November 15th, 2021 | Real Estate Advice

New Construction vs. Resale Homes

Finding the right home for sale in Ottawa comes with many decisions. From the neighbourhood, to the lot size, to choosing the house style, it can be challenging to settle on the right home for you. Deciding between new construction vs. resale homes can be difficult as they each offer distinct advantages as well as a few drawbacks, and it is important to educate yourself on their attributes. This article will take a closer look at each, and help you decide which is a better fit for you.

Pros of Resale Homes

View the home

The biggest advantage of resale homes is being able to see the physical house and know exactly what you are buying. Designs that look good on paper may feel different in real life, and it is preferable to see it for yourself whenever possible. With resale homes you have the ability to arrange a formal home inspection and can occupy it right away. We can recommend many knowledgeable home inspectors.


Older homes have more character and charm. With unique features, they have personality that is sometimes lacking in new construction.

Home upgrades

When you buy a resale home, you also gain the upgrades that come with it, such as a finished basement, landscaping, and enhanced fixtures.

Larger lot

Resale homes often have larger lots than modern homes built in tighter developments.

See the neighbours’ homes

Being able to see what your neighbours’ homes look like and get a feel for the neighbourhood helps you determine if it is the right neighbourhood for you.

Mature neighbourhood

Mature streetscapes and neighbourhoods often have old trees lining the streets, which add character and a cozy feel to your home. Not to mention, you won’t be living in a construction zone and you already know who your neighbours are.

Central location

Resale or older Ottawa homes are often closer to the city center than new constructions. Being within walking distance to shops is a great advantage that saves on commuting time.

Homes in Ottawa

Cons of Resale Homes

Older features

Some resale Ottawa homes come with older features and appliances that require upgrading. They may also come with less energy-efficient cooling and heating systems, as well as appliances.

Renovations and repairs

An older resale home may require renovations and repairs, and these costs can add up fast.

Pros of New Constructions


With new constructions you can often choose your desired floor plan, lot location, and specifications. You may be able to choose features like wall colours, flooring, carpets, cabinets, kitchen appliances, and other interior finishes

Tarion Warranty

New homes in Ottawa come with a comprehensive Tarion warranty that provides coverage on certain items for multiple years.

Brand New Feel

Being the first ones to make memories in your new home can feel special. The brand new, fresh feeling in new builds is appealing to many buyers.

Delayed Closing

Buying in today’s market and closing in a year means you have more time to collect funds.

New construction homes

Cons of New Constructions

Construction Zone

Purchasing a new build puts you at risk of inevitable construction delays; for instance, during the Covid-19 pandemic, labour costs went up and many construction projects were delayed. Depending on how many empty lots are left in your neighbourhood, you may also be living in a construction zone for a few years as all your neighbour’s homes are built, and even a second phase is developed.

Expensive Upgrades

When purchased through a builder, upgrades like dimmer switches, top appliances, fencing, and landscaping are often more expensive.


You will pay HST at a rate of thirteen percent on the selling price. However, if you do your homework, you can find some builders that have built that into the price of the home.

Warranty Limitations

Due to their warranty, new constructions often restrict you from building fencing or landscaping for a period of time.

Delayed Closing

While delayed closing does allow you more time to save, it means you have a longer time to wait until you can move in, which can also get delayed beyond your control.

Resale homes - Ottawa

The right Ottawa home for you depends on your individual needs and preferences. Both resale and new construction homes come with their benefits and drawbacks, but ultimately, when it comes to investing in real estate in Ottawa, there is no wrong choice.

If you are wondering whether a resale home or new construction is better for you, the Susan Chell Real Estate Team is just a phone call away. Contact us today for your free home market evaluation.