Interested in buying a new construction home in Boise, ID? Among the many key advantages of owning a new construction home are the minimal repair and maintenance costs. All materials used, appliances, and systems are up to code and energy efficient. A new construction home is move-in ready and has a floor plan and amenities that meet the needs of modern living.
Another major bonus to owning a brand new home is getting peace of mind. It’s a brand new home in pristine condition, which means you won’t have to deal with any mistakes, poor maintenance, or unsightly design choices left by previous owners.
However, many people don’t realize that the process of purchasing a new construction home requires the same level of attention to detail as buying a previously owned home. You can get caught off-guard by numerous hidden costs and some unexpected defects after you’ve moved in.
But with the right approach, you’ll be able to reduce costs strategically and get the home you’ve always envisioned. By taking time to learn more about the process, you’re putting yourself in a better position to make well-informed decisions, spend your money wisely, and get a new home that meets all of your unique requirements and preferences.
On this page, we offer several tips that can help you lower costs when buying a new construction home in Boise, ID.
WHAT IS A NEW CONSTRUCTION HOME?
In a nutshell, a new construction home is a brand new house that has never been lived in. There are two ways for buyers to obtain one. They could either purchase a spec home and the lot it’s located on from a developer, or buy their own plot of land and then contract with a builder, an architect, and other professionals needed to build a new home.
A new construction home is a terrific choice for many reasons. After all, it’s brand new, move-in ready, and can be customized to have top-quality upgraded features. However, they tend to cost more than existing homes, especially when they have upscale fixtures and upgrades.
As of December 2022, the median sales price of a new construction home is $442,100, according to this report from the US Census Bureau and Department of Housing and Urban Development. The average sales price for new homes is even higher at $528,400. The higher prices are due to several significant factors such as new materials, market growth, increasing home values, and builder scarcity.
HELPFUL TIPS FOR REDUCING COSTS FOR YOUR NEW CONSTRUCTION HOME
Establish a budget and stick to it
Before you even proceed with the initial stages, thoroughly assess how much you can afford to spend. Check in with a financial advisor if you can, for good measure. As with any major purchase, you run the risk of overspending.
This is precisely why it’s imperative that you have a handle on not only how much you’re willing to spend, but how much you’ll actually be able to. Once you have a concrete figure, keep it in mind as you navigate the succeeding steps in the process. Do not go beyond that figure, no matter how tempting it may seem.
Be flexible with the base price
A new construction home’s base price is the initial and most important price you’ll need to consider.
The base price includes the property’s structure, lot, finishes, and landscaping. What it doesn’t include are elements like exterior and interior upgrades, and additional structural options like room expansions or fireplaces. That being said, you’ll want to go with a base price that offers plenty of flexibility for your budget in terms of the final cost. It’s crucial that your base price will allow you to have the wiggle room to get your preferred additions and features without overspending.
Look for new communities
If you’re not pressed for time, a great opportunity to get major savings when you’re searching for new homes for sale in Boise, ID is to look for upcoming residential developments. Developers of soon-to-rise communities are eager to attract homebuyers, and one way for them to get more buyers on board is by offering pre-construction pricing opportunities that will allow you to purchase a new home at lower prices.
However, the amount of savings you can get on a pre-construction varies with every development, so it’s best to get in touch with every development you come upon to find the best deal. Note down all of the new developments you can find in the area, and call the sales representative for each to inquire about any bonuses they might offer.
Another benefit of buying into a new community is that you’ll have built-in equity by the time you close. This is mainly because home prices in the community will increase naturally as the developer sells more and more properties over time. After your new home is built, it’s likely that it will be worth more than what you paid for.
Choose your homebuilder strategically
Gather information on several different builders in your area and take note of the advantages and disadvantages each one brings to the table. Decide which one offers the most value for your money.
Some home builders offer better incentives, lower base prices, or superior upgrades, so taking time to do a little bit of research before you commit to a particular builder is always a smart move. In addition to costs, don’t forget about comparing quality as well. One of the worst things you want to avoid is spending your hard-earned money only to get subpar or faulty features.
Work with a real estate agent and familiarize yourself with mortgages and interest rates
Walking to a sales office to purchase a new home for sale in Boise, ID isn’t as straightforward as it might seem. Many builders have an agent onsite and a set of preferred lenders, and it’s not uncommon for them to suggest prospective buyers work with their dedicated team.
Remember that the builder’s agent will look after the best interests of the builder, and it’ll be wise not to assume that any financing arranged by the builder will be the best one available. There are also some preferred lenders who offer incentives and discounts, but you can get more savings throughout the life of your loan if you can find an outside lender who charges less in points.
Like you would with a purchase of an existing home, gather as much information as you can about different mortgage types and interest rates from local lenders. Afterward, research and interview several real estate agents to help you get the best deal.
Negotiate the sales price
Unlike most sellers of existing homes, builders aren’t as open to price negotiations. In fact, some will refuse to negotiate under any circumstances. However, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t at least try.
Builders keep prices within a community at a certain range, just so they can avoid upsetting buyers who eventually find out that some of their neighbors got way better deals on their homes, even if they bought them around the same time.
While there might be some room for negotiations, be careful not to ask for too low a price, as this could put you in a disadvantageous position. If the builder needs to sell more homes, asking for a lower price will not be good for the appraisals in the new community. Home values may start to drop, which may impact both the builder and the surrounding property values negatively.
Choose a stock house plan
Choosing a simple stock floor plan is a great way to reduce costs on a new construction home. More square footage, angles, corners, and exterior edges in a floor plan translates to higher prices since it requires more time, labor, and materials to complete. Most home builders offer stock floor plans that they have completed numerous times for other clients. As a result, errors have already been eliminated from these designs, so you can count on a smooth, problem-free build that will save you more time and money.
Even if you’re not an engineer or architect, you can get rid of the extra expense of a custom blueprint by choosing a stock house plan that meets your preferences and budget. This is a terrific option, especially for those who are able to visualize two-dimensional blueprints in three dimensions and have a keen eye for design.
While there are limitations to what you can alter in the home’s layout, you can avail of some customization services, which blueprint companies and builders offer for an additional fee. Hiring a professional to make key adjustments to the blueprint can also be a cost-friendlier option compared to paying a premium price to have a fully customized design.
Also, consider the size of your garage and its amenities. Forgoing additional garage space, shelving units, finishes, and other amenities enables you to save more money.
Choose a simple roof system
In terms of materials and labor, one of the most expensive parts of a new home for sale in Boise, ID you’ll need to budget for is the roof. Selecting a simpler roof system means fewer expenses.
While a more complicated roof system with hips and valleys and a steeper pitch might seem more aesthetically compelling, a roof with a single ridgeline and a shallow pitch will serve the same purpose and will be significantly less expensive.
Gather info on appliance costs
Homebuilders typically contract with one or two appliance companies or manufacturers, and then provide a selection of standard and premium appliances from those companies. Keep in mind that your options aren’t limited to what they offer.
You can search for more affordable options from those same appliance manufacturers, and then ask the builder if they’ll be able to get those models for you instead (they usually agree). You can also close without the appliances and then purchase the cost-friendly versions after. Or, you can combine both options if it makes better sense for your budget and situation.
With appliances, the key is to not take what they offer at face value. You can make many adjustments to lower appliance expenses. As long as you do thorough research, it’s easy to get the appliances you want at prices that accommodate your budget.
Inquire about closing cost incentives
You won’t be asked to pay for your new construction home until it’s considered move-in ready (except for the down payment). However, you’ll want to work with a lender during the initial stages to avoid potential problems during closing.
There are homebuilders who offer special incentives for clients who work with their preferred lenders. These incentives can take a couple of thousand dollars off your closing costs. If you’re looking to reduce costs, try to get in touch with preferred lenders from the builder you’re considering first. If you’ll be able to get a great mortgage deal through them, you’re all set.
Consider the DIY approach
While a lot of builders offer fair prices, you can cut your expenses down significantly by forgoing professional labor and tackling projects yourself, especially if you consider yourself handy.
Take note that some items (like kitchen sinks) will need to be installed before closing to get your loan approved by the bank. However, there are many other items that you can opt to implement eventually, as long as you’re good with not having your new home 100% ready after you’ve moved in.
Once you get quotations from your builder, take a trip down to your local hardware store to see how much items you know how to install cost. You’ll be surprised at the amount of savings you can get if you choose to go the DIY route!
Select standard options, then upgrade later
Those interested in new homes for sale in Boise, ID will be able to choose from a wide variety of design features like window treatments, kitchen finishes, and lighting fixtures.
Consider going with all standard options, and then upgrading incrementally after you’ve moved in. Standard options in new construction homes are already included in the base price, so you’re assured of getting a fully functional home, along with more space on your budget to spend on other things. And you won’t need to worry about the included standard features going to waste since you can sell them after upgrading.
You can save more money by shopping for deals on your own instead of selecting options provided by the builder. Try searching for deals online or shopping for stylish and unique pieces at secondhand shops. You’ll be able to save even more if you know how to install those features yourself.
Get a home inspection
Home inspections aren’t solely for existing homes. For new construction homes, it’s recommended to get two inspections: one before all of the walls are closed up, and another one after. In case there are any plumbing or electrical problems, you’ll spend less on repairs than if the drywall is already up.
The second inspection should be scheduled prior to the final walkthrough with the builder. This presents a great opportunity for you to get maintenance tips, find out what to look out for, and ask the inspector any questions you might have about your new home.
Make sure you have a home inspection contingency in the sales contract, which allows you to back out of the deal if the inspection reveals a major problem.
Barring any issues in the inspection, you’ll be on track to closing on your new home. All that’s left is to pay for the closing costs, sign some paperwork, and you’ll be on your way towards homeownership.
WORK WITH ELLIOT HOYTE AND THE HOYTE GROUP TODAY
Ready to start your search for the best new homes for sale in Boise, ID? Top Realtor Elliot Hoyte and our elite team of experts from The Hoyte Group are ready to go above and beyond to assist you in your search. Elliot is a premier agent ranked in the top 1% of Realtors in Idaho’s Treasure Valley and a recipient of the prestigious “30 under 30” award from the National Association of Realtors.