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Old 03-08-2009, 09:23 PM
 
213 posts, read 709,645 times
Reputation: 136

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I posted this in Kentucky forum also:


We finally made the decision to move back after three years up in Western NY.

Just started looking at home builders and have been in contact with Fischer. I can't seem to find any thing on the internet as to the quality of their homes. Also tried to find comments under the Better Business Bureau, but didn't find anything either...

Does any body have any experience with them that could give me an idea if they are a good builder to build with. I know they are a fairly popular builder in N.KY...we're thinking of going with one of their pre-designed mid $200k models...

We like Drees also, but they aren't as predominant in the area we want to be in. If I could afford Thornewilde I would consider them though..

Thanks
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Old 03-09-2009, 12:13 AM
 
10,139 posts, read 22,404,584 times
Reputation: 8239
I know Fischer Homes well but not as a homeowner. Kind of hard to imagine Fischer Homes not being accredited by the BBB isn't it?

This is the time to hire a buyer's real estate agent. There are several posting here but they are not supposed to troll for customers. You can read between the lines. It won't cost you anything because Fischer Homes will pay the agent a co-op fee and they won't deduct it from the home pricing anyway. They should, but they won't.

So you get your own agent on their dime.

Big issue nowadays is that builders like Drees (not seen this with Fischer) just decide to give up on a subdivision, pay the penalty to the developer for their lot pickup schedule default and walk away. A friend of mine lives in a subdivision where he is the only house on the street and the rest is mud and has been for more than a year.

You are in the driver's seat. Buy carefully and drive a really hard bargain.
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Old 03-09-2009, 06:25 PM
 
Location: Cincinnati
13 posts, read 60,694 times
Reputation: 16
There was a big stink a few years ago about a mold problem with Fischer Homes. You may want to search newspaper or TV archives.
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Old 03-09-2009, 07:11 PM
 
213 posts, read 709,645 times
Reputation: 136
Thanks..

For those that know...how much can you negotiate prices with a builder? say you want "x" number of upgrades and they quote you the price. Is the buyer usually able to say "give it to me for this amount"?


Also how about building areas... We can build the same house in 2 seperate areas. One area is about $30-40K more for the basic home. In the current market, would a builder be willing to build the house in the pricier area for the same $$ as the lesser subdivision?

Thanks
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Old 03-09-2009, 07:30 PM
 
10,139 posts, read 22,404,584 times
Reputation: 8239
Quote:
Originally Posted by sick of the winter View Post
Thanks..

For those that know...how much can you negotiate prices with a builder? say you want "x" number of upgrades and they quote you the price. Is the buyer usually able to say "give it to me for this amount"?


Also how about building areas... We can build the same house in 2 seperate areas. One area is about $30-40K more for the basic home. In the current market, would a builder be willing to build the house in the pricier area for the same $$ as the lesser subdivision?

Thanks
At your price point, the builders are already pretty competitive. They know you are paying a whole lot of attention to "price per square foot." They want to make their margins back on upgrades which will have a higher markup.

Also, the builders at this price point can be pretty rigid on the basic house price because they build the same house over and over and its easy for your agent to look up how much they discounted the house on last week's sale. A substantial discount on one house can be a price reduction if everyone asks for the same discount. FYI, a couple thousand on the house is no problem and you might get a 1% reduction from the realtors. The options will have a markup of 20-50% so watch yourself there.

A typical perk is an interest rate buy-down because it polls well and projects well. A .5% buy-down costs the builder 1% of the loan amount. At your price point that is less than $2000, but when you compare your payment it will look like 10,000 in house price discount. Go to a mortgage calculator and see for yourself.

The best value you will find is in a spec house which has already been built and is in a builder's inventory. Every builder is being asked (told) by their bank to reduce inventory of existing homes. Also, what you see is what you get, so you don't have to worry about all the standard features and substitutions. That's the way I'd go.

Also, unless in distress, builders will not build a cheap house in their premium neighborhood because it degrades the price of all future houses. The only way to do this is to have your own lot and that entails much more than I can help you with here.
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Old 03-12-2009, 01:05 PM
 
3,750 posts, read 10,201,548 times
Reputation: 6560
That big of a price difference between developments is usually due to an intrinsic difference in the price of the lot or land between the developments/developers.

You can negotiate a lot within the price of the house. You may be much more hamstrung in negotiating the price of the land. Usually the builder signs a deal with the developer to sell lots for a specific price, often the developers will not compromise. Since the market is changing you may get some concessions, but the price of the land may be difficult for you to affect.

Price of the land aside, we totalled up everything we wanted, then told the developer the price we were willing to pay (It was roughly a 7% break on what the price would have been if we were paying full list) - and they met it.

The catch was - of course - we had to use their lender. As they were offering a good fixed rate, that was no problem.

There is definitely room to negotiate, but sometimes not everything is negotiable! Good luck!!
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Old 03-14-2009, 12:01 AM
 
213 posts, read 709,645 times
Reputation: 136
thanks for the info..I agree that using their lender may not be a bad idea.. Their lender was/is offering 3.99% to qualified buyers..We have near or above 800 fica scores, unfortunately we're looking at only 10% down. Hopefully that won't hinder us.
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Old 03-14-2009, 06:49 PM
 
Location: Bridgetown, Ohio
526 posts, read 1,259,436 times
Reputation: 144
Default Why?

Sure you have to build a new house? With the large inventory of existing houses why would you want to go through all the hassle of building one?
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Old 04-08-2009, 12:13 PM
 
213 posts, read 709,645 times
Reputation: 136
I've been thinking that same thing recently...I have seen some great homes in Treetops and Thornewild, that would be in our price range.Or atleast closer to it.. Problem is finding a home that meets all of our criteria..Like gourmet kitchens, finished basements, nice master bath..etc..
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Old 04-08-2009, 03:39 PM
 
10,139 posts, read 22,404,584 times
Reputation: 8239
Quote:
Originally Posted by wilson1010 View Post


The best value you will find is in a spec house which has already been built and is in a builder's inventory. Every builder is being asked (told) by their bank to reduce inventory of existing homes. Also, what you see is what you get, so you don't have to worry about all the standard features and substitutions. That's the way I'd go.
The finished basement is no problem. The builder can finish the basement on any spec house. The value is circa $20k with no amenities (like media room, wet bar, etc.) beyond a half bath. So, it would make a great bargaining point since it has a value to you of $20k but will only cost the builder $10-15k to finish it.

Find that perfect house and ask them to throw in the finished basement to make the deal.
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