Can I add one more tiny little thing? In a world where foreclosures are so rampant, please, please be careful about adding excessive upgrades at a builder. This is about appraisal. With resale homes, an independent appraiser, that is assigned through a service, on a random basis (in other words, not picked by the Realtor or seller), and has to appraise the home for the sales price in order for the bank to be willing to loan on it. In new home subdivisions this is NOT the case. The builder has a standing deal and authorization with the bank that the homes will appraise at the price listed, PLUS dollar for dollar on the amount they charge you as upgrades.
In the real worldâ€¦in resale homes, two 2500 sq. foot homes, in the same neighborhood could not possibly appraise for a $100,000 difference - and yet in new home subdivisions, upgrades can often run $50,000 - $100,000 more than the base price. So let's jump ahead two years. You have a life crisis, new job opportunity, divorce or some reason you need to sell. In this market, you'll be lucky if you have 2-3% growth in equity. You may still be losing equity. If you paid $50,000 - $100,000 in upgrades, and the house next door did not. Guess what: Your house is "comped" pretty close to the house next door, and you are in foreclosure, my friend. Please be careful out there.