Upgrades to Consider When Building a New Home

As I mentioned in my last post, when building a new home, the decisions seem endless. Many times it can be difficult to determine how to best spend your upgrade dollars and where to invest a little extra versus scale back to fit your budget.

When making selections and choosing your upgrades, focus on items that are more "permanent" in your home. I use permanent in a loose sense, but the following items are areas you may want to consider investing a little extra in because they will be much more difficult or costly to upgrade in the future. While I always recommend exercising good judgment and staying within your budget, it may be valuable to spend money in these areas to get it right the first time around, particularly in today's low interest rate environment:  

  • Kitchens and bathrooms - Kitchen and bathroom remodels can be some of the most expensive updates you can make in a home. I would recommend picking something style-wise that will stand the test of time - both functionally and visually. This goes for cabinetry, countertops, hardware and fixtures.
  • Structural elements - Think floor plan, windows, beams to eliminate poles, architectural interest, additional outlets, etc. Things that are the core structure of your home that may require more extensive construction down the road in order to change/add.
  • Flooring selection - These may be something you feel you can easily change, but down the road, you will do everything to avoid it. Don't skimp on these items, particularly if they add to the functionality of your home.
  • Trim and moldings - If you have the option to upgrade your trim and/or moldings, it will be to your advantage to do so in the home building stage.
  • Lot location - You could build the most perfect-to-you home, but if it's not in a location where you want to live or where you spend most of your time, you likely won't be happy in the long-run. Consider your lifestyle, job location, school district, etc. before picking the right lot to build your new home.

Remember, you don't have make all your upgrades immediately - especially if you plan to live in your new home for the long term. Therefore, if you need to scale back on some decisions, choose those items that will be easier and more cost-effective to upgrade on your own down the road {light fixtures, wall color, closet organizers, etc.}. 

Lastly, be sure to make upgrades that will make YOU happy. Remember, you're the one living in your new home!