I agree that slab homes are rare in the North, but there is no reason not to buy one. Many were built in the 1950-60's to save money in the construction so that demands of the populace could be met. I would recommend seeing more and then making a decision for yourself.
Clearly a home on a slab is not worth quite as much as one with a full height basement- even an unfinished basement. As far as true market value out there.
Think about storage- if the property has a slab, no large attic and no shed or 2 car garage, you really don't have much room to "put" anything. Keep that in mind.
Also, your furnace/ boiler will have to be on the main level somewhere. That can be a little noisier than in the basement.
I agree with the other writer- drainage is key- away from the building.
If you have any other questions, feel free to contact me. Thanks, and good luck,
A lot of houses have slab foundations and seem to be ok. I still prefer a cellar with walls that hold a house up above any splash that may happen. That is of course, a preference. Brick houses may not have any issue at all not having a foundation.
I live just outside of Natick. There are actually multiple neighborhoods in the metrowest area that are built on slab foundations. I find that New Englanders typically stay away from slab foundations. However they do so out of habit and an expectation of having a basement because so much of the housing inventory has full basements. I personally don't have any issue with homes built on slabs. In fact I find that they suit many persons needs quite well. Homes with basements typically only collect junk or as storage for those items we really don't need in our lives but we put i the basement as a collection area until the next trip to the recycling center. (For some reason that trip usually occurs only several year later!)
The other factor to consider is that many people in our area view basements as potential expansion areas. While this is true there are some serious misconceptions regarding finished basements. In some cases homeowners believe that finishing a basement is going to add to the value of their property, however that is not necessarily true. According to a recent conversations with an appraiser colleague, basement expansion areas will only be added to the homes value calculation if it is not subterranean i.e. underground. For instance a basement that is finished and is a walk out with full size doors on grade directly to the exterior will apply to the total living area. (note basements with bulkheads do not qualify under this premise). Also basement conversions only receive a rate of return on the initial investment of roughly 63% in our according to recent reports.
Lastly there is the question in inherent value. If you were comparing two homes with similar style, living area, and features; the home full basement would typically have a value of $10-15K more than a home on a slab foundation. When purchasing a home built on a slab in our area you should theoretically be seeing some cost savings. Conversely when you sell the property in the future your homes value will also be $10-15k less expensive when compared to comparable properties on the market at that time.
I hope that this helps you come to a better decsion and I wish you the best of luck.
K. L. Santos