BUYING EXISTING OR NEW HOMES

WE ARE THE LONDON MARKET EXPERTS ON EXISTING & NEW HOMES

What are the pros and cons of buying an existing versus a new home? Independently of whether you’re a first-time buyer or not, there are a few things to consider.

The biggest divider in property buyers in London is the option to buy a new development, potentially off-plan, versus buying an established house built in the last century. The old debate between modern new properties, versus old homes that have passed the test of time. Whether you’re a first-time buyer or not, there are a few things to consider.

NEW PROPERTIES

PROS FOR BUYING A NEW PROPERTY
  • There is no chain of buyers above you, hence you’ll be the first owner ever, taking advantage of a fresh home.

  • Fresh paintwork, kitchens or bathrooms hence very little upgrading work necessary, latest design and technology, even gyms or concierge.

  • They tend to comply with the latest regulations around insulation and energy efficiency, hence you will have relatively low bills.

  • Usually new builds have incentives to buy, with schemes like Help-to-Buy or Shared Ownership or buy off-plan and save some cash.
CONS FOR BUYING A NEW PROPERTY
  • There are usually delays on completion dates, so you might not move in when you planned.

  • Even if it looks modern, sometimes the quality lacks; have a snagging survey as soon as possible for some reassurance.

  • A lot of new builds are sold on a leasehold, rather than a freehold; it’s important you understand the costs, charges or limitations.

  • It will probably bring back more cash on re-sale if you keep it for longer term, as buyers will look for a new build instead of a couple year old build.

EXISTING PROPERTIES

PROS FOR BUYING AN EXISTING PROPERTY
  • More flexibility to put your own stamp on it, since it will probably need a bit of work anyway, and hence increase its value.

  • Existing homes have a bit more of a ‘personality’ such as a Georgian or Victorian home.

  • Existing neighbours that you could liaise with to find out about the area, who also have built a sense of community.

  • You have tangible expectations with an existing property, rather than buying off-plan and hoping it will turn out as you imagine.
CONS FOR BUYING AN EXISTING PROPERTY
  • There are chains of buyers before you and hence consider if you’ll have to deal with the previous owner and any property chain involved.

  • Often, you will want to redecorate a tired bathroom so these decisions should be budgeted for before putting an offer in.

  • Lack in energy efficiency, with older insulation technologies, Victorian windows, etc. could result in slightly higher bills.

  • You will probably need to create a maintenance plan, as some features will need attention as soon as you move in.

AREAS COVERED

Ilford

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Finsbury Park

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Bethnal Green

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Canary Wharf

2 Listings

Stratford

1 Listing

Stanmore

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