Buying Off-Plan Property: A Guide

Is It Cheaper?

Buying off-plan can offer the opportunity to buy a house or flat at a competitive price.

Buying off-plan allows you to agree to buy at today’s price. This can be attractive when house prices are rising quickly. In this case, your property could be worth more than you pay for it once it’s completed simply because prices have risen in the meantime.

For example, say you agree to buy an off-plan apartment at a price of £200,000 now and it will be completed in one year. Should house prices rise 10% over the year you will in theory make £20,000 when you eventually take ownership.

You may get an off-plan discount. New build developers may offer very attractive off-plan pricing in order to kickstart their development and bring in some cash. In some cases, you may be able to buy off-plan at below-market value.

Developers selling houses and flats off-plan may offer generous buyer incentives in order to close the deal. For example, they may offer a contribution towards a buyer’s legal fees, removal costs and free fixtures and fittings such as carpets.

However, an off-plan may not necessarily be any better value than buying a property which already exists. New build properties generally sell at a premium. According to this research, a new build property in England can sell for a 19.3% premium compared to an existing one.

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