When it comes to purchasing a home, is a new home better than an old one? It depends. There are advantages (and disadvantages) to both, so let’s take a quick look at some of the advantages and drawbacks of new versus old, starting with older homes. These are not hard and fast rules but are typical differences between new and older homes and something to consider when looking at homes for sale in Fairfield or homes for sale in Vacaville.
Land in California used to be a lot cheaper than it is now, so the lots and yards of older homes tend to be larger than they are today. Older homes tend to be single-story, as well. Garages were built as separate buildings or were attached to the homes rather than today’s typical construction with the garage located under living areas, as the larger lots could accommodate the additional buildings.
Building materials used in older homes often included real hardwood floors or framing made from 2”x6” redwood rather than the 2”x4” pine typically used today. These established neighborhoods often have long-term residents with the homes passed down through generations, with mature trees lining the streets.
As you might expect, older homes tend to need more maintenance than newer homes. In some cases, expensive upgrades may be necessary, such as electrical wiring or plumbing. Unless previously upgraded, older homes tend to be less energy-efficient, increasing heating and cooling costs. Compared to newer homes, they are usually smaller in size, even with being built on larger lots. Garages, too, were often designed for one car as multi-vehicle families were not as prevalent as today. Some older, older homes still have carriage houses rather than garages!
Newer homes for sale in Fairfield or homes for sale in Vacaville usually require less maintenance than older homes - you rarely have to worry about a failing roof, a bad water heater, or worn-out carpet for several years. In California, home builders also must provide a 10-year warranty to buyers. Over the years, construction codes and regulations have changed and improved, and newer homes are required to be more energy-efficient, with better insulation, dual-pane windows, and more efficient built-in appliances like dishwashers, microwave ovens, and air conditioners.
Built to modern codes, newer homes have safer electrical systems, water-conserving plumbing, and improved earthquake standards, among other things. Modern homes tend to be bigger in size, often over 2,000 square feet. Compare this to most older homes that are under 1,500 square feet, or even under 1,000 square feet in size (even as family sizes have gotten smaller over the years).
There are some drawbacks to newer homes to take into consideration, too. For instance, you will often find newer homes packed closely together, with 2,500 square foot homes being built on 2,000 square foot lots. As the cost of land has grown, builders have built up. Your windows may be just a few feet from your neighbor’s. Yards, both front and back, can be “postage stamp” sized plots with little grass or vegetation. Trees are immature, requiring years to grow enough to provide shade and beauty.
Still can’t decide which is best for you? With access to hundreds of listings, our agents can show you homes new and old to help you determine the best fit for your needs. Give us a call today to speak with one of our experienced agents who can show you the important differences and advantages in choosing between newer and older homes for sale in Fairfield or homes for sale in Vacaville.