House and land, sorted
The ins and outs of package deals
Building your own, customised, perfectly designed home sounds appealing until you think about the work involved – finding a section, choosing an architect or designer and drawing up plans, picking a builder, getting consents, dealing with contractors and changes to plans and delays. It’s a lot, and that’s before you get into the financial side of things.
A house-and-land package gives you many of the benefits of building from scratch but takes much of the grunt work off your plate. A house-and-land package is pretty much what the name suggests – rather than buying a section and then building on your own, you buy a section and the house-build from the same developer. Most are in housing developments and offer a limited range of house designs for buyers.
Whether you’re a first home buyer or looking to move into a larger property, a house-and-land package could be a good option.
Simple, secure, speedy – the pluses of a house and land package
Simplicity and support
The main advantage of purchasing a house-and-land package is simplicity. Rather than having to negotiate the purchase of a section, then work with builders, designers, and the council, you generally only need to work with the developer. Most developments will have a designated person to help you through the paperwork and building process, an on-site team of builders and contractors to do the actual building, and they may even deal with council consents on your behalf.
Of course, you’ll still need to sign off on the design, choose your own fittings, and sort out a mortgage with your lender, but buying a house-and-land package will usually reduce much of the stress involved with building a property.
Securing finance tends to be easier as well, because you don’t need to get a mortgage for a section, then renegotiate when you’re ready to build. Because house-and-land packages tend to come with pre-set house designs, you’ll know how much you need to borrow before you start, which lenders prefer.
Quick, cost-effective builds
Those pre-set house designs also tend to be far more cost-effective and less likely to run over in price than a bespoke design. Building the same houses over and over lets the construction team develop a streamlined, efficient process. They can also reduce costs by buying materials in bulk and using standard documents to apply for consents. This speeds up the consent and building process, meaning less time spent waiting for your new home to be ready.
Limited choice, fewer locations – the downsides
House-and-land packages are almost always in housing developments. Although some smaller developments are built in central suburbs, they’re more often located further from the CBD, because that’s where open land is available. If living near the city is important to you, a house-and-land package may not be your best bet. If you’re considering buying in a development, it’s also worth checking out the local amenities – parks, schools, shops, doctors. Some developments build these things in, while others rely on existing amenities nearby.
Lack of choice
Choosing from a list of pre-set house designs is easy, but it doesn’t appeal to everyone. Of course, most house-and-land packages let you make some changes to the design and include your own features, but they don’t let you design your own house from scratch. If you’re after a very specific custom design or some particularly unusual features, a package may not suit your needs.
Because developers want to maximise the number of houses they can build, the sections available in house-and-land packages tend to be reasonably small. This means limited outdoor space – you may get a small garden or courtyard area, but probably not the large back yard of your childhood. If space is a priority, this is worth considering.
Living in a brand-new neighbourhood isn’t for everyone. Although you get a practical, modern, energy-efficient home out of the deal, you miss out on the character and personality of older suburbs. Established trees, a mix of different houses from different eras, and historic features are usually missing from newer developments.
Your home, your choice
Practical, simple, and cost-effective sound like a good deal when it comes to buying property. That’s probably why house-and-land packages are so popular, particularly with families and first home buyers. But if you’re more attracted to custom features, character, and a bigger garden, buying an established home or building independently is a better bet.
Want to know how finance works for house-and-land packages? Get in touch with the team at Global Finance now.