Buying a new home versus buying an established one

Buying a new home versus buying an established one

As a first home buyer making the choice between buying a new house or buying an established home and renovating it is a tricky one.

There are many benefits to both options and a lot of information to weigh up before you make that decision.


We all have those friends who bought a "renovator's delight" as their partner was "handy" and they planned to renovate but 10 years later little has changed in their home.

Adrian Kelly, president of REIA, said one of the first questions people needed to ask was if building/buying a new home was going to be a cheaper option than renovating.

"The cost of renovating can be high and can take time especially if council approvals are required," said Adrian."Funds spent on renovating generally need to be seen as a long term investment in terms of adding value."

Glen Craigie, principal at McGrath Liverpool, said for first home buyers timing could be the deciding factor between choosing an established home or a house and land package.

"It depends on their urgency," said Glen. "If they need to occupy the property quickly, then they're best to buy an established property."

Glen said one of the pros for a first home buyer in choosing an established property was they could move in straight after it's settled. And that means they can save on rent.

"On the other hand, the time frame of waiting for their home to be built in a house-and-land package scenario can give first home buyers more time to save and take advantage of government grants," he said.

"At the moment, first home buyers are heavily incentivised to purchase off-the-plan property and house and land packages with the government grants and incentives."

However, Glen believed an established property can represent better value in buying.

"The land size is generally larger along with a bigger floor plan," he said. "It might also give the opportunity to add value over time by using a government grant to renovate. The garden is also already established - that can save on the landscaping costs required in house-and-land properties.

"When considering an established property, buyers can walk around the neighbourhood and see the streetscape, see who their neighbours will be, know the local infrastructure like schools, shops and transport."


One of the biggest attractions of building a new house is you can start with a fresh canvas. You can design it to suit your needs, with all the features and the latest appliances. New homes can also be more energy efficient too with the potential to reduce living costs.

"At Pycon Homes we often hear from people who want to build a new home but just don't know where to start," said Todd Murray marketing manager for Pycon Homes in Port Macquarie.

"Building a home can seem complex but a step-by-step approach with a builder you trust will help make the process simpler."

Some of the benefits of building a new house according to Todd include:

  • Pay less stamp duty
  • Government incentives and grants
  • Easier maintenance, no need for renovations
  • Peace of mind with new home warranty
  • Personalise the home to suit your dreams and budgets

"With 40 years of building on the Mid North Coast, we've built a business that takes the time to genuinely listen to what people really want when building their first home," said Todd.

"Everyone's idea of the perfect home is different.

"That's why some builders offer the flexibility to customise a home to suit a person's needs, lifestyle and budget.

"There is nothing quite like that new home feeling. The smell of freshly laid carpet and painted walls as dreams become reality on handover day. It is one of the most memorable occasions in life."