Real estate prices are high whether you are looking for a home in New York or Texas. As the housing market continues to recover from the drop out of the last decade, home buyers are struggling to make the most affordable choices. The biggest question for many people is whether it is better to build their own custom home or buy an existing house.

Homebuyers are interested in getting the features that they truly need and want. Eco-friendly home concepts and features are among the top must-have items on the lists of buyers. So, is it better to buy an existing home and add what you need, or start from the ground up and custom design your dream home?

The answer is different for everyone. To help you make your decision and figure out if you need to call a realtor or a custom home builder in Houston or Manhattan, we will take a look at the pros and cons of both buying and building a home.

Building A Custom Home


  • When you build a custom home, everything about your home will be covered under your contractor’s warranty. New appliances and furniture will also likely be warrantied for a few years.
  • When you work with a professional builder, you are in control of creating your perfect dream home. Every aspect of your home from the floorplan to countertops is under your control.
  • Eco-friendly upgrades like solar power can be absorbed into the cost of your mortgage instead of having to pay out of pocket.
  • When you work with a builder, you have the opportunity to get your financing direct from them instead of going through a traditional lender. This may be a great option for anyone that has difficulty getting financing.
  • When you build a custom home, every part of your house will be new. This means a huge reduction in maintenance costs for the first few years.


  • When looking at comparable house models, it is often cheaper to purchase an existing home rather than building from scratch.
  • If you are building in a new neighborhood, it can be difficult to estimate your property values until the area becomes more developed.
  • Designing and building a custom home is a large and complex project that comes with a lot of stress.
  • Building a home requires having a flexible schedule. Deadlines can come and go and you need to be able to work on a flexible timeline.

Buying An Existing Home


  • The cost of buying a home is often less than building a comparable model.
  • You are buying in an established neighborhood that will have companion businesses and schools already in place.
  • Established homes can have greater character than newer homes.
  • When you buy an existing home you are more likely to be in a lower property tax profile than if you choose to build a custom home.


  • It may take you a long time to find the right home for you when you are looking at existing homes. When you have a picture in mind of what you want, it can be hard to find just the right house.
  • Your must-have list needs to be more flexible when you are looking at existing homes.
  • Existing homes can come with a greater amount of repairs and maintenance.


Your home should be where you are the most comfortable and where you are excited to create a life with your family. Do your research and set your priorities before you decide between finding an existing home or building your own home.