Lintil | Home-Buying-Assistant - Post Thirteen

New Builds vs. Pre-Owned homes: How is the process different?

4 min read

From the graphic below you will note that there are 8 steps in the home-buying journey regardless of the fact you are buying a Pre-Owned property or a New Build property. Remember the sequence of the steps and when each service provider is required is slightly different.

Things to be aware of when buying a New Build vs a Pre-Owned home.
1. The Home-Buying Journey

It can look different depending on whether you are buying a New Build or a Pre-Owned home. While a lot of the services needed and processes followed are the same, the timelines follow separate patterns and it's important to be aware of what will be involved for your specific property. We have outlined the main differences in this article, so you can be fully informed about the home-buying process no matter what type of home you are purchasing.

2. Finding Your home

Usually when looking to buy a New Build home, the property has not been built yet (or at least is not finished). The homes are usually reserved and purchased from plans provided by the developer. You can find information about upcoming developments on and from estate agents. When you find a plan for a property that you would like to purchase, you can reserve it by paying a booking deposit that is usually a small percentage of the property price (the full 10% deposit is not due until later).This deposit is fully refundable until the contracts are signed. You will pay a booking deposit on a Pre-Owned property too. Unlike the Pre-Owned process, there is no bidding process to buy a New Build. It is first come first served, so you need to be ready to place an offer early to be accepted.

3. Your Solicitor and the Legal Process

Once you have reached the sale agreed step, no matter what type of home you are buying, you need to have a solicitor engaged. They will take care of the conveyancing process for you, communicate with the vendor and their solicitor on your behalf, and ensure the contracts are in order. In both cases, a loan offer will be required before the contracts can be signed. It is important to have a solicitor you trust as they will be advocating on your behalf.

4. Sale Agreed

For a New Build property you may have to wait several months for the property to be ready, the only thing to take care of in the meantime is the signing of the contracts. The contracts are usually signed 6-12 weeks after the booking deposit has been placed. You will pay the full 10% deposit at this point and it is non-refundable. The developer/estate agent will keep you updated as to when the property will be completed. If you are buying a Pre-Owned property this is a busy step. Before you sign contracts you must engage a surveyor and source your insurance quotes.

5. Snagger v Survey

A "New Build" will require a "snagger" to complete the home-inspection and a Pre-Owned property will require a "survey" of the property to take place. For each a chartered surveyor will complete the job.

6. Insurance

It is a good time to source home-insurance and mortgage protection insurance for a Pre-Owned property once you have reached the sale agreed step, that way you will have it in place when you are signing your contracts which is required. For a New Build property you will need your home insurance policy and your mortgage protection policy in place about 2 weeks before the drawdown of your mortgage.You can start looking for quotes once you have your contract signed and your house is under construction.

We have identified the 8 steps in each home-buying journey above, remember to sign up with Lintil and we will guide you through each step.