Building a new house or Buying an existing home: Which is your best option?

Is it cheaper to build a house or buy an existing one in Vancouver, British Columbia? The last quarter of last year brought homebuyers a dilemma with the low inventory in the housing market. There weren’t enough homes for sale.

However, the latest statistics from the Canadian Real Estate Association showed a decline in home sales between April and May 2022 by 8.6 percent. With the sales down, inventories are starting to rebuild, putting more houses on the market.

Buying a house is a big decision. There are numerous pros and cons and factors you have to consider. Homebuyers are faced with the choice of building a new home or buying an existing house. Let’s make a side-by-side comparison between both options.

Urgency and Timeframe

Are you in a hurry to move? Timeframe or the urgency to move into a new house is an essential determining factor in your decision to build a new home or buy an existing one.

New Construction

The average timeline to build a house in Canada is between six to ten months, including the processing of relevant permits and plans, depending on the type of home you want. If you prefer to build your house, you may have a longer wait. You can check out Pre construction projects for sale. The COVID-19 pandemic has caused building delays due to the disruption of materials and labor supply. Real estate agents can help you understand the contract terms and advise you of potential risks.

Existing home

If you want or need to move into a new house immediately, your best option is to check homes for sale. Resale homes can be ready as soon as you close the deal.

Depending on the seller, you can typically move into a resale home faster after your closing date. In most cases, you may have to wait for at least 15 days to move to allow the seller to move out. In some instances, the wait could stretch from one to three months. It’s still faster than building a new home. Cash buyers often find it even faster to close and move in.


For many homebuyers, location is a deal-breaker in choosing their new neighborhood. Questions to be addressed include the distance from transportation access, shopping, and other facilities.

New Construction

New construction homes are usually some distance from urban areas, especially with the major construction boom for residential housing in Canada. If you opt to build a single-detached home, you may face longer commutes and years of construction closer to your location.

Existing Home

Buying an existing home gives you the advantage of moving to an older, established neighborhood with grown trees, yard spaces, developed parks, and transportation routes nearby.

If you want a house closer to shopping facilities, restaurants, coffee shops, and entertainment centers, you may consider looking at presale condos for sale and apartments. Statistics Canada showed over 1.2 million people live in the downtown portion of Canada’s urban centers. However, the infrastructure and amenities could be outdated since they had been around for a while.

Maintenance and repair costs

Maintenance is an issue you have to deal with as a homebuyer. What are your expectations in your new home?

New Construction

If you opt to build a new home, maintenance and repair costs could be nothing or less or nothing in the first few years as everything is brand new. However, this depends on your home builder. Even if your house is brand new, surprise repair works could spring up unexpectedly, especially if the constructors used subpar materials.

Check out for options of Pre construction projects for sale. This is why working with professional real estate agents is crucial. The professionals know what to look for and identify the reputable home builders in the area for you.

Existing Home

Buying an existing home or presale condos for sale is buying something that has been used. Even if you got an excellent deal, there would be maintenance and repair costs down the road, especially if you buy an older house.

For example, if the HVAC suddenly stops working in the middle of a three-digit temperature, you may have to shell out from $150 to $450 for repair costs.  The worst scenario is you have to replace the whole HVAC system, which could cost you from $5,000 to $10,000, depending on the size and brand.

If a faucet leaked or the roof needs repairs, you’re looking at more expenses. Professional real estate agents can recommend certified home inspectors to check the overall house condition before buying.

House design

The design of your next home depends totally on whether you opt for new construction or existing homes for sale.

New Construction

Building a brand-new house gives you the freedom to incorporate elaborate features and details, like walk-in pantries, kitchen islands, double bathroom sinks, and more. You might also find good deals on presale condos for sale and Pre construction projects for sale.

Existing Home

Your design options are fewer in buying existing homes and presale condos for sale unless you are willing to spend thousands of dollars to redesign an existing house. You can scout around for a resale home that is within your budget and do renovations.

Bottom Line

After considering all the factors involved, there is no one-size-fits-all solution to the choice between building a home or buying a resale. The good news is purchasing a home doesn’t have to be overwhelming. Professionals who have your best interests in mind are there to help.

Real estate agents can provide guidance and expertise, help you avoid costly mistakes, and make an informed decision on your search for your new home. Whatever is your option, call us today to schedule a free consultation.

    Post a Comment