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Buying a New Construction Home in Tampa Bay

Arjen Homes
Jul 29 8 minutes read

Buying a New Construction Home in Tampa Bay

Buying a new construction home in Tampa Bay is a big task. You have to figure out where you want to live, what neighborhood, parts of town, what schools district, how close to Downtown Tampa, what to look for in a neighborhood, what to look for in a new construction home, what to look for in a new construction builder, on top of price, features, warranty, and everything else.

How do you simplify all of the craziness? We want to help.

Price range is usually where most people begin. but just like we said, in our other blog, "How Much Does Buying or Building a New Home in Tampa Cost?", you can buy a Honda or a Mercedes and it is a VERY different product. And then you can purchase a Mercedes C-Class or a Mercedes AMG or a BMW 3-series vs. a BMW 7-series.

Purchasing a new construction home has tiers just like every other product. You can purchase your "Honda Fit" of homes and save lots of money, it's a great reliable car but it's not like purchasing a Mercedes or BMW. Or you can choose to spend more, make an investment, and get more quality in your home. 

"...importance of getting what they want the first time so as to not have any regrets down the road...

In our recent blog, we spoke about how you spend MANY hours a day in your home. Multiply that (x hours) by 7  x 4 x 12 x 10. Even if the number is conservative (5 hours) that number is 16,800 hours over 10 years...

You need to love your home. That's why people end up purchasing a home just to find themselves looking at a new home a few years down the road.

Think about this, $50,000 or even $100,000 on a 30-year loan is really not that much money. That's why many experts say a lower rate is much more important than saving $25,000 (arbitrary number) on the purchase price.

A home is an investment, it's one that you want to make sure you can firmly stand behind. 

The 3 (initial) L's to finding a new construction home are location, layout, and lot.

Preliminary Factors

1. Location of Your New Home

Deciding where you want to live is important. $400,000 in New Tampa is a completely different home than $400,000 in Seminole Heights or South Tampa. In South Tampa, south of Kennedy & north of Gandy you won't find a new home for sale. However, south of Gandy you can find new homes in the 400's but then in New Tampa, you get a bigger home but it's much further from the city.

Figuring out what you're looking for in your neighborhood will help you have a starting point. And you may want to debate multiple locations at one time. If you're looking for more information on how to choose where you want to live in Tampa check out our blog.

2. Layout of Your New Construction Home

The layout of your new home is something that is not easily changed. It's not cheap to build additions or rearrange the layout of your home. Choose your floor plan wisely.

3. Lot

Your lot is the third factor that is not reversible. You can't change your lot without moving. You can't just add more land. That's why the location, layout and lot of your new home are the 3 initial factors you should take into account.

Choosing Between New Construction Homes vs. Used Homes

This is a lifelong debate just like Pepsi or Coca Cola and a very personal decision. That's why we break it down in our blog, New Construction Vs. Existing Homes - An Honest Comparison

The biggest factor, is how much do certain things matter to you? Newness, maintenances, location, size, etc.

For some, they want a much bigger home & a huge lot. The honest truth is that with resales you will likely get more. However, for others they are sick of the maintenance, they don't want to have to spend the time, money or energy renovating or dealing with an older home. Other people don't mind, you need to decide what's best for you.

Discover Secrets Most Homebuyers May Never Know About New Homes vs. Old Homes!

Click Here for Instant Access!

Choosing Your New Construction Builder 

There are many factors, but two of the biggest factors in choosing your new home builder are the reputation of the builder and the quality of home they build. You could easily save $25,000 and purchase a cheaper home but you need to ask yourself is it worth it? And when/where does it make sense?

New construction homes are not all the same.

Just like you can purchase a Subaru, a Lexus or a Bentley, there are trade-offs. A new home built by a production builder is completely different than a builder who builds spec homes, semi-custom or custom homes. The quality of the features and finishes vary. The craftsmanship varies.

Types of New Construction Homes

Tract (Model) Homes Vs. Spec Homes Vs. Custom Homes

We break it down, if you want to read more "Know What To Look For When Purchasing A New Home"


Tract homes usually involve huge volume building. It’s when a developer has a big plot of land and builds a very barebones home that is usually rather similar to the rest of the homes on that plot of land. These homes are built with a very specific price point in mind, which means quality can become compromised.


Spec homes are homes designed with the specifications picked out by the builder. There is some customization available to spec homes depending on where the buyer comes in the building process. It also depends if the builder has already bought all the materials yet. If the buyer comes during construction they can sometimes choose particular upgrades and finishes.


A custom home is designed and built for a specific customer. The customer usually has to pick nearly every little detail about the home. Then the home can start construction once all the money and details are handled. We fall in between spec and custom (semi-custom), but our homes are more of a spec home. We help save you time since you don’t have to pick out every detail about the home. We already put in custom upgrades and finished in every home so that the home is not cookie cutter. Rather than having to wait for a custom home, since we are constantly building new homes we have homes that can be ready to move in. With spec homes, you don’t have all the same time and money constraints involved with building a custom home. While still offering a lot of the flexibility and benefits of building custom.

What to look for in your New Home Builder

You’d be surprised at the varying quality of new homes from one state to another. From one part of Tampa to the other. Even homes being built on the same block and the same price range. In our prior blog, we cover everything, but for this one, we will keep it short.

There are 3 main factors to look for, quality of construction, quality of design (features & finishes included in their BASE home), and the reputation of the home builder.

1. Quality of Construction of Your New Home

From the ground up you want to not just look at what you can see, but what you can't see. From the foundation, the stem wall, framing, the siding, you want to look at all the exterior finishes and determine the level of quality they are using in their construction. Not all homes are built the same.

For example, we build our foundation with a steel reinforced stem wall that is poured completely solid. If you want more information on the construction, quality visit this blog.

2. Quality of Design (Interior Features & Finishes)

Once you're done outside you can look inside at the details. It's all in the details. 

You will notice the quality craftsmanship & design the minute you walk into a home or you will notice the lack of. You can either purchase the Honda of new homes or the BMW & Mercedes of new homes. In some cases saving money is necessary but remember even a $25,000 to $50,000 difference in price is not a major jump in cost when you remember a mortgage is broken up over 360 months. You get what you pay for.

To read more about interior finishes quality, read this

3. New Construction Home Builder Reputation

Reputation and name are everything. The company brand is everything. The clients of the builder will either like, trust, and speak highly of their builder or if will be unhappy with the quality of their home. You want to make sure your investment is a great, worthwhile investment. And that you will love walking into your home every day.

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