other hand, you’re joining an established neighborhood when you buy pre-owned. You can talk to your potential neighbors and hear what they think of the area before deciding.

Whether you buy or to build, America First offers low-rate mortgages, construction, and lot loans to get your dream home going.