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Should you compare homes based on Price per square foot between home builders? Main Idaho Real Estate Insights
This criteria continues to surface and while it is relevant it is also only relative. The higher up the scale you go, the less relavant it becomes. If you are searching for the cheapest home, price per square foot makes sense as long as you can look past quality. Do you really believe that the cheapest home has the same operating and maintenance costs as the top end home? Do you really think that building to code means the builder trying to build the cheapest home is not cutting every corner possible?

While you could use price per square foot to see if builders are relatively the same price, it tells you nothing about what is inside the walls nor interior and exterior style and finishes being used. For example, there are different grade of stucco and other siding materials. If you sign off on the home and find out you get vinyl siding, will you be surprised?

If all you want is white walls (that rub away when washed) , cream carpet (that looks good upon move in and cheapens by the week) and has zero style; price per square foot may tell you the whole  story.  Adding things like art niches, closet organizers, plenty of lighting in each room, wiring the home for internet and other features are things that you won't get unless they are included in the price. Of course some practice getting the job and selling upgrades, of course everything is an upgrade! Admittedly there are home builders who may see you as a sucker and try to pull one over on you. The area's top builders are much more atuned to client satisfaction and competing for your business than the guy looking for one or two deals a year.

Credible Home Buidlers IdahoAgain, price per square foot is a good indicator of relativity but you should really review the entire bid to see what you are getting. If you are hiring a friend that you don't want to offend maybe you should ask the home be verified by  a third party like an ENERGY STAR or LEED home verification.

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Posted by tlangford at 1/25/2012 2:57:00 PM
Comments (2)
Re:Should you compare homes based on Price per square foot between home builders?
there is no practical use of price per square foot comparisons or for that matter as a metric when buying a home...location, location, location, builder history and reputation are all more significant measuring sticks.
you wouldn't buy a car by the pound are clothes by the weight of the thread used to assemble them...this is my "AS I SEE IT" COMMENT
Posted by on 1/27/2012 12:40 PM
Re:Should you compare homes based on Price per square foot between home builders?
Although I agree, for people who have no idea about new construction, this makes a good baseline indicator.
Posted by on 1/30/2012 11:07 AM

Michelle Penick, Build Idaho Client Real Estate Services

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