Surprise: These 5 Things May Not Come With Your New-Construction Home

By: , Contributor

Published on: Feb 19, 2020

Buying new construction often means having to pay for finishing touches yourself.

Buying new construction has its share of benefits. Not only does it mean being privy to a brand-new space that no one has lived in before, but often, you get the option to customize that space in accordance with your preferences. Want a double oven in your kitchen? An oversized tub in your bathroom? When you're building a home from scratch, those options exist.

Even if you're not buying a new-construction home that's being built from the ground up before your eyes, you can still benefit from a pristine, untouched space that's yours to claim. But if there's one drawback to buying new construction, it's the added cost involved. Not only will you pay a premium for being a home's first owner, but there are certain finishing touches for that home you'll likely need to pay for yourself, as they won't be included in your property's purchase price. Here are a few to keep on your radar.

1. Lighting

Many new-construction homes come with basic lighting -- but if you want extra lighting (meaning more than just a single fixture or bulb in larger spaces, like your living room), that cost may be on you. Furthermore, the lighting fixtures your builders provide may be bottom-of-the-barrel and not so nice looking, in which case you'll likely feel compelled to upgrade.

2. Window treatments

Many people who buy new construction are surprised to learn that blinds and shades aren't included in the deal. And, depending on the window treatments you choose, you could easily spend $100 to $200 per window for coverings -- more if you have irregular-size windows.

3. Bathroom fixtures

For a bathroom to be functional, it generally needs fixtures like a towel bar or hook, toilet paper holder, and mirror. But when you buy new construction, those items may not be present when you move in, which means you'll have to find and pay for them yourself.

4. Closet shelving

Storage is an important feature of any home, but even if your new-construction property offers a generous amount of closet space, you may be surprised to notice a glaring lack of shelving. In some cases, you might get just a single shelf for a walk-in closet or pantry, so prepare to cover the cost of more shelving on your own.

5. Landscaping

Your builders will probably put down grass seed for your new-construction home. But don't expect anything beyond that. If you want flowers, shrubs, or decorative features, that'll generally be on your own dime. The same holds true if you want a walkway anywhere in your yard.

Don't get caught off guard

When you stretch your budget to buy a new-construction home, the last thing you want to deal with is a host of added costs. To avoid that, review your contract carefully before moving forward so you understand exactly what is and is not included in your home's purchase price. Doing so will help you plan accordingly and avoid last-minute stress when you move in.

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