10 Tips for Buying a New Build Home in The Blue Mountains
Welcome to our website, Builds by the Bay. As the go-to local experts, we often get asked about The Blue Mountains areas up and coming new build pre-construction homes and the mystery behind the entire sales process. As a certified new home specialist, having my residential construction certification, and working alongside several local builders for the past 6 years, I am well versed in the new build process from both sides. For the better part of 4 years, I actively represented a few builders (sellers) and knew their process and how they work. For the past 2 years, I have been an independent agent who represents buyers. Playing for both sides gave me the unique ability to help manage the buying experience and selling expectations through education. With that in mind, I created this guide for you: 10 Tips for Buying a New Build Home in The Blue Mountains, or the Southern Georgian Bay area.
10 Tips for Buying a New Build Home in The Blue Mountains:
1. Find The Right Realtor®
My first tip for buying a new build home in The Blue Mountains is to start by finding the best real estate professional for the job. Having a local Realtor® who specializes in new-build pre-construction home sales will be able to offer insights to you that others simply won’t have. They will have their fingers on the pulse of where the new-build opportunities are. As a Blue Mountain local, I know the community, can offer guidance, advice, and may sometimes mediate between all parties involved in the build/sale. Take a look at our real estate interview questions blog, research your agent and check out their reviews from past clients. When you choose me for the job, you will be in wonderful hands. I have worked on new-build pre-construction homes since the beginning of my real estate journey 6 years ago. I have worked with 5 builders, sold 7 different subdivisions, and helped over 100 clients find their new home, building lot or new condominium.
2. Research The Area
Tip 2 for Buying a New Build Home in The Blue Mountains…Research the area you want to be in – When it comes to buying a home, you choose a home that fits your lifestyle. Therefore you should walk around the neighbourhood. Is it close to: your favourite shops, a good school, recreations you enjoy, a good grocery store and are there nice restaurants nearby? Maybe you prefer the quiet for a real getaway. Either way, drill down and find your bliss list.
3. Select Your Dream Lot
Pick a great lot! Some lots come at premium prices. This may be obvious, but you want to pick the perfect lot that suits your needs and your budget. How are the views? Will there be enough privacy? Where will the sunlight be at different times of the day? Drive-by or walking traffic? Is there street furniture on your lot? Up here in the blue mountains there are pretty big front yard setbacks and knowing you can fit 4 cars in the driveway is great for some, but for others knowing that is a lot of drive to shovel in the wintertime isn’t ideal!
4. Research The Builder
Tip 4 for Buying a New Build Home in The Blue Mountains is to research the builder and make sure the builder is reputable by looking them up. I have worked with many builders and can advise on who is reputable, provides quality builds, and the right community for you based on you and your families checklist of wants/needs.
5. Get Your Finances In Order
Understand what you will need as a deposit, financing a new build. Most builders require between 15-20% down in staggered payments. If it is a custom build you will be paying mile marker payments at pre-set agreed to terms. Also know that many builds take a year or more and that qualifying for a mortgage isn’t possible that far out. Some builders will ask that you provide something called a letter of comfort. This is merely a confirmation to the builder that you have the means to close on this purchase. Others will require a “pay as you go” as they build. Knowing what the builder wants in terms of payments will help you figure out financing for the build.
6. Set a Budget For Upgrades
Budget for upgrades – Knowing what is standard and what is extra is VERY important. Model homes that showcase a build rarely show any standard features. I often tell people a good rule of thumb when buying in a subdivision is to budget 20% of purchase price for upgrades… more if you plan a structural change or plan to finish the basement. Depending on your taste that 20% can be spent rather quickly just on a kitchen! Most people who venture down the new build path, myself included, are most excited to create with the designer that dream kitchen or bathroom! Know your budget and then let the designer know! I can help you with the top 5 upgrades I would choose if you let me come along to the design appointments.
7. Get Everything In Writing & Read Your Contracts
I am a strong believer in getting everything in writing that is why tip 7 for buying a new build home in The Blue Mountains is to ensure you read your contracts and get everything in writing!! Check with the developer about potential homeowners’ association (HOA) fees and rules. Know the local architectural covenants and read your contracts! You don’t want to buy and build your dream home only to find out afterwards that you cannot put up that fence, or you figure out that your HOA fees are more than your mortgage payments. BONUS: If you’ve purchased a new build that is registered with a Tarion Warranty – make sure you have your Tarion Warranty: Statement of Critical Dates noted in a calendar as well.
8. Watch The Progress
Drive by and watch the build progress. If you sign on with the Builds by the Bay team be sure to check out our social media, and Youtube channel for driving tour development updates. It is one of my favourite things to do as your boots on the ground Realtor.
Timing is everything. Therefore you need to consider what your time frame is. Are you flexible with moving dates? Are you looking for a few years down the line, or something more immediate? With new builds and customizations, there can be delays. Covid-19 has given us unprecedented delays due to work stoppage or having only 1 trade on the site at a time. The latest round of hits comes from supply chain issues. Check out our blog on the lumber prices rollercoaster for new home buyers. Appliances are back-ordered 6 months as of writing (January 2022).
If you want a home 6 months or sooner you will want to look at resale options with me. If you want a newer area resale home, please check out our popular neighbourhoods guide to see what Blue Mountain community best fits your needs.
Finally, tip 10 of 10 tips for buying a new build home in The Blue Mountains is… to know exactly what is covered by your warranty. When buying a new build home, the vendor/builder is registered with Tarion. Tarion administers the statutory warranty that comes with your newly built freehold home or Condo in Ontario and lasts 7 years from the date of the accepted offer. Going hand in hand with your warranty is another important tip of getting a pre-delivery inspection / final walkthrough. Having a final inspection is important to ensure there are no structural defects, no unauthorized substitutions, and that it’s fit for habitation. Learn all about the Tarion warranty, what is covered, and what I offer as your real estate agent in my blog post.
Buying a new build home in the Blue Mountains can be a daunting process, that is why we wanted to provide you with 10 Tips for Buying a New Build Home in The Blue Mountains. When you sign on to work with me, you can be confident in your new build buying decisions. The Builds by the Bay team is there for you every step of the way, answering any questions and checking in throughout the process as part of the full services that we offer. Want to be informed of any new developments that are coming in a certain area? (The Blue Mountains – Thornbury – Meaford – Collingwood – Owen Sound – Wasaga) Please check out our blogs, follow the links and let me know which area you are interested in and we will send developments your way!