New Construction in Jupiter Florida Do's and Dont's

New Construction in Jupiter Florida Do's and Dont's

What all goes into purchasing a new construction home? 


A lot- between builder recommended upgrades, short-lived trends, and making sure someone is looking out for YOUR best interest, there's a multitude of reasons as to why working with a Real Estate agent in a new construction transaction is in your best interest.

5 Upgrades That Aren’t Worth the Investment in New Construction

You’ll have a lot of decisions to make when building a new home. If you plan to customize or upgrade from the builder’s standard package, it will be essential to know what upgrades are not worth the price tag.

Here at The Wolfe Team, we specialize in helping buyers learn where to spend their dollars and where they can save.

We're going to share five upgrades that aren’t worth the investment, but can be easily upgraded down the road.

  1. Decorative Lighting – Because builder-grade lighting is often unattractive, it can be very tempting to upgrade the fixtures. Please don’t do it! Instead, have the builder install the standard fixtures that come with the home. Once you move in, you can find the fixtures you like and easily swap them out.

  2. Cabinet Hardware – When it comes to hardware, most builders have limited options, and the upgraded options are relatively basic. Since this upgrade does not require a lot of effort, have the builder install the standard pulls and knobs and change them once you’ve settled into your new home.

  3. Paint – When it comes to painting, most builders will have limited color options and use flat paint that quickly shows scuff marks and fingerprints. Because buyers may want their rooms a different color, they can get sucked into paying for the color upgrade. But buyer beware! Even if you paid for the upgrade, the paint’s quality would still be lacking, and you will not be able to choose the contractor of your choice. Once you’ve closed on the home, hire a contractor, or do it yourself with the quality of paint and color that suits your needs and budget.

  4. Backsplash – As tempting as it will be to have the builder add a backsplash, waiting will save you money. You can do it yourself or hire a handyman to do it for you once you’ve moved in. It will also give you time to shop around for the best price at the various tile shops and big-box stores.

  5. Crown Molding and Trim – Let’s face it, crown molding and trim on cabinets and walls, doors, and windows add beauty and character to a home while also giving it a finished look. It’s also a feature many buyers appreciate when purchasing a new home. However, it can be a pricey upgrade that does not add to the overall value and is easy to install later. So, resist the urge and save yourself money.

The builder's agent can be a good resource in the new construction process, but don’t forget they’re representing the builder in the sale! A builder's agent doesn’t want the buyer to have a bad experience, but their fiduciary duty lies with the builder.

Questions to ask the Builder? 

  1. How long has the builder been in business and building in the area? You want to ensure you're working with a reputable builder who knows the local market; who’s knowledgeable about the local area and market conditions.
  2. Can the builder provide three references of past clients? You want to know how the builder handles repairs and meets deadlines.
  3. What are standard and upgrade finishes? Make sure to receive an itemized list of the upgrade finishes so you know what’s standard and what’s an upgrade. Remember, those models have all the bells and whistles to make you want to buy them, but most of that fancy stuff will be added at a hefty price to the home.
  4. What is the timeline for each building phase? For example, how long will it take to lay the foundation and complete framing of the house.
  5. Can you have a 4-point inspection of the property? Four-point inspections are shorter evaluations that focus on four key areas in a home: electrical system, plumbing, roof, and the HVAC system. This can be costly. But you can hire licensed independent inspectors to double-check the builder’s quality of work during key phases of the construction process. Most builders welcome it because it helps affirm the quality of their work and protects them.
  6. What warranties are provided with the house? Typically, the builder offers a one-year warranty with the purchase and new appliance warranties, but there are extended warranties for things like construction, windows, and foundation, etc.
  7. Is landscaping included in the front or back?
  8. What is the size of the lot? Make sure it is included in the purchase price, or ask if there a lot premium.
  9. Does the builder offer any incentives for purchasing the property? Sometimes, builders will give a closing cost credit and if you use their preferred lender they will give you even more closing cost credit. But again, be careful as the mortgage broker is also wanting to keep the builder happy, so make sure there is no conflict of interest.
  10. Is the builder aware of any major developments planned at this time or in the next 5 years near the property? For example a zoning change of the property next door to commercial?

At The Wolfe Team, we’ve walked many homebuyers through the process of purchasing a new construction property, avoiding potential pitfalls and stressors, while advocating for their best interest each step of the way.

Having an experienced buyer’s agent to help you through your new construction purchase has many benefits;

It’s customary for the builder to pay the buyer agent’s fee, so it’s FREE to you. This typically comes from their marketing budget and because of that, you won't be getting a better deal by not using your own agent. Actually, the opposite is typically true here.

Not every builder has the same level of experience and delivers the same quality of a home.

An experienced buyer’s agent will have knowledge about the various builders' track records, and they will have a good eye for the quality of the construction for each development and home.

Your real estate agent can negotiate on your behalf. With new construction homes, there are often opportunities to negotiate the purchase price, upgrades to the home, and credits towards closing costs. Don’t leave money on the table or miss opportunities for upgrades and customizations because you don’t have someone solely in your corner advocating for you.  

The purchase documents for a new construction typically are created by the builder’s attorney. These documents are often written in favor of protecting the builder’s best interests. Understanding the various clauses in the documents is essential. Your real estate agent can help you through this process. They will comb over the contract and bring up any issues or concerns. Additionally, they can help you address any items of concern with the builder and seller’s agent. 

Excluding a natural disaster or other unforeseen circumstances, a builder should complete your home in a reasonable amount of time. With that said, it is not uncommon for builders to have delays and for buyers to be left in limbo frustrated waiting for their homes to be completed. Your agent can be the squeaky wheel pushing for your home to be prioritized and ultimately minimizing delays.

When it comes to buying new construction, there are lots of benefits that come with working with an experienced real estate agent, and here at The Wolfe Team, we're here to help you.

Check out our favorite New Construction community, Bridgewater by DiVosta here!

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Strategic Marketing, Clear Communication, and Experience have consistently placed Erica Gouldy Wolfe, and now the Wolfe Team, among the top professionals in the real estate industry. Utilizing the latest technologies and marketing strategies they are raising the bar in the industry, all while raising the views on your home.