A Guide to New Build homes

new-build-circleNew build homes are attractive to buyers across Scotland – from first-time buyers to families, to those looking for somewhere to spend their retirement. It’s not the sort of purchase that you make regularly, so s1homes has put together this handy guide to help you through the process.

Why choose a new build home?

There are many advantages to choosing a new build home over an older property.

  • Everything in the property is brand new. It should be in move in condition with no decorating and minimal DIY required
  • You’re unlikely to need to make any repairs within the first few years
  • Energy efficiency and fire safety standards will be high
  • You may be able to choose fixtures and fittings while the property is being built, or negotiate with the seller on some items
  • New build homes come with a 10 year warranty (guarantee)

Where do I find new build homes?

New build property developers advertise on s1homes.com. There are over 1200 new homes all over Scotland from developers such as Ogilvie Homes, County Estates, Barratt Homes, Stuart Milne and many more.

Viewing new build homes

For developments that are already built, the process is similar to any other type of property. You will contact the seller and arrange a time to visit and be shown round. However, if the development is in progress, or still in the planning stages, you may visit a show home – a property already completed that is similar to the one you’re interested in. There may be other people visiting at the same time and an appointment is not always necessary. You might also be able to see an artist’s impression of how the property is expected to look. It’s important to consider if building works will be continuing around you if you were to move in, or if there are further plans for the area surrounding the development you are interested in.

Buying a new build property

Some of the buying process is the same – you will need to work out what you can afford, arrange a mortgage and appoint a solicitor to make an offer. New builds are usually sold at fixed price, however, some new home developers offer incentives such as part exchange or a contribution towards your deposit. They may also participate in the Scottish Government’s Help-to-Buy Scheme. Each developer has different offers so it’s best to check what applies to the area or development that you’re interested in.

New homes are often advertised during the planning and building phases so there are different options:

  • Buy a completed new home
  • Buy a home that is in the process of being built
  • Buy a home that has been planned but has not yet been started. This is known as buying ‘off plan’

Buying ‘off plan’

Is where this purchase of a new build is particularly different from an older property. Because your property is not yet built you will need to get a completion date from the developer. If this is not written into your contract as a condition of the sale, there is the possibility that this may be delayed. Once contracts are agreed, a deposit will be paid and the agreement with the builder becomes legally binding. Your property will be inspected before completion to check that it meets the required standards and issue a note to your solicitor on satisfactory completion to allow mortgage funds to be released.

Inspections and snagging

It is a good idea to do a snagging inspection, or pay a professional company to carry this out for you. This is an inspection of the home and reports any flaws that the developer should fix. If you are doing this yourself make sure you have a checklist so you know what to look for and ideally carry it out before completion to allow time for repairs. It can still be done within the first two years of the warranty. There is more information at the NHBC website.

To search new build homes in Scotland, search s1homes.com

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