In some cases, you can save money by buying an older home. In general, homes that are decades old cost less per square foot than newly-built homes. This is not always the case. For instance, historical homes that have been updated and well-maintained are likely to have an elevated value. If your home-buying budget is lower than the average price in your market, you’ll likely be looking at older homes.
If having a home close to the city center or downtown is important to you, you should be open to buying an older home. Houses surrounding the center of town generally tend to be some of the oldest homes in the area because development started from there and then grew outwards.
It’s a common misconception that new homes are perfect and won’t require repairs. There can be issues in new homes just like in old homes. However, because an older home has seen many more years of use and has older components that may be reaching the end of their lifespans, you’re likely to face more ongoing costs. Set aside money for costs like replacing the roof, re-siding the home, and installing a new water heater.
Buying an Older House With Character
One reason that some homebuyers prefer older homes is that they tend to have a more unique character. New homes tend to look similar to one another, especially if all the homes in the development were built at the same time. Homes built many decades ago have charming features and majestic details that you may prefer for your living space.
Wear and Tear
As the first owner of a new home, you won’t come across any wear and tear. Even in a well-maintained home that is only a decade old, you’ll probably notice some signs of wear and tear. Wear and tear is something that will eventually happen to every home, so it can’t be ultimately avoided. If you purchase a newly-built home, you’ll start to see wear and tear caused by your own family after a few years.
Potential Hazards of Buying an Older House
There are some potential hazards that exist in older homes that you won’t face in newer ones. Lead paint was commonly used in houses until 1978. Asbestos in building materials was widely used until the 1980s. These contaminants may be in older homes and pose a serious threat when they are disturbed by damage or renovations. If you are considering buying an older home, educate yourself about these hazards, and have the home tested for them.