KB Homes - Belle Monte,Dublin - Is the price right for what they are offering ? or Room for negotiation $$?

Asked by Home4Me, Mountain View, CA Sun Dec 11, 2011

We have mainly looked at new homes in the Tasajara area from past few months.
Budget - 500 - 650k.

Yesterday we looked at KB homes at Belle Monte. They have detached homes over up on hill
with four different plans. We saw residence plan 2, 2371 Sq Feet priced at 669K.

My first reaction looking at the model house as, Laminated floor, some of the upgrades done to model house didn't look like upgrade compared to other new homes we have seen in that area(primarily Toll Bros at Sorrento). Agreed they are offering detached homes and HOA is lot lesser than the Sorrento ($71 vs $360). Beside it almost felt like if what we saw in model house was their upgrade, what's are they offering in Standard ?:)

Laminated floor was also turn down ..higher price tag and yet no real hardwood floor ..comeon now?

I would love to hear from experts on this forum on
1. Price point
2. Room for negotiation
3. Overall builder exp.

Appreciate all the feedback/comments/suggestions

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Meena Gujral, Agent, Pleasanton, CA
Tue Jan 3, 2012
Hello and Happy New Year,

There is always room for negotiation with every builder although they will never tell you that. I just sold a new KB home last week in another development and we were able to get the price lowered by $35K.. With Standard Pacific Homes we got a reduction of about $80K (however that was a few years ago).

To make a long story short, it is always advised to take an agent with you the first time you go to the sales office of any new development. The people in the sales office are working for the builder and they are not going to tell you that there is room in the price. When you take your own agent with you (someone who has had past experience in negotiatingwith the builders), you get someone looking out for your best interest. Even if the builder is very adamant about not reducing the price, you can negotiate free options. Believe me, there are several possibilities.

Meena Gujral
H-U-S Achievers Realty
0 votes
Michael Moore, Agent, Lafayette, CA
Mon Dec 12, 2011
Good question Home4me,

The new home market in that area has been closing at $311 sq ft per on average, as low as $280 (follow the link for comps)

Plan 2 is priced at $282 sq ft

That said Your best new home deal will be on standing inventory. The builder needs to get built homes off of the books

As we move to the end of the month and year the deals may get even better

Generally you can negotiate closing cost credits, this could include a buy down on your interest rate, thus reducing your payment...therefore you may be able to afford the $669
0 votes
The Medford…, Agent, Fremont, CA
Sun Dec 11, 2011
In today’s market, when looking at buying a new home, there are a number of factors to keep in mind:

1. Everyone wants to discount the price on new homes – everyone wants to walk away from the table with the best possible price. The chances of getting a discount in the current market, however, are very slim. There are all kinds of urban legends out there about buyers who’ve managed to get a big chunk of the price knocked off when buying a new home. Quite frankly – those days are gone – they existed at the beginning of the housing crisis a number of years ago when zealous builders overbuilt and then had standing inventory they had to dump. And the irony is that the prices they got became the new baseline for everyone else, so they didn’t really get the deal they thought they were getting after all.

2. You will be paying a premium because you are paying for the actual current market cost of building the home (think approximately $250 sq/ft) PLUS the cost of the land. In reality, there are currently plenty of homes on the market at substantially less per sq/ft than new homes. Unless you have to have that “new-home” smell, you might want to consider other options.

3. ALWAYS ask for a discount – HOWEVER, be aware that you more then likely won’t get one. Home builders are not very willing to lower the price on any specific home because that lowered price then becomes the baseline for all new buyers. Many buyers want to knock down the price because they want the bragging rights that go along with it. They fail to realize that they will usually be further ahead by going after as much soft costs as they can score and by playing by the builder’s rules. In addition, soft costs do not show up on tax records – prices do. Builders are usually not willing to knock prices down because they will become public record and will be viewed by every new buyer coming over the hill looking to hit the builder up for a deal. Many buyers search out the local tax records for sold prices before making an offer – they don’t want to pay more than anyone else paid.

4. Instead of trying to hammer the builder on price (hard costs), go after the soft costs instead. Ironically, these are often the areas where the builder makes the most profit and therefore are the areas with the greatest flexibility. These include things such as upgrades, prepaid HOA fees, closing costs and so on.

3. Many new home builders are publically traded companies with shareholders that are interested in Units Sold Per Quarter. There is often a push to get units sold at the end of each quarter, ESPECIALLY if there are units in standing inventory. The builder will usually establish sale prices for a few units they want sold quickly. In most cases, these prices are the best deals you will get during the quarter HOWEVER – they are not usually negotiable because they already represent the lowest point to which the builder is willing to go.

4. Consider going with the builder’s preferred lender: they will often provide significant incentives such as closing costs or a set amount of money you can use to buy down rates, pay for upgrades, pre-pay HOA fees, etc.

And ALWAYS make sure you take with you a Realtor who has experience negotiating with new home builders – you have nothing to lose – and a whole lot to potentially gain.
0 votes
Moxley Team, Agent, pleasanton, CA
Sun Dec 11, 2011
Buying brand new will always cost you more. KB upgrades are not in my experience as nice as Toll or even Lennar down the street. If you are looking for a better bargain you may want to search out a resale in one of these new neighborhoods. The downside is you will not be able to pick the upgrades exactly as you want them. On a positive, you will save a little and so your second question can be addressed there. Buying new you are normallylimited to the builder throwing in upgrades that they mark up 50% or more compared to going down the street to Lowe's. Sometimes they give good financing terms if you go through their lender, but the APR may not overall be better. Most of the builders in Dublin Ranch are good, but researching out the neighborhood and HOA is important and also what the future plans for the area as Dublin Ranch continues to grow with new builders coming in and Dublin expanding further. If you would like to talk more about Dublin Ranch, please let us know.

Moxley Team 925.518.1083
Web Reference:  http://www.moxleyteam.com
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