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Old 12-06-2018, 09:15 AM
 
Location: Just south of Denver since 1989
10,705 posts, read 28,659,550 times
Reputation: 6882

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1. Know that Canceling your contract will likely mean forfeiting your earnest money.

2. Only get the options and upgrades that you cannot do later for your new house.

3. The builder operate on a cost plus profit basis so if you don’t need the option or the upgrade and you can do it more cost-efficient later then do it some of the things that are not able to do later effectively or things like electrical so if you want ceiling fan outlets or light fixtures in all the bedrooms do that now also get the best carpet pad that you can afford you can likely just upgrade your carpet later like 3 to 5 years seven years, and not need to upgrade the pad.
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Old 12-06-2018, 09:20 AM
 
2,845 posts, read 2,862,201 times
Reputation: 3298
I agree about the carpet pad but for a different reason. I believe it will extend the life of the carpet. I can't see leaving a several year old carpet pad in place if you later upgrade the carpet.
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Old 12-06-2018, 01:41 PM
 
5,022 posts, read 2,254,281 times
Reputation: 12821
Not this specific builder.
Can share what my associate did to keep his dream home and his bank account.
He got the bare minimum. Even paid them $200 to not put in the kitchen cabinets. Sounds silly til you understand his Dad made custom cabinets . His younger brother owned a landscape business so he helped with the outdoor design...

Some parts of the builder contract couldn't be negotiated ...codes ...fees.

what could be though was the products. ..flooring,fixtures,tiles,appliances,doors, windows. Gates,fences...walkway,patio.
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Old 12-06-2018, 01:43 PM
 
Location: Chicagoland
1,591 posts, read 1,475,788 times
Reputation: 1425
Quote:
Originally Posted by Slytrix View Post
Most new home sales are experiencing a slow down and are offering incentives to purchase. The homebuilders don't normally discount the price but will often give a credit towards upgraded flooring, refrigerator, blinds or something. If you have already signed on the dotted line about the best you can do is go to the design meeting and pick out what you want and then wait for the price and freak out on the designer then afterwards call your new home salesperson and tell them you can't afford the house with the options so you will have to cancel your contract. See where it goes from there
I am seeing discounts lately too, though I agree builders seem to absolutely refuse to discount the base price. So I've found it's better to try to negotiate on lot premiums, closing costs, and/or upgrades beyond the house/structure. Best of luck to anyone else going through this.

And I would NOT buy a new build without employing my own inspector doing 3-5 inspections during construction. Money well spent.

I did a new construction home in the early 90's, the mistakes we caught (and had corrected) were shocking!
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Old 12-06-2018, 01:50 PM
 
Location: Chicagoland
1,591 posts, read 1,475,788 times
Reputation: 1425
Quote:
Originally Posted by turf3 View Post
Make sure that BEFORE YOU SIGN ANYTHING you have an EXACT understanding of what it is you're buying, and the EXACT price.
I just got a line by line price for a new construction build in NC with all the upgrades (10 pages total), but it was like pulling teeth, and some other builders wouldn't do it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MikeJaquish View Post
How many national builders have you built with and how often have you succeeded with them with this approach?

But, yeah. The process is awful.
+1. I'm finding the process awful, with or without a realtor. Haggling over a new car is much easier...

Quote:
Originally Posted by turf3 View Post
In the subdivision I'm talking about, some people down the street came to closing and found a $40,000 surprise! (The house was probably around $250,000.) That is not going to happen on my watch, thank you very much.
The neighborhood I am presently looking at is homes "starting mid 300's" but the finished homes are mostly $450-550K. The builders rep admitted they'd seen upgrades ranging from $10K to $125K, but said $30-40K is typical. They went on to tell us the folks who added $125K were required to put up big earnest money, non refundable, and told the buyers point blank the house would not appraise. So they could walk away at the end when it didn't appraise - if they wanted to forfeit their initial deposit and additional earnest money. I don't blame the builder BTW.
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Old 12-06-2018, 02:15 PM
 
9,496 posts, read 11,342,405 times
Reputation: 12702
Quote:
Originally Posted by davebarnes View Post
You are.
You either accept it or find a small builder.
Which brings up a whole new set of obstacles:

1. Will the builder be able to finish the job? Will he go out of business, get behind schedule?
2. Who can you complain to when it is finished? Nat'l builders have service depts to handle warranty issues, small guys don't.
3. Small builders don't have the economies of scale that a Nat'l one does so the labor/materials probably costs more. Nat'l surely overcharges for everything so the line by line costs might not show savings.
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Old 12-06-2018, 03:01 PM
 
3,780 posts, read 1,620,715 times
Reputation: 10479
. The builders rep admitted they'd seen upgrades ranging from $10K to $125K, but said $30-40K is typical.


I'm not talking about upgrades where you know the cost. I'm talking about them going to closing and finding out they were on the hook for a large amount more money than they thought.


If I find myself engaged in buying a pig in a poke and every vendor requires me to buy the selfsame pig in the selfsame poke, I'm going to opt out.
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Old 12-06-2018, 03:07 PM
 
Location: Cary, NC
31,838 posts, read 55,826,987 times
Reputation: 30520
Quote:
Originally Posted by turf3 View Post
. The builders rep admitted they'd seen upgrades ranging from $10K to $125K, but said $30-40K is typical.


I'm not talking about upgrades where you know the cost. I'm talking about them going to closing and finding out they were on the hook for a large amount more money than they thought.


If I find myself engaged in buying a pig in a poke and every vendor requires me to buy the selfsame pig in the selfsame poke, I'm going to opt out.
I have closed quite a few new construction properties with buyers, from regional builders to local custom builders to national cookie-cutters.
Not once in 13+ years have I seen huge charges at closing that materialized out of nowhere.

It may be hard to get documentation of costs before contract, particularly if the builder has a complex design center system.
But, when using a design center, pricing is nailed down prior to commencement of construction.
So, I am very curious how your neighbors got themselves into that jam, and with what sort of builder and product.

Custom build, with an architect and an independent builder, and addons for change orders or cost-plus agreements, perhaps?
But, a Pulte-type cookie cutter? That is hard to imagine.
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Old 12-06-2018, 03:26 PM
 
3,780 posts, read 1,620,715 times
Reputation: 10479
Quote:
Originally Posted by MikeJaquish View Post
I have closed quite a few new construction properties with buyers, from regional builders to local custom builders to national cookie-cutters.
Not once in 13+ years have I seen huge charges at closing that materialized out of nowhere.

It may be hard to get documentation of costs before contract, particularly if the builder has a complex design center system.
But, when using a design center, pricing is nailed down prior to commencement of construction.
So, I am very curious how your neighbors got themselves into that jam, and with what sort of builder and product.

Custom build, with an architect and an independent builder, and addons for change orders or cost-plus agreements, perhaps?
But, a Pulte-type cookie cutter? That is hard to imagine.
Well, they tried to get us to sign the contract before giving us a complete price. We refused. I guess the other people didn't. We got the total price, thought about it overnight, concluded it was a "go", and signed the contract.


I go back to the fundamentals of having money and spending money: always know what it is you're buying and how much it's going to cost before committing yourself to buy it.
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Old 12-06-2018, 06:58 PM
 
52 posts, read 21,117 times
Reputation: 74
My former neighbor purchased a home in Leesburg last year, which was build by Pulte Homes. After his move I asked about the home and he responded, "You know what they say about Pulte Homes; the problem with Pulte Homes is they're Pulte Homes". Hi house was a formal model and it's about 25 yrs. old but he probably put close $100k in updates. There were many serious issues, including leaking roof, which wasn't build properly, so he had to replace the room, windows and many other issues that weren't done properly. He did put in a new kitchen and other cosmetic things but there's no doubt that he was not no happy with the way the home was build. After speaking with him about all the different problems, I don't think I would purchase a Pulte Home. Perhaps they're construction is much better now. I did visit a Pulte model recently and on the surface I liked the model, but I would still have my apprehensions.
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