According to statistics provided by the United States Census Bureau, new housing starts for one recent busy construction month were in excess of 1.25 million with just slightly fewer housing completions at 1.16 million. These numbers accurately reflect the level of demand for newly built homes by prospective homebuyers.
When in the market for a brand-new home, however, prospective buyers often find themselves a bit confused about some of the terms used. One example of this is how a spec house and custom build differ and what those differences can mean for their situation. If you are a prospective buyer in the market for a new home, this information will help you determine whether a spec house could work for your needs or whether you should instead concentrate on a custom build.
Characteristics of a spec house
Like a custom build, a spec house is a new home. They are typically built to appeal to as many prospective buyers as possible within a certain price range utilizing currently popular layouts, features, and finishes. Spec home builders are often investors who purchase large tracts of land for the purpose of developing subdivisions of homes with similar styles and price points.
While some of these building lots are usually available for purchase by buyers who plan to custom build a home, the investor will also move ahead to build several spec homes, as well. These generic, but appealing homes will be used initially as a marketing tool for the remainder of subdivision. Buyers may see them advertised as either model or spec homes. Once they are no longer needed for display and marketing purposes, they are sold to a buyer.
Characteristics of a custom build
Unlike a spec house, a custom-built home often starts with a prospective buyer working with an architect and new home contractor to design the home they want. This process will include creating a design that meets the buyer's desires, as well as customized features and finishes of their choosing. While the design is in progress, the buyer will also be searching for the perfect building lot or parcel of land on which the home will be constructed. Once a suitable lot has been purchased, the new home contractor will break ground and begin the construction process needed to bring the fully customized home design to life.
Buyers who want to learn more about custom home builds versus spec homes should speak directly with a reputable new home contractor in their area. You can also contact a realtor today to learn about new homes for sale in your area.