If you're thinking whether or not you should buy an old house and spend the money you save on renovations, you're facing a real dilemma. There's so many things you have to consider before you decide between old or new, and one of them is the cost of maintenance versus decoration.
After all, the house needs to fit your lifestyle, your style, and your taste, as well as your budget. You can also easily underestimate the cost of renovation and get yourself into debt.
If you're undecided, look through the below tips to help you make up your mind.
One thing you should absolutely check when shopping around for homes is the cost of running them. This includes the energy efficiency. If you buy an older house, the insulation might be outdated, and - to make the most out of your heating and air conditioning budget- you'll need to spend money on getting your windows and doors changed, as well as adding additional insulation to your roof or walls. This can cost you tens of thousands of dollars.
The space available is also important when buying a house. You might get a smaller old property and extend it to your needs, or build one yourself that fits your requirements perfectly. Older period homes often come with smaller living spaces and larger bedrooms. If the property is a part of a heritage area, you'll be restricted to what you can change in the layout and the exterior, so it's always better to check before you sign the dotted line.
One of the benefits of buying a newly built house is that you'll be able to get a warranty on the fixtures, as well as the heating system, which will give you peace of mind. It's important you don’t spend more on the property than you planned, or you'll end up blowing all your budget on repairs. There are so many things that can go wrong with old houses; from the roof to the cracks in the foundation and old pipework, which is certainly food for thought.
Your preferred decor style will also have an impact on what type of house you buy. You will need to think about how much customization the property allows. It is perfectly possible to add traditional decor to your modern home, but it's hard to achieve the opposite. If you love period pieces, you'll need to make the most out of the original features; the carved staircase, the wooden beams, and the high ceilings.
Cost of Living
When you buy a new home you usually use a home loan calculator to work out your monthly costs, but you should also include the cost of living to find out whether or not you can afford the location. Old historic towns and villages are generally more expensive to live in, and they are popular among the retired and wealthy. However, they have a charm, the community spirit, and the safety you might want for your children. Doing your shopping, however, might become more expensive. You'll either need to get in the car and go to a larger supermarket in the closest town, or simply buy locally.
Work to Be Done
If you buy a new home, you'll have all the checks completed and the reports printed by the builders and be ready to move in without any trouble. However, if you want to buy at a lower cost and renovate, you'll need to get a structural survey and talk to an expert to make sure you can do what you are planning to do with the house. The last thing you want is finding out that you would compromise the structural stability of your home by knocking down a wall to make your living area open plan.
When you start thinking about your ideal home, you'll be trying to turn it into something unique that represents your taste and your personality. There are limited options when it comes to ready designs that are built based on pre-approved plans and as standard. However, by extending an old home, you can make the most out of your customization tools and impress your future guests while making your new home comfortable for all occupants.