Buying an older home appeals to many people over buying a new one. Homes built decades ago tend to have character and charm that a new construction home doesn’t offer. However, there are also challenges that come with owning an old home that can end up outweighing the benefits. This article goes through some pros and cons of older homes to help anyone trying to make this decision.
Pros of Buying an Older Home
Older Homes are Often in Prime Locations
While not all older homes are located close to the downtowns of cities and towns, it is true that most homes in these locations are older. If living in a centrally located area is high on your list of priorities, consider buying an older home. If you are willing to put in some work, an older home in a prime location can yield a substantial ROI.
In general, you can expect to pay less for an older home than a brand new one. Of course, this depends on other factors like size, condition, and location. In most cases, you will pay more for a new home than an older one in the same area. Remember to budget for upgrades to your older home, like replacing appliances or the roof if necessary.
While new homes tend to be cookie-cutter and look very similar to other homes on the street, old homes are more likely to have a unique character and style. In older neighborhoods, all the houses were not built at once by the same builder. When touring homes to buy, you’ll find that older homes have more personality.
Cons of Buying an Older Home
Wear and Tear
Any lived-in home experiences wear and tear, no matter how high-quality the construction was. Naturally, a home built in the last decade will have undergone less wear and tear than one built 50 years ago. It’s possible that the seller made improvements before putting the home on the market, but everything in the home won’t be completely new.
Buying an Older Home with Old Trees
This drawback of older homes is not usually considered, and also can be seen as a benefit. Old trees are beautiful and provide shade and dimension to a yard. Older homes tend to be on lots with older trees since trees are often planted around the time the house was built.
While these trees add extra curb appeal, they can also potentially be a liability. They pose a risk of falling and damaging property and the roots can infiltrate sewer lines. Dealing with either of these scenarios is very expensive, as is paying for tree removal.
Outdated Code Compliance
Building codes change over time, and while some issues that are no longer code-compliant may get grandfathered in, this isn’t always the case. Even if they are grandfathered in, they could still present safety hazards. Any system that doesn’t comply with current building codes should be replaced to make your home efficient and safe.