5 Hidden Costs of New Construction

By: Ryan Renner, Realtor

I've guided many Omaha families through the new construction process. If you are considering buying or building a new home, please reach out. I look out for your best interests, not the builders.

 

There are over $7,000 in hidden costs associated with buying a brand new home. 

Appliances

At minimum prepare to pay for a fridge and a washer and dryer. Usually the dishwasher, stove, and microwave are included but that’s about it.

You could be looking at an extra $2,000 or more in appliance costs alone.

And all these extra costs are out of pocket expenses. So, you need to come up with the money outside of your downpayment and closing costs.

Occasionally, I’m able to get a fridge included with the purchase price so it’s not extra money out of pocket. And there are some builders that do include appliances. Celebrity Homes for example includes a washer, dryer and a fridge in their closing costs.

Window Coverings

Another expense that can add up very, very quickly is window coverings.

The builder will not provide a single window covering on your new home.

Let’s assume there are 20 windows on a two story this might actually be low for some homes. And let’s budget of $50 per window for blinds, curtains, or whatever you decide. And you can spend a heck of lot more than $50 per window on custom window coverings.

So, 20 times 50 is $1000 in window coverings.


Landscaping

The next cost you need to be aware of is landscaping. Most builders will include sod, maybe a tree (or two), and usually a sprinkler system. If you want more than that, then you will have to pay for it.

If you drive around new subdivisions and wonder why there aren’t many trees, that’s why. Builders often don’t pay for it and installing a tree or nicer landscaping isn’t usually a top priority for people. They want to spend money on the inside of the home.

If you hire someone to do landscaping it can add up really fast. And even if you do it on your own, it can add up quickly too.

Let’s budget $2,000 for landscaping. That is not going to get you very far, but it’s a start.


Fence

Another exterior feature that is not included in new construction is a fence.

And if you are interested in a new fence, it’s important to know what type of fence is allowed. Some neighborhoods have restrictions on the type of fence you can install. For example, you might not be able to install a chain-link or wood privacy fence - these are the cheapest type of fences. Instead you have to install aluminum fencing. And depending on the size of your yard, this can get pretty costly.

On the flip side, some neighborhoods (or parts of neighborhood) may not even allow fencing. This is pretty common when you are buying a villa. Make sure you are aware of all the rules and restrictions.

Let’s just put a round number on this and say it will cost $3,000 for the fence.


If you add all these numbers up of what I’ve talked about so far, you would be spending over $7,000.

And there are a lot of things I didn’t cover.

For example, do you want to add some smart home functionality to your home? Well a Nest and Ring thermostat will set you back a few hundred dollars.

You’ll probably also need a shower bar or two.

As you can see, there are quite a few hidden costs when buying a brand new home.

If you are thinking of buying or building a brand new home, make sure you have representation from an experienced real estate agent. Don’t just rely on the builder’s agent to help you.

The builder’s agent is looking out for the builder. You need someone looking out for you and your interests.

Please reach out to me if you are thinking about new construction. And also watch my other videos about the topic of building a new home.