Is it better to buy a new home or an older home? This is a question that we hear many times from homebuyers when they are thinking of buying a new home in Kelowna. The upfront answer is simple - it depends.
Whether you are buying a resale home in Kelowna or buying a new home in Kelowna, the right choice completely depends on you: your needs, your likes and dislikes, your patience, and your budget. Both options have their own sets of advantages and drawbacks. Before you decide what side of the fence that you fall on, let's talk about new homes vs. resale homes in Kelowna.
Advantages of Buying a Resale Home in Kelowna
There are so many wonderful resale homes available in Kelowna, offering you lots of choice for neighbourhoods, amenities, schools, and commuting. They stretch many different eras, styles, and have unique and rich histories that is woven into fabric of our city. Here are some of the advantages to buying a resale home in Kelowna:
Established Neighbourhood. There are a lot of perks to buying a resale home in an established neighbourhoods. The mature trees lining the streets, the wide boulevards perfect for running, the parks perfect for a family picnic - these are all things that take time to build and develop.
Mature neighbourhoods often have a diverse group of residents from young families to retirees. The advantage to this is a less homogeneous area, and creates a place where neighbours know each other and care for each other, giving you a true sense of community.
Buyer's Tip: Looking for a great established neighbourhood? Check out Kelowna's Crawford Estates, one of Kelowna's most recognized established neighbourhoods.
Charm and Character. Resale homes are often oozing with character. Whether it is the hand-planed woodwork, the innate exterior façades, or one-of-a-kind floor plans it is undeniably easy to fall in love with the charm of a resale home.
Buyer's Tip: Love charm and character? Check out Kelowna's Abbott Street area. Here you will find original homes on unique lots close to the waterfront.
Large Yards with Mature Trees and Vegetation. When you are looking for resale homes in Kelowna, the one thing you will notice is how incredible the yards can be when they have had the time to mature. While new construction neighbourhoods in Kelowna have trees and vegetation, they just haven't be around long enough for those beautiful maple and willow trees to grow up. Resale homes in Kelowna have some of the most beautiful outdoor space simply because they have been around long enough for the flora to grow!
Buyer's Tip: Looking for gorgeous yards? Check out properties in the Lake Country area. A community full of farmers, orchardists, and gardeners, there are some spectacular and meticulously planned lots particularly in this area.
Location, location, location.. Resale homes were built first, so it only makes sense that they are the closest to all of the fun! Whether you are looking to live within walking distance to the shores of the Okanagan Lake, close to downtown for an easy commute, or close to great shopping, resale homes will be what get you there.
Buyer's Tip: Looking for homes that are close to it all? Check out homes in Glenmore. With their amazing central location, you can get to the beach, Orchard Park, Knox Mountain, or downtown in under 10 minutes, no matter which direction you go!
Green Commuting. Let's face it, it doesn't matter if you try Springfield Road, Harvey Avenue, or Enterprise Way, you will be stuck in traffic at some point. Green commuting is becoming a big thing in our city, and to get access to regular bus routes, bike paths, or greenways, buying resale homes are often your best bet.
Buyer's Tip: Looking to go green? Kelowna's Lower Mission homes have access to some of the cities best city trails, bus routes, and best of all, it's flat!
Little Maintenance. Newly constructed homes are meant to last for a while, which includes everything from the roof to the hot water tank. New home owners do not expect to replace many of these things, at least not for the next 10 to 20 years. This gives you the freedom to just move into your home without worrying about upgrading or maintaining it from the start.
Buyer's Tip: Looking for move-in ready homes? Check out all of the new move-in ready homes popping up all throughout Black Mountain!
Energy Efficient. Home builders and developers in Kelowna are very conscious about increasing energy efficiencies in the homes they build. For you this means big savings on your utility bills - energy efficient appliances, windows, walls, and ceilings will all help keep you warmer in the winter and cooler in the summer.
Buyer's Tip: Builders in Kelowna's Upper Mission area have some of the most innovative ideas in enery efficient homes!
Modern Conveniences. New homes in Kelowna come with all of the modern conveniences you would expect. Built-in dishwashers, high-efficiency washers and dryers, new fridges, convenient ovens are all standard. But some homes are including smart home technology, usb plugs in the kitchen, pre-wired for fiber, workout spaces, lavish master suites, wine rooms - the creative list of things these homes are including is incredible!
Buyer's Tip: Incredible modern conveniences are the standard for new homes in Kelowna. Be sure to check out the incredible things showing up in West Kelowna homes.
Warranties. New homes give you peace of mind knowing that there are some guarantees of service. From builders warranties to appliance warranties, knowing that the builders and manufacturers are standing behind their products is a huge initial benefit to buying a new home in Kelowna.
Buyer's Tip: Big things are happening in this little town. Peachland is attracting some of the most reputable builders from around the country. Be sure to check out their newest developments.
Great Average Square Footage. The cute little wartime houses of the 1940s are charming, but so hard to raise a family of four in. New homes tend to have larger square footage, and if they can't build out they build up. This gives you room to grow your family or think about converting the lower level to a mortgage helper.
Drawbacks of Buying an Older Home in Kelowna
More Maintenance. Older homes can have a lot more upfront maintenance than their newer counterparts. Roof repairs, window renewals, furnace replacements can all add up quickly. One thing that Kelowna resale homebuyers often face is having to add air-conditioning, something many older homes are not equipped with, and something that is necessary between our 35° C heat and smoky skies.
Smaller Closets, Storage Space, and Garage. Older homes were built during times when we just had less stuff. When you are buying a resale home in Kelowna be sure that the kitchen has enough storage, your master bedroom closet has enough room, and that the garage can fit what you need it to.
Can Be More Expensive. Resale homes in Kelowna are often more expensive to operate until you can update them to be more efficient. This means higher bills for heating and cooling throughout the year, higher costs to operate appliances and more money into water usage.
Might Require Updates. Beyond higher utility bills, sometimes older homes need to be brought up to code. Whether it is making the deck strong enough, ensuring the wiring is safe, or that the foundation is solid are all things that can come up. If you are thinking of remodeling.
Drawbacks of Buying an New Home in Kelowna
Immature Neighbourhood.. Living in a new neighborhood can be exciting, but it can also be frustrating. The ongoing construction and development, waiting for roads and sidewalks to be completed, or waiting for the amenities to be built can take time and patience. It takes time for neighborhoods to mature.
Less Character. New homes in Kelowna are stunning and there are so many different styles to choose from. But what they often lack is a uniqueness and character from the house next door.
Immature Landscaping. It can take a long time for trees and shrubs to grow enough to provide shade and ambience in your outdoor space. If you live on a lot with several trees, keep in mind that cherry trees take 7-10 years to reach full size, maple trees can take 20-30.
House Settling. It doesn't matter what type on soil you are on, new houses settle. This can cause cracks in foundation, walls, ceilings, doorways, and driveways. Some of these may be covered under a builder's warranty, but not always. The summer time is a busy time for concrete specialists in Kelowna, and repairs can sometimes take months to happen.
Longer Commutes. New neighborhoods are getting further and further away from Kelowna's downtown core, which can add a lot of time onto your commutes. Factor in the limited arteries through the city, you can spend much more time in your car and on the road.
Buying a new home in Kelowna is a matter of choosing what home ownership looks like to you. Whether you choose a resale home or a new home, be sure to consider all of the factors to find the right home for you. At CENTURY 21 Assurance Realty, we are your Kelowna real estate specialists and are here to help you navigate through questions like this and more. Contact us today.