For many homeowners, building a house is the dream. It’s a chance to get your home exactly as you want it from the beginning without having to worry about a previous owner’s shoddy DIY job or secret nightmares happening behind the walls.
Purchasing a new construction is also beneficial because it’s an excellent opportunity to ask for certain upgrades that can be costlier down the line to install. From the small things you don’t think about until it’s too late to the more luxe items that will increase your home’s value, read on for cheap upgrades to always ask for.
If you have allergies or pets, the first upgrade you’ll probably want to consider with a new home is the floors. Most builders include carpet in their homes, which isn’t always desirable or ideal for your living style. Now is a great time to swap carpet for hardwood floors or high-quality laminate or vinyl flooring instead. Doing so increases the home’s overall value, plus you won’t have to worry about ripping up the floor and living through a renovation down the line.
A Deeper Basement
Whether you’re finishing the basement now or waiting until later, once those concrete floors are poured, there is only so much you can do about the height of your basement ceilings. That’s why asking for a deeper dig in the basement during the building phase can be a good idea. It gives you coveted basement height, opening up the space and making it more inviting.
On the subject of unfinished basements, it’s a good idea to get roughed-in plumbing for a potential bathroom or half-bath during the initial build. If you decide to put in a washroom down the line, the groundwork is there. Otherwise, you’ll have to drill concrete, which isn’t always cost-effective.
Taller Cabinets and a Kitchen Island
Some kitchen upgrades, like backsplash, appliances, and countertops, can wait until after the house is built because you can get better deals and a wider selection. One thing you want to invest in from the beginning, though, is good bones. Opt for taller cabinets with more storage space and a kitchen island to add extra counter space and storage, along with a place for the family to hang.
Extra Electrical Inside and Out
Have you ever entered a room and wondered why there was no electrical socket where you needed it? The homeowners probably didn’t ask for this extra perk during the initial build. Add electrical units during the building phase while the walls are open to simplify life later. Consider spaces like closets, garages, laundry rooms, and pantries, where you might need to plug in an appliance or tool.
Don’t forget your outdoor space, either. You’ll want outlets for hanging lights during holidays and units in the back for outdoor kitchens, string lights, fans, and more.
When considering your home’s overall electrical capabilities, it’s essential to think about the type of wiring system you’re installing. Putting in an advanced wiring system now can mean that your home will be ready as newer technology, including electric vehicles, progresses and becomes the norm.
A Natural Gas Line
Another upgrade to consider is a natural gas line for barbecues and fireplaces. They also come in handy if you ever want to put in a hot tub.
Extra Lighting Options
Your dreams of a light and bright home will be quickly shot if you don’t have enough lighting in your new house, so be sure to add some where necessary. Recessed lighting is usually a good idea, but it can vary from room to room. However, you don’t need to spend money on fancier light fixtures. After the fact, there are many deals and options to peruse, and they’re simple enough to swap out once you get a feel for the space.
There’s nothing wrong with standard tiling in your new home, but if you want to give your space — particularly the bathrooms — a unique feel, upgrade your tiles early on. It’s cheaper to do during the build than it is to do afterward, and it will add a touch of luxury to your space.
A Bigger Garage
If you have the option to expand your garage, take it. Aside from a place to park, garages double as storage for all outdoor tools and toys. A larger unit will give you more space to store those things neatly so you can stay organized without feeling cluttered. If there’s no door to your house from the garage, consider adding that during the building phase as well.
Is your builder offering extra storage through built-in units or extra closet space? Consider taking them up on it because an organized house is a happy house. Sometimes, you don’t realize how little storage there is in a room until it’s too late, so consider those upgrades as your dream home comes together.
Energy Efficient Upgrades
Last, don’t forget the upgrades that will keep you and your family comfortable while saving on yearly bills. Things like extra insulation, energy-efficient windows, smart thermostats, or an air source heat pump can go a long way in making your home run more smoothly.