A new build home vs. a period home

We are often asked by our family home buying clients “what is better to buy, a “new build” (modern) home or period home”?. It’s not easy to answer as no two clients have the same brief for their property search. 

Clients generally fall into one of three categories.

1.A Modern Property: (no more than five years old)

These clients are all about the now, proximity to schools, floorplan flexibility heating/cooling, substantial natural light, car parking etc.  

2.A Period Property: 

These clients are more focused on capital growth, be inner city, proximity to schools, quality streets, and neighbours (also in a period style). A less than perfect floor plan is ok, average or above-average land content for the precinct, close to public transport/shops, and may consider a renovation in the future.

3.A Renovated Period Property. 

These clients want the best of points 1 and 2. An inner-city property with a period façade, renovated interior, and landscaped gardens. A modern floorplan seamlessly connected to an outdoor entertaining area. An average or above-average land content for the precinct, and close to public transport/shops.

The choice between one or the other depends mostly on the individual’s emotional, financial and family needs. We know from historical data that period properties have held their value better than any other property type. 

Does it mean that buying a new property is a bad idea? No, you have to be more careful about what you buy and look for and incorporate as many of the following in your search criteria.

  • A timeless façade 
  • Will the façade still appeal to buyers in 25 years 
  • Ideally architecturally designed by a renowned architect 
  • Distinctive timeless exterior features 
  • A functional floorplan, taking into consideration that two home offices may be the future norm
  • Excellent connectivity between zones, in particular, the outside garden/pool area
  • Natural light throughout
  • Spacious walk-in robes 
  • Quality everything 
  • Perhaps even a basement with an underground car park

If it’s a well-designed house with the above elements, in 25 years a “classic new build” house will always have added value in addition to the value of the land only. For example, modernising surfaces can easily be achieved in 25 years, but trying to incorporate the “classic” elements in the future may not be achievable.

Conversely, in 25 years, an inferior “new build” that lacks most of these elements may even be demolished – with all the value in the land only.

So our advice is that if it’s a new build you are looking for its better to buy an architect-designed “new classic” than a house that may have only land value in 25 years.

If you are unsure about buying “new-build vs period home” and need some guidance, call Guy or Geoff at ela Property Advocates. Guy Angwin. 0412 022 998 or Geoff Briscoe 0418 740 351. http://www.elapropertyadvocates.com.