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Do I Build, or Do I Buy?

From buying an established home to building new or knocking down and building two, there’s a lot of decisions to weigh up as you embark on your journey to home ownership. Shelley Craft's diving into them below!

Episode 1: Shelley Craft Weighs in on the Build vs. Buy Debate

The Big Debate, Should You Buy or Build Your New Home?

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The road to home ownership is paved with a lot of questions, with one of the biggest being, should you buy an established home, build new, or knock-down and rebuild on your existing block?

Truth be told, there’s no one-size fits all approach when it comes to deciding on the right path for you. Everyone will have their own location, budget and lifestyle requirements, as well as different priorities and timelines that they’re working to.

Whether you’re looking to get your foot in the door with your first home, finally settle down into your forever home, or get ahead with an investment property, you’ll have very different needs from your friends and family, and the neighbours over the fence.

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Image: From an empty block of land to your very own tropical paradise. Explore the breathtaking Garner 25, on display at the Springfield Rise Estate, Spring Mountain, QLD.

At the end of the day, regardless of your decision, you’re about to embark on a daunting, but incredibly exciting journey. All of your hard-earned savings and years of hard work are about to pay off, and we’re here to help you make the right choice for you, your family and your future.

After all, we’re the Great Australian Builder, and over the last seven decades, our passion and dedication in helping more and more Australians get into their own home has been unwavering, and it’s only getting stronger from here.

So, if you feel yourself coming to a crossroads, toying with the idea of buying, building or knocking down and rebuilding, keep reading, as we’re walking you through all of the opportunities and obstacles, and perks and pitfalls below.

Weighing up the Benefits

of Buying Established or Building New

The House Hunt Begins

Where should you start?

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Image: Create a knock-out first impression with a light and airy entryway. As seen in our Haylett 28, on display at the Willowdale Estate, Leppington, NSW.

Firstly, if you’ve found yourself on the house hunt, congratulations! As that’s a big and exciting milestone in and of itself.

You’re probably in the middle of asking your mum and dad, aunts, uncles, close friends and colleagues for all of their tried and tested advice and pearls of wisdom when it comes to getting into your first home, or upgrading to your forever home.

It can be hard to know where to start, let alone knowing how to navigate brokers, government grants, auctions and contracts. Feeling overwhelmed yet? Don’t worry, you’re definitely not alone!

To get started, begin to visualise your new home and neighbourhood. One of the benefits of buying new, is that you can walk through and inspect any prospective home beforehand. Giving you an idea of the flow, dimensions and the placement of furniture.

But, you do have to be wary of all of the things that you don’t notice on these walk-throughs.

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Image: Get your dream bathroom right from the get-go. Explore this timeless, yet contemporary look in our Cleveland 37, on display at the Arise Estate, Rochedale, QLD.

In the glitz and excitement of an open home, you can be easily distracted from seeing the wear and tear inflicted by the decades of previous owners or tenants. Not to mention, when buying an established home that’s older, there’s always the risk of greater, unforeseen issues emerging later on down the track.

There’s a big difference between buying new and thinking all that’s needed is a fresh lick of paint, to only later find out that you need to install new plumbing and overhaul the electrical wiring.

If you are toying up with the idea of buying an older home with plans to renovate, keep in mind that any revamping ideas can be quickly derailed by mould, termite damage, harmful asbestos or even poorly built structural beams. All of which can lead to budget blowouts, financial stress and horror stories that are better left to reality TV.

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Image: Open plan living and cleverly zoned spaces are our bread and butter, as seen in our Stannis 38, on display in Grovedale, VIC.

If big renovations are needed, you’ll also need to decide if you’re going to tackle them room by room, or all at once. Renovating some rooms but not others can lead to a mix-match of old and new, producing a jolting effect as you walk through the home and affecting its resale value later on. While tackling the entire home at once can become incredibly disruptive, especially if you need to do full kitchen and bathroom renovations and knock down walls to achieve that highly sought-after, open plan living.

Before you know it, you’ll find that you’re left to juggle your usual 9-5 with the added stress of coordinating trades, fielding invoices and endless late nights ordering fittings and fixtures. We understand that this might not be up everyone’s alley, and that when you embark on your home ownership journey, you want to feel a sense of stability and certainty.

While buying new and moving in relatively straight away might provide you with a feeling of stability, in today’s competitive property market, you do have to be prepared to spend countless weekends at open homes, negotiating with agents and being outbid at auctions.

The Beauty of Building New

All of the reasons why building new might be the right choice for you

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Instead of facing the disappointment of countless open homes and auctions, you could spend your weekends visiting one of our 127, and counting, display homes around the country. By walking through a display with one of our New Home Specialists, you can start to visualise what you want your future home to look like.

They’ll sit down with you, listen to what you need in a home, and walk you through our range of floor plans, facades and popular structural options. Leaving no stone unturned.

Our top tip? Check out our virtual tours beforehand, so you can start to narrow down displays that you know will likely suit your personal style and floor plan requirements. Did we mention you can do this all from the comfort of your couch?

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Image: Our Gallery Consultants will walk you through our range of options for bathroom finishes. Explore this sophisticated look in our Kakadu 22, Springfield Rise Estate, Spring Mountain, QLD.

This leads us to one of the best parts about building new, you get full creative control.

You don’t have to settle for someone else’s floor layout, storage options (or lack thereof), or their taste in bathroom tiles, instead you get to build your home from the ground up, and watch on, as all of your choices, big and small, come to life over the coming months. And we think that’s incredibly liberating.

Whether you need a spacious home study, extra space for adult children or elderly in-laws, or to live a stone’s throw from popular amenities such as schools, sport centres and shops, our New Home Specialists are at the ready to listen to your needs and lifestyle, to help you find a block of land and home design where you don’t have to compromise.

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Image: Bask in natural light while creating a spectacular focal point for your living room. Explore this stunning skylight in our Embley 25, on display at the Windermere Estate, Mambourin, VIC.

From the start, you get to include value-adding features that would either be costly or a big hassle (or both!) if you were to include them retrospectively when renovating. Features like stunning raised ceilings, quality flooring and practical inclusions such as ducted heating and cooling.

One of the big draw cards of building new, is that you’re able to create an energy efficient home from the very beginning. Our New Home Specialists will look at the orientation of your home design on your block, in order to maximise natural light, all year round. Combine this with solar panels, double-glazing and energy efficient appliances, and you’ll quickly start to reap the tangible benefits with each quarterly power bill. For extra assurance, you’ll also receive an energy efficient assessment and certificate from an independent, accredited sustainability consultant, based on the state you’re building in.

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Image: Our New Home Specialists will discuss popular structural options for our floor plans, like a luxe butler's pantry. As seen in our Embley 25, on display at the Windermere Estate, Mambourin, VIC.

Depending on where you’re building, you can also take advantage of all of the various grants and incentives on offer. Stamp duty, also known as transfer duty, refers to the tax that’s paid to have a property transferred across into your name. The amount of the tax is determined by factors like the purchase price, the style of property and the type of buyer that you are.

When building new, or purchasing a house and land package, the stamp duty is only payable on the land and not the value of the home. This can mean thousands of dollars in savings. And when you think about it, when building, that could be an upgraded butler’s pantry or the entertainer’s alfresco that you’ve always dreamt of.

Should You Detonate or Renovate?

Don't compromise on your dream home with a knock-down rebuild

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Image: Our Masterpiece Dual Occupancy range provides the perfect option for making the most of your inner-city block of land with a knock-down rebuild.

If you already own land with an established home, you might find yourself at a different crossroads.

You find that you love your neighbourhood, but not your current home, so should you detonate and renovate?

By choosing to renovate, you’ll risk facing the DIY horror stories or the budget and timeline blow-outs that can come with opting for a smaller, custom builder. This rings especially true with the various trade and supply pressures brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic.

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Image: Hamptons living is well and truly here to stay. The beautiful Southport facade can be seen on our Hann 35, on display at the Minta Farm Estate, Berwick, VIC.

But you can have the best of both worlds with a knock-down rebuild with Simonds. You don’t have to compromise on location and you get to create a home that suits the way you want to live now, and in the future, rather than resign yourself to living in a home with a closed floor layout and dated features and finishes.

Get in touch with one of our New Home Specialists and they’ll help you to navigate your local council’s restrictions with easements, overlays and driveway location, as well as disconnecting utilities and lining up a demolition company to do the job.

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