Welcome to Middleton!! It is a fantastic city to live in. To answer your question, you are much better off purchasing a home that has already been built. Generally it is more expensive to build a home than to buy one that is already existing. Spec homes in particular seem to be a nice buy and present good value in most cases. Please let me know if I can help you in any way.
Sam Simon Real Estate LLC
I am an Agent with Keller Williams and do work the Middleton market. There are foreclosures here in the greater Madison area. Middleton is an upscale city, but there are foreclosures. Prices have come down approx. 15 - 25 % for the last 3 years. My husband is a builder, but he cannot beat the prices of some of
these foreclosures. I would recommend looking at some foreclosed properties, first. I can do a search to show you what is out there, if you like.
In construction, lumber prices have come down, but other materials have gone up considerably in the past 2 - 3 years. For example, shingles have gone up because of oil, and concrete is another. My husband and I are in the process of deciding if we should build a mutli-family property this year, the cost is not showing much of a discount from three years ago.
I hope this helps. Of course, I would love to help you either way.
Judy 608-235-0431, email: email@example.com
Keller Williams Realty, Madison, WI
Welcome to the area. At present, you will find a better "value" on a sq ft basis by buying a resale home. With new construction, while many builders have reduced their margin, the cost of materials, labor and to some extent lots have not gone down a great deal. If you find a resale home you love, you will have negotiating leverage if you are not contingent upon a home sale.
If you are not finding your dream home you may be better off building to get what you truly want and are not paying for unecessary sq ft, amenities, etc. You could also incorporate cost effective green building practices that give you more energy savings in the long run. One builder I work with has done some amazing things in his spec houses after working with a green building consultant. We focused on building a healthier, more energy efficient home.
Many "hungry" builders are unable to get financing to do a turnkey project at this time. You will need to obtain construction loan financing.
I would start by understanding your buying power with resale homes based on your criteria and take it from there.
Best of luck and don't hesitate to ask further questions.
The better deals right now are on existing homes. But if you are looking for a new home, an existing spec home that a builder wants to unload would be a possiblity for you as well. If you decide to build a custom home, you may be able to get a good deal on a vacant lot since lots in Middleton, Madison & Dane County as a whole are not selling like they were a few years ago. A builder may sharpen their pencil a bit because they need the work, but keep in mind builders are not going to build a custom home to not make a profit. So the lot pricing could be the difference maker for you. If you can get a deal and get a home built in time to still qualify for the tax credit, you may get the best of both worlds. It is tough to say where are market will be if 12-15 months is your target, but my info is based on todays market. I do work with a builder, so if you have further questions regarding construction cost, lot prices or anything else...feel free to contact me.
If you want a home that is very specific than building may be the right thing to do. If you want a value, then existing homes are what you want to look at. Most home sellers have discounted their properties well below what they paid for them a few years back. People and companies who need to sell are doing what it takes to get an offer. Take a look at what is currently out there and try to build the same home and I think you will find that the prices of existing homes are very appealing! Of course... No house is worth a deal if it doesn't meet your specific needs.
Good luck and HAPPY HOUSE HUNTING!
You would have better luck talking to a builder about a spec home that has been sitting for sale then trying to build a new home with a contract. I am sure I won't be the only one giving this advice, but builders are still building but on contract only for the most part in the Middleton and Madison areas.
There is a great inventory of existing homes on the market and you will probably be able to negotiate on those prices better as well. Good luck in your search and if there is anything I can do to help, don't hesitate to ask.
Also, remember the existing home owner tax credit. If you have owned in the last 5 of 8 years, then you are eligible to buy a home and qualify for the tax credit as long as the price is under $800K and you need to have an accepted offer by April 30, 2010 and close no later than June 30,2010.
I hope this information is useful!