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The ideal home

Property expert David Leake of Housesetc says that few things divide opinion among homeowners as much as new-build properties.

For some buyers, new builds represent modern living at its best. For others, period properties represent British architecture at its finest, from Georgian terraces to chocolate-box cottages.

Thanks to initiatives such as Help-to-Buy it can be easier, particularly for first-time buyers, to get funding for a new build. It is also often possible for the buyer to work with the builder to customise a property. Most new-builds also come with a guarantee from the builder and can be more energy-efficient than older properties.

New builds are generally laid out in such a way to reflect modern family life, with open-plan living spaces. If you buy off-plan, a new build may prove to be a good investment.

All of that said, new builds tend to be less spacious than older homes, and may be closely bunched, with smaller gardens and less parking. If you have to sell in the short term do not expect to recoup your costs. Completion dates can also be prone to delays.

There will never be a clear ‘winner’ but it’s best to have an open mind when both types of property come to market.

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