The Pros and Cons of Being the First Buyer in a New Neighborhood

You’ve been looking at new homes and your favorite happens to be the first in a neighborhood that has plans for 19 more. You must ask yourself, is this a good idea or a bad one?  In this case, it’s always best to make a list of what’s important to you in a neighborhood and list the pros and cons to help make the decision.

Pros

  • There won’t be a Homeowner Association (HOA), or the associated HOA fees, until there are more houses/neighbors in the community.
  • You won’t have neighbors for a while. This is a pro if you value your privacy.
  • You will likely get the lowest and best price and greater potential for equity growth, as the properties become more valuable over time.
  • You will have the pick of location. And it’s all about location, location, location. Homes that don’t back up to busy streets or vacant lots are preferred.
  • You will likely be able to voice your opinions to the builder about how you’d like the neighborhood to progress, such as preferring a six-foot fence to a three-foot fence.
  • Since the trade professionals are already there, it will be easier, and more consistent with your house design, to hire the cabinet guy for built-ins.

Related: Life Expectancy of Household Appliances and Other Things You Rely On Most

Cons

  • You will be living in a construction zone for years to come. They can be noisy, dirty and hazardous – – mostly to car tires.
  • There is uncertainty over when the construction will be complete, if ever. What if the market crashes again and the neighborhood doesn’t get finished?
  • You may not get the offered amenities, such as a community pool and tennis courts, until most of the homes are sold.
  • You won’t have neighbors for a while. This is a con if you love the feel of a neighborhood and want to live in a close-knit community.
  • You will likely not have big trees or lush landscaping. Most new communities are clear-cut before construction begins.
  • Since you’ve purchased your home, you’d prefer for your neighbors to be homebuyers, too, as opposed to renters. If houses sit too long, the builder/developer may resort to leasing.
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