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Building vs. Buying a House: The Pros and Cons

The Managing Director of Buying Perth Real Estate, Clive Elliott, discusses who is ideally suited to the services of a buying agent, how a b

Most of us dream of our own space where we can relax and cultivate our own lifestyle. Owning a home is definitely a milestone in one’s life. But one of the questions often asked when deciding to obtain your dream home is: is it better to build a house from scratch or buy an existing property? Each has its own and disadvantages so here are the pros and cons of building a house vs. buying a house.

Building a House

Building a house from scratch means taking an empty piece of land and deciding on a lot of details for you to build your dream home. This can be exciting for some as it gives them a lot of control especially if they already have a dream house in mind. But there are also its pros and cons.

The Pros

If you are imaginative about your dream home and if you have a lot of time, building a house can be the perfect option for you. It will give you the freedom to decide on every detail, big or small, of your new home. If you are nitpicky and have very specific preferences on what you want in a home, it can be hard for you to find an existing property that will fulfill all your criteria. Customization is probably one of the greatest advantages of building a house from scratch.


Unlike ready-made houses, you get to personalize every aspect of your future home based on your needs and wants. If you want a basement, add it to your layout! Planning to have children in the future? Feel free to add extra bedrooms. Another great thing about customization is that you get to build a house that’s modern and more efficient by installing smart devices and energy-efficient fixtures. Also, with a newly-built house, you won’t have to worry about maintenance and renovation for a few years.

The Cons

While there are a lot of advantages in building a house from scratch, there are also some disadvantages that may highly affect your decision. Statistically, building a house costs more than purchasing an existing house. The costs can even be made more expensive because since owners have the freedom to customize things in their house, they tend to splurge and spend on things that they do not necessarily need.


Aside from the cost, building a house takes more time and effort as you need to decide on every detail by yourself. Even if you hire a team, you still need to do your research and decide for yourself. After all, you are the one who will be living in the house. The decision-making can further prolong the construction period. This could be a total disadvantage if you need to move in immediately. Lastly, unlike existing houses, the price for building a house is more difficult to negotiate.

Buying a House

Buying an existing house would be a more convenient option as it will save you a lot of time and effort. With the help of your trusted buyer’s agent, house-hunting will definitely be a breeze. To help you assess whether or not this option is perfect for you, take a look at its pros and cons.

The Pros

In an already existing house, you wouldn’t have to worry about the nitty-gritty of building a house. Unlike building from scratch, you wouldn’t need to purchase land, choose a home design, and take into account every detail because these have already been done for you. The house is already there, you just have to check it out and evaluate if it has everything on your checklist of what you’re looking for in a home.


If you don’t want to spend too much time stressing out on different details and don’t have much time to monitor the construction, it would be better to buy a house instead. Also, you have better chances of price negotiation with buying an existing house than when building one. If you need to move in as soon as possible, it would be more practical to purchase a house since you do not need to wait months for it to be constructed and you can just gradually upgrade it in the future depending on your budget.

The Cons

An existing house is probably older than a newly-built house. Hence, you might have to be concerned about possible maintenance issues. It would be best to seek help from a professional home inspector for a proper evaluation of the needed maintenance in your house. Also, when upgrading an existing house, you will have limited options for renovation as you cannot change the house drastically. If you want to have major changes, you might have to demolish a part of your house and reconstruct it, which beats the purpose of buying a house that’s already built.


© 2021 Clive Elliott

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