Owning a home is a dream for many people out there. However, when you decide that it’s time to become a homeowner, you may be torn between building a house vs. buying a house. In this post, we provide you with essential information that will help you make an informed decision.

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Can I Build a House as a First-Time Home Buyer?

The simple answer to this question is yes. Let’s face it, who doesn’t love the sight of a new house that has been customized to meet their unique needs?

Everything in a new home has never been used, and you will be the first person to enjoy the first-hand experience of living in such a property.

But, the big question is, why do most first-time homeowners prefer buying homes to constructing new ones?

Well, research shows that first-time homebuyers tend to push themselves out of the idea of constructing new homes thinking that the cost of building is way out of their reach.

However, real estate agents and builders in Las Vegas say that a new home can be an excellent fit for any first-time homebuyer out there.

Newly built properties are less costly to maintain and are also more energy-efficient.

If you choose to build your first home, you will work with the builder to ensure that everything matches the modern lifestyle and is customized to your liking.

Furthermore, we have several financial institutions that are willing to lend prospective first-time homeowners money to build their properties.

The decision to build your first home and not buy it will depend on a wide range of factors, and only one individual can make the final decision, and that is you.


How Much Does It Cost to Build a House?

Most homeowners in Las Vegas report that the average cost of building a new house in the region is $292,946.

This cost is based on a 2,000 square foot home. However, this cost will vary greatly depending on a wide range of factors.

According to Home Advisor, the national average cost of building a pre-set home range between $149,825 and $437,023.

The cost of building a custom home may be a little bit higher since you are constructing a property that meets your exact functionality and aesthetic needs.

The unlimited options for building custom homes make them quite costly both in terms of money and time. 

Home Advisor reports that the cost of building a custom home will range between $350,000 and $1.5million depending on its size and the various customizations that you will need.

If we were to breakdown the cost of building a home, you would realize that developers and home builders will earn a minimum of $50,000.

The cost of materials will vary widely depending on the type and size of your property Labor costs will also vary depending on your pro, size and complexity of your house.

Typically, architects are paid between $60 and $125 per hour; engineers will demand anything between $100 and $150 per hour while land surveyors work for anything between $300 and $700.

The additional factors that affect the cost of building a home include the type of roof, fixtures/finishes design features, land and excavation, and the number of stories.


What Is the Average Cost-Per-Square Foot to Build a House?

In Las Vegas, the average cost-per-square-foot is $150, and this figure usually depends on the materials.

Builders will always quote the cost of building a property in terms of cost-per-square-foot.

With the average cost per-square-foot in mind, you can easily determine how much it will cost you to build your dream house depending on how large it is.

High-end homes can cost as much as $200 or $300 per square foot.

This information is provided by professionals in the region, and if there is any variation to the figures, it will be small.

So, what is included in this figure? Well, this price range includes labor, permits, foundation installation, drywall, wall framing, standard-grade materials, and cleanup services.

However, this cost doesn’t include premium upgrades, land purchase, deep foundations, and blueprints.


How Long Does It Take to Build a House?

Depending on the site and the zoning classification, it usually takes from three to six months to build a house.

Custom homes usually take longer to complete compared to production homes.

It will take anything between 10 and 16 months to finish building a custom house.

The primary reason for this delay is that homeowners who want custom homes often have their unique ideas and floor plans which can lengthen the overall construction period.

The key to any successful home building process is having approved permits that can take a long time to acquire.

Therefore, make sure that you plan and know how you will deal with the biggest obstacle of obtaining approved permits on time.

Environmental conditions also affect the speed of construction. Factors such as site topography and soil type will affect the rate of construction.

For instance, constructing a home with a slab on a level site with stable draining soil conditions will most likely take half the time of building the same property on a hilly lot.

The overall time that it takes to build a house will also depend on how skilled the builder is.


Can You Get a Loan to Build a House?

Yes, you can apply for a construction loan to build a home. However, construction loans are less popular than the standard home loans for purchasing already built properties.

A construction loan is a short term loan that you can use to buy land and construct your dream house.

Construction loans are quite similar to a line of credit; you only borrow what you need, when you need it.

During the construction process, you will only be expected to make interest-only payments or no payment at all in some cases.

In most cases, construction loans last less than a year and are repaid with another permanent loan.


Is It Cheaper to Build a 1 Story House or 2 Story House?

Typically, it costs less to put up a two-story house compared to a one-story house.

This is because the costly parts of the home building process namely the foundation and the roof are being constructed on a much smaller footprint. Furthermore, you will have less roof area to maintain.

The two-story houses also provide enhanced privacy especially if you have kids.

However, you need to be aware of stair accidents and lack of variety when it comes to ceiling height.

Single-story buildings usually provide more space for every square foot.

In fact, you will enjoy quieter living and access a wide range of design options to choose from if you decide to build a single-story house.

But, the resale value of a single-story house may be much lower than that of a two-story property.


Pros and Cons of Building a House

So, you have decided that you are going to build your home and not buy it. But, do you know the pros and cons of doing so?

Let us start by evaluating the advantages of building instead of buying an already built home.

One of the most obvious advantages of building a new house is that everything about it is new.

You don’t have to worry about how the previous owners treated the place, and it will take some time before you start thinking about repairs and maintenance.

The other top benefit of building is that you can create your property exactly how you want it from the floor plan, fixtures, fittings, and finishes. You know what you want, and that is what you will get.

A newly built home offers a wide range of luxuries that you won’t enjoy if you opt to buy.

Newly built homes are typically more energy-efficient and environmentally friendly.

This is because such homes are constructed from new materials and also fitted with modern appliances that make them to be more energy-efficient.

A new home is also a significant investment since it will attract tenants who are willing to pay high rent if you decide to let it.

Tenants are always willing to pay more for the luxury touches that are more common in newer properties.

But, what are some of the cons of building a home instead of buying?

The most obvious con of building a new home is the length of time that it takes for the process to complete.

You don’t have to worry about how the previous owners treated the place, and it will take some time before you start thinking about repairs and maintenance.

Another downside of building is that the cost of construction isn’t fixed.

Once you start the construction process, costs can spiral out of control if you aren’t monitoring the construction process carefully.

You may end up spending much more than what you had anticipated in the beginning.

You will also be forced to take time to find a unique home design that will work for your block of land before you start the construction process.


What Is the Cheapest Type of House to Build?

There is no specific answer to this question, but there are a lot of things that you can do to make sure that the cost of building your house comes down.

First, you need to plan and find a home design model that suits your budget.

Conduct thorough research and find a good contractor that is willing to work with your budget.

Use your network to identify people who can help you accomplish specific tasks and don’t be afraid to do some things yourself.

Be careful with the materials and make sure that you obtain insurance to safeguard your investment.


Advantages of Buying vs Building a House

The benefits of purchasing an existing property are more than just financial.

Acquiring an already built property is less stressful compared to building one.

You need to keep in mind that when you opt for building, you need to acquire land, pick your preferred home design, get the right contractor and also select your flooring plan, cabinets, interior trim, countertops, and all that.

When purchasing a home, your real estate agent will be there to help you negotiate the best deal possible, and you could potentially save a lot of money on your initial budget.

You can also move in right after you close the deal and make the necessary upgrades at your own pace whenever you have the time and money.


Stages of Building a House

The ten steps of building a house are:

  1. Preparing the construction site and pouring the foundation
  2. Constructing rough framing
  3. Completing rough plumbing, electrical wiring, and HVAC
  4. Installing insulation
  5. Completing the drywall and interior textures followed by starting the exterior finishes
  6. Finishing the interior trim followed by installing all the exterior driveways and walkways
  7. Installing hard surface flooring
  8. Finishing mechanical trims
  9. Installing mirrors, shower doors, and complete exterior landscaping
  10. Final walkthrough with the homebuilder.

Tips for Building a House

Building your first home from scratch can be a highly rewarding experience.

It offers you the opportunity to tailor your property to suit your needs and preferences.

Here are valuable home building tips that you need to know:

  • Get your plan in place and stick to it
  • Make sure that you budget more than you expect
  • Conduct thorough research and pick the right builder
  • Understand your agreement with the builder and know what you are entitled to
  • Get your financing in order and apply for a construction loan if you think you will need a financial boost
  • Constant communication with your builder is critical
  • Be sure to look for ways to save and get an independent home inspector to inspect the property once the builder is through with the construction process.
  • You should also make sure that you know your rights just in case something goes wrong

Are you looking to buy, sell, or invest in Las Vegas real estate market? You need a professional and experienced real estate agent that will guide you through this tricky market and help you find what you need.

The Lori Ballen Team is a team of experienced real estate professionals brought together for a common purpose-to get to the closing table. Don’t just go for a real estate agent; go for a FORCE that will help you. Contact us today at 702-604-7739!

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