Every week, we ask a real estate professional for their Short List, a collection of tips and recommendations on an essential topic in real estate. This week, we talked with Jay Noble, an associate broker with Waterfield Sotheby’s International Realty, for his methods on buying new construction properties.
In my seven-plus years experience as a real estate agent, I have sold a wide range of new construction, and have represented buyers and sellers in a variety of transactions. Here are some tips to follow in your own new construction transactions:
4. Don’t Skip Your Inspection – Just because you are buying new doesn’t mean that problems don’t exist. Some of the problems that appear in older homes may also appear in newer homes. For example, there could be some electrical wiring, heating system or soil grading issues. A good inspector should be able to pick up on those things, and in many cases, you can have the builder correct problems before closing. Consider scheduling your inspection after the home has been completed but before the finishes have been put in; that can make problems easier to identify.
3. Understand Your Builder’s Warranty – Many builders will issue a builders warranty. You should read that warranty thoroughly. The builders warranty usually outlines what is covered and for how long. Components of the home may expire at different times, and in some circumstances may not be covered. It is important to fully understand your warranty and discuss with it with your real estate attorney.
2. Obtain Additional Warranties – Appliances, building materials and mechanical systems usually come with separate extended warranties. Ask the builder to provide you with these warranties along with appliance and systems serial numbers, installer information and install dates. Make sure your client fills out the cards and sends them in before they expire. Make sure you get this information from the seller. It will be irritating to have to move an appliance that has already been installed to get the serial numbers on the back of it for warranty purposes.
1. Research, Research, Research – Do your research on the builder. What is their reputation in town? Other sources where you can find testimonials are Yelp, Angie’s List and Google. The Better Business Bureau will also provide a ranking based on the number of years they have been in business and the number of complaints received. Other credible sources are past clients and the local building inspector.
Jay Noble is an associate broker with Waterfield Sotheby’s International Realty. An early bloomer, Jay became fascinated with the real estate business at an early age while working for his family’s construction company, and at 19, he became a licensed professional and began working as the lead salesperson at the Woods Hill development in Woburn, MA. A graduate of the Manning School of Business at the University of Massachusetts Lowell, Jay now works with buyers, sellers, landlords and tenants.