When browsing homes on the market, you’ll see properties of all different ages. Both new construction and historic homes have their pros and cons. If you are considering buying an older home, here are some of the advantages and drawbacks.
Pro: More Character
Homes built decades ago have unique features that aren’t often found in new construction. Archways, nooks, pocket doors, and transom windows are all examples of architectural features that used to be popular. If you prefer this type of style, you’ll have better luck looking at an older home.
Con: Buying an Older Home with Wear and Tear
Many older homes are referred to as “fixer-uppers” because they require repairs and updates. No matter how diligent the previous homeowners were with home maintenance, components wear out and the elements take a toll on the home’s exterior. A new home that hasn’t been lived in yet will have no wear and tear.
Pro: You Can Get a Better Deal on an Older Home
In general, a newly-built or recently-built home costs more per square foot than a house that is several decades old. However, if an older home has been remodeled recently, it is more likely to land in the same price range as a newer home. If you are on a strict budget while shopping for a new home, you may have better success finding an older home that you can afford.
Con: Older Homes May Not Be Built to Current Code
Building codes are revised over time and a home that was built to code 50 years ago may not comply with today’s code requirements. This can affect the property value and is something to keep in mind when buying an older home.
Pro: Buying an Older Home with a Central Location
If you are looking for a home in a central location that’s close to downtown, you’ll likely find many older homes. The homes that are the most centrally located were usually the first houses that were built in the area, making them the oldest homes.
Con: Some Older Homes Contain Hazardous Materials
Older homes may have hazardous materials like asbestos, lead paint, Chinese drywall, aluminum electrical wires, and polybutylene pipes. All of these building materials have since been banned but were commonly used in previous decades.