Building a New Home vs. Remodeling an Existing One: The Pros and Cons

November 28, 2022

Building a New Home vs. Remodeling an Existing One: The Pros and Cons

November 28, 2022

Build a new house or remodel an existing property? This is a common dilemma faced by homeowners across the nation who are seeking a change in their living conditions. Unfortunately, it’s not an easy choice because there’s often so much at stake.

The correct course of action depends on your unique circumstances and location. Factors such as your family size, finances, future plans, potential lifestyle changes, and how you feel about your local area all play a big part in your decision.

To help bring you some further clarity, we’ve looked at the pros and cons of both options: building a new home and remodeling an existing one.

Why Are You Considering a Change?

Woman thinking about remodeling home or building a home

When making such a significant decision, it’s always important to begin with why. Why are you considering a change?

There are numerous reasons why people decide to build from scratch, remodel, or buy a new property. For example, you may need more room for a growing family, a more updated look, or a home with improved energy efficiency and smart technology.

What are your overall goals for the property? You may foresee a change in lifestyle needs for a growing family, or aging-in-place factors are becoming increasingly important. These considerations and more can influence a decision on whether to build afresh elsewhere or renovate your existing property.

Key Questions to Ask

Based on experience, we know some key questions that help Lafayette homeowners move closer to a firmer decision. They include:

Do you like your neighborhood? – If you love where you live and have a network of family and friends nearby, it can be an emotional upheaval for your family to move location.

Do you have home equity? - Home equity can be a smart way to finance a remodel that makes staying in place a preferable option.

What are the financing costs of both options? – Building a new home is usually more expensive than renovating, but a new house can sometimes be more cost-effective in the long term.

What’s the state of the current real estate market? – The real estate market is constantly changing. One year it can be more beneficial to move, and during another year, to stay put.

Do I have time to wait for a new house to be built? – A new house takes anything from five months to two years to build. A remodeling project is undoubtedly faster.

Is my family going to grow? – You can add extensions and remodel old rooms to add extra bedroom space. But sometimes, you just need a bigger place.These are just some of the key questions to ask yourself when choosing between building a brand new house and remodeling an existing one.

Budget Considerations

Budgeting for home remodel

What’s your budget? Before deciding one way or another, it’s essential to figure out exactly what you can realistically spend. For example, it’s usually less expensive to remodel an existing property than to purchase a lot (or demolish an existing structure) and build a new house from the ground up.

Define your budget parameters before making a final decision to avoid unpleasant financial surprises.

Pros of Remodeling Your Home

Remodeling Pros

Whether it’s a single room remodel or a complete property renovation, there are many benefits to remodeling your home instead of building anew.

You get to stay in the home you may have lived in for years that contains many happy memories and emotional investment. Remaining in place also reduces the disruption associated with moving to another area, which can be especially important for children and teenagers.

A well-planned remodeling project can increase your desired livable space in ways you might not currently imagine possible. For example, basements can be transformed, bathrooms enlarged, and kitchens opened up, thereby increasing the available space and your home’s resale value.

Skilled design-build remodeling professionals with knowledge of the latest smart home technologies can also help you incorporate environmentally friendly and energy-efficient features into an existing property. You don’t always need to start again to enjoy these benefits.

Similarly, an outdated and seemingly shabby interior can be almost magically transformed with an intelligent remodel, allowing you to stay in your dream home while ushering in a new ambiance and character.

If you live in a historic Lafayette or West Lafayette neighborhood, you can maintain the historical features and charm while combining these with ultra-modern technology and fixtures.

Cons of Remodeling

Remodeling Cons

Remodeling can also come with some disadvantages.

If a bank loan is required, it can be challenging to gain approval, especially if you’ve not lived in your current residence for a long time. However, there are loans available (up to 90% of your home value). Riverside Construction has fabulous connections with funding partners to recommend.

Another factor to consider is that remodeling projects seldom return a 100% return on investment. That said, many types of renovation projects can bring significant value and returns. These projects include kitchen, bathroom, and basement remodels.

Depending on your family and plans, remodeling projects can be highly disruptive, especially if it’s a comprehensive home transformation. It’s not recommended to remain in the property during significant refurbishments.

Pros of Building a New House

Working with designers

Like with staying in place and remodeling, there are also several benefits to building an entirely new house, whether on the same lot or elsewhere.

When you build a new house, you can design the structure to your desired specifications within your budget. You can choose floorplans and layouts that fit your family requirements, lifestyle goals, and interior décor dreams.

You have more freedom to design a home that aligns with your tastes and personality without needing to shoehorn designs into existing structures.

You can also go big when it comes to eco-friendly design options such as sustainable building materials and environmentally efficient energy features. Although you can also add these to a home during a remodel.

Cons of Building a New House

Landscaping

Building a new house from scratch also comes with drawbacks.

As previously covered, building a new house is significantly more expensive than remodeling an existing property.

There’s usually not a lot of leeway concerning the price of quality home building. While there are cheaper building options, these often come with flaws that mean more money needs to be spent in the future.

There are also landscaping costs, which are separate from the cost of the house.

And finally, existing properties are usually closer to metropolitan hubs and desirable locations. By their very nature, new homes tend to be built on the outskirts of existing neighborhoods and districts. As a result, finding a plot of land close to your dream location can sometimes be tricky.

Whether you build a new home or remodel an existing one, it’s essential to work with qualified and experienced professionals who can guide you from start to finish.

Work With a Qualified Design Build Firm like Riverside Construction

Riverside Construction, founded in 2008, is the go-to professional design-build team that has earned the respect and confidence of discerning homeowners in the Lafayette and West Lafayette areas.

With an award-winning team of highly skilled and experienced professionals in a range of fields, we excel at listening to client ideas and then translating those dreams into reality. We can help you decide on a direction, provide guidance on remodeling issues, and be with you every step of the way to ensure your dream home is achieved.

Contact us now to schedule an initial conversation about your upcoming remodel. We’ll be happy to answer your questions, listen to your ideas, soothe your worries, and work with you to finalize your plans.

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