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Desktop with scattered house plans, a calculator and a small stylized house model

    New Construction:

    Should You Take a Look at Clark County Washington?

There are really three questions here-
  1. Should I be considering new construction at all? 
  2. If so, do I want to have something custom-built or do I want to buy a "spec" helps?
  3. Why would I buy or build in Clark County vs someplace else?
New vs. Existing: There are many for whom newness does not matter; all they are looking for is a comfortable place to live for themselves and their family  regardless of its age.  There are others who will end up buying a new or recently-built home because it's the best way for them to get the amenities they require.  Finally, they are are the buyers who have the same feeling that many automobile buyers have: "I want one that nobody else has owned or used."  Most of these buyers will end up looking at either building or buying something that's relatively new.

On the other hand, there are buyers who have some friend or relative who had "a bad experience building."  To them, new construction is to be avoided if at all possible.  Some people are put off by the expenses of new construction, especially if they are inclined to upgrade all the components of the home as it's being built.

Custom vs. Spec: There are two broad categories of new construction:custom and 'spec.'

      Custom: If you want a house done to your exact requirements, want to pick your own floorplan, want a really large lot or small acreage, or want an estate-type property, you might be interested in a custom home.

If you go this route, in most cases you are looking at a build time in the 7- to 8-month range. You should have lots of time and a budget that will cover a 10% or more overage from where you start out to allow for upgrades and for the unexpected.

There are excellent custom builders in Clark County. I know who they are -- and aren't! Many high-priced builders are not any better than some of their lower-priced competitors. You want someone who is onsite (at least some of the time), someone who is financially stablespace (all of the time), and someone whose reputation for honesty and quality is top notch.

The down-side of 'win-lost' negotiations: I have known buyers who negotiated such a "good deal" with the builder that the builder was rarely working on their house. Instead, he was at another project where he was making a reasonable profit!

     Spec: The second main type of new construction is a “spec” builder.These hardy souls have borrowed money from the bank to build spec (speculative) houses that they believe will sell before or soon after completion.these smaller spec builders account for only a small percentage of the new construction in Clark County.

The other type of spec builder is the volume builder.  She may build anywhere from a dozen to 100 homes per year in good times. These builders already control many lots and many subdivisions. They have more economies of scale since their subcontractors can work on several homes that are close together and at the same stage. The best of the volume builders exceed in quality some of the custom builders.

Many volume builders have many choices in floorplans and sizes.  They allow some customization and choices by the buyer, while others might offer only a few plans and a few color schemes to choose from. Some provide a lot of bang for the buck in their finish materials, but lack the quality inside the walls and under the house.

When choosing your options, a real estate agent who works for you can ensure you don't make any poor choices unwittingly. It might cost only $250 more to choose a sink that will help your resale value $500 worth five years from now when you go to sell.

Your choice of builders may be lessened if you are tied to a particular part of the county or a particular school district. But we can still help you make the best choice for your needs.

Many new home builders are offering special deals and upgrades in today's tough market, and a buyer's agent may be able to help you get more than you'd expect for your money.

Since nearly all builders include a fee for a buyer's agent in their cost figures . it's rare for you as a buyer to pay more for being represented by your own knowledgeable new construction specialist.