Why & How to Tour Model Homes Before Buying
Make a fresh start in 2018 by buying a new home! It’s a great time to purchase your dream property, but what’s the best way to get started? Tour new model homes! Keep reading to learn the most important things to know as you go through the model home tour experience.
What Is a Model Home?
A model home is a fully constructed house that you can tour in person rather than just online. This allows you to walk through the actual floorplans offered by a homebuilder.
What Will You Find at a Model Home?
When you arrive at a model home, you may discover that a sales agent and perhaps even the builder will greet you at the door. If so, one of these individuals will be available to answer your questions about the layout and features of the home and to take you through every room to show you what everything looks like. As you tour the home, the sales agent will likely explain to you various options you can select if you choose to have the home built for yourself—such as changes in floor plans, color schemes, appliances, and more. You’ll notice that it has been furnished and decorated to show potential buyers what it would be like to live in the space.
Tips for Touring a Model Home
Here are a few ideas on how to use your time wisely while touring model homes.
Make a Checklist and Take It with You: Are there features you require in your future home? For example: maybe natural gas is important to you. Does the community offer natural gas? Perhaps you need four bedrooms or lots of storage space? Make a list of the must-haves and take it with you to compare any homes you tour.
Determine Your Price Range: Work with a mortgage counselor before you tour a model home to find out how much you can afford. Be sure to only tour those houses that fit within your price range.
Taking Photos: It would be nice to take photos, but before taking photos or video, it is best to ask permission first since not everyone is open to the idea. It’s a simple courtesy and will be greatly appreciated by your host.
Take Notes: If you tour more than two model homes, you will want to take notes about what you like and dislike in each. Often it’s easiest to pick up a brochure as you walk in and make notes on it. This will make your decision later much easier.
Don’t Be Afraid to Ask Questions: The sales agent is there to help you gather the information you need in order to make the right decision for you and your family. Be sure to take advantage of his or her knowledge by asking any questions you may have. You may even want to even ask them if there was something you forgot to ask that would be important to know.
Drive Around the Community: Is the community a place in which you’d enjoy living? Does it have a playground for your kids? Nice landscaping? Are there schools and supermarkets close by? Before you leave the neighborhood, drive around to check these items, as well.
These are all helpful points to review as you tour model homes. Be sure to also gather information about each builder. In particular, ask builders if their homes comply with the State of Texas building code that requires a blower door test and a duct leakage test, and then ask to see the results. These tests are great at predicting the home’s energy performance. If you get lucky and discover your home has a BUILT TO SAVE™ certification, you need not question the builder any further. His or her home has been guaranteed by an independent rater to meet the requirements of a high-performance home. Buying a new home certified as BUILT TO SAVE™ is not just about saving money on utilities, it’s about improved comfort, indoor air quality, durability, and a good resale value if you ever need to sell.
Touring model homes and dreaming about your future house should be enjoyable. So, most of all, have fun!
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