A single-family home in Herriman is seen under construction on Jan. 11. Utah is one of 18 states where it is cheaper to build than to buy a home.

Scott G Winterton, Deseret News

“We wanted to do it our way, and we felt like we could save money, and we did.”

That’s what Brandon Merrill said about why he and his wife Karleigh chose to build, rather than buy, a new home.

In March 2021, the Merrills were living in an Orem townhouse they’d bought in 2018. They watched as their neighbors, who moved in a year after them, sold their townhouse for much higher than they’d bought it for. With interest rates being so low, the Merrills figured they could do the same and leverage themselves into a bigger property.

They looked at existing properties and decided they could build for cheaper, so they found an open lot in an Orem neighborhood about a mile south of their townhouse. They broke ground in August 2021 and moved in the following April.

The Merrills only expected to make around $100,000 on their townhouse. By the time they sold in early 2022, they made double that.

Experiences like the Merrills’ are becoming more common in Utah, which is one of only 18 U.S. states where it is cheaper to build a house than buy one, according to a 2022 study from StorageCafe.

Utah comes in as the fourth most cost-effective state for homebuilding after Hawaii, California and Colorado. The average total building cost in Utah, including land and construction fees, is $538,000, the study shows. That is $97,000 less than the average single-family home listing price of $635,000.

Quinn Crowton’s work as a realtor for Century 21 Everest takes him across Weber, Tooele, Salt Lake and Utah counties. He said homebuyers wanting to move to expanding areas like Herriman, Bluffdale and Riverton should definitely look at new builds, which are priced competitively with older homes.

The current housing market has made it much easier to get seller concessions, where the seller agrees to help pay part of the closing costs, Crowton said. Loans and discounts are also more prevalent, including the 2-1 buydown loan, a mortgage where the first two years of the …read more

Source:: Deseret News – Utah News


Which states are cheaper to build than buy a home?

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