Properties come in all shapes and sizes, and when you’re looking for a home to buy, it’s a good idea to know what sort of property would be your number one choice.
Two of the most popular types of home among house-hunters are newly-built homes and much older, period properties. But before you narrow your search in favour of one of these categories, it’s important to decide which, if either, is right for you. So, what do you need to bear in mind?
New builds for sale often have a higher price tag than period properties. This is because they come in pristine condition with modern amenities and contemporary design. Period properties are likely to be cheaper to buy, especially if they have not been modernised or well maintained. However, if that is the case, you will need to budget for renovations.
It’s worth remembering, though, that the appeal of period properties and their many advantages means they often fetch a higher price than you might expect given their age and condition.
Style and aesthetics
New builds typically come in sleek and modern designs, often with open plan layouts that prove popular with buyers, and sometimes with high-spec appliances and technology. They also tend to be fairly neutral in their decor, and usually fairly generic, especially if they are part of a large housing development.
On the other hand, the architectural features found in much older properties can be charming and unique, filling the home with character. These period features might include ornate fireplaces, decorative flooring or intricate mouldings.
A brand new home is likely to be cheaper to run than an older one. New houses are built with energy efficiency in mind, with many of the latest technologies to make them as eco-friendly and cost effective to run as possible.
Period properties are likely to be much more mostly to maintain on an ongoing basis, and you’ll probably have to make some changes in order to improve their energy efficiency, such as installing loft or cavity wall insulation or updating the boiler.
Potential for improvement
New builds usually offer a fairly neutral canvas to add your own personality. However, buying a period property that needs modernising is an excellent opportunity to create your dream home, if you have the budget to do so.
If you cannot find a property that matches your image of the ideal home, you may wish to create it yourself through renovation and extension, and period properties often lend themselves better to these kinds of projects than a new build, which can have restrictions on making structural changes.
This also means that period properties usually offer more scope to add significant value. But remember that if a period property is listed, you will be more limited with your options for customising it.
Location is a crucial consideration when looking for a new home, and there tends to be a distinction in where period properties are found, compared with new builds. Older homes are often closer to the centre of towns, or out in the countryside, whereas new builds are commonly found on the edge of towns and cities, with amenities within reach but often not on the doorstep.
Ultimately, whatever type of property you choose, you should consider its proximity to schools, public transport and essential services and amenities, as well as to your own friends, family and workplaces.