When you buy a new home, you sign an Agreement of Purchase and Sale. Among many other details and stipulations, there is usually a section regarding potential changes being made by the builder or developer without notice or permission from the purchaser.
Sounds scary? Maybe even unfair? It’s actually normal and you shouldn’t worry about not ending up with your desired final product, but you should be aware and ready to mentally cope with potential changes. It’s all part of buying a preconstruction home.
Here are a few things to remember in order to deal with changes to your home:
The change is usually necessary
Every municipality has different rules, and while the builder or developer should be on top of what’s allowed and what isn’t, sometimes minor details can slip by. We’ve heard stories about porches being altered, entry doors being moved, columns being added, etc.
Construction plays a big part, too. Changes could be made on the fly and you could end up with a mirrored version of your floor plan.
Think about timing
Since the majority of these changes turn out to be essential, it makes sense that they are made without permission from the purchasers. Imagine if every single change needed to be approved by every purchaser before construction proceeded. Housing projects with hundreds of purchasers would be delayed forever.
Compensation is sometimes offered
Compensation is almost never required, but some builders and developers will offer a small amount of money on closing in order to make up for the change to your home. We’ve seen anywhere from $500 to $1,500 offered for something like the removal of a door.
Remember, you are not entitled to financial compensation for a change to your home. When you signed the Agreement, you gave the builder permission to make any changes without notice.
Remember why you purchased your new home
You didn’t buy your new home because the front porch had three steps and not two steps. You didn’t buy your new condo because the laundry room had a sliding door and not a swing door.
You purchased because of the location, the reputation of the builder or developer, the square footage, and you wanted something new/never lived in. Small changes may be made before you take possession, but for the most part, the changes are minor.
There’s a certain level of risk with every real estate investment. After reading this post and making your first preconstruction purchase, we hope you don’t let any minor changes negatively impact your homebuying experience!