Q&A: How do I negotiate best price on new construction home in San Diego?

Question: After viewing multiple new communities in the North County San Diego area, we have zeroed in on a development we are very interested in. We are on the priority list having been pre-approved by the builder’s preferred lender.

On our first visit to the community we did not have a real estate agent and filled out a registration card. It is my impression now that if we bring in a buyer’s agent that the builder will not pay the commission since we didn’t include an agent in our initial registration.

We know the floor plan we want and have reviewed and priced builder options. It is our understanding that purchase price is nearly non-negotiable for new homes in the San Diego area, but that we may be able to get discounts on upgrades, seller paid closing costs or even HOA fees paid for a certain period by the seller. For those of you who have been involved in new construction purchases in the San Diego area, what is your experience? Were you able to negotiate some seller paid concessions? How should we go about doing this without a buyer’s agent to represent us?

Answer:Hi Jason. That’s correct for the most part. On new construction in San Diego, typically the price is the price until the final phase of the development is released.

Home builders will typically build their first homes in order to pay off construction debt for the development and are usually priced aggressively. The second phase typically includes the “prime” lots that will sell for top dollar. The final phase is the “icing on the cake” for the developer and typically will be the developers profit center. So, negotiation will depend on what phase of the development you purchase in.

Typically in all phases you can receive concessions towards upgrades and closing costs, however, in some cases in order to receive this concession, you would have to use their preferred lender. The positives are that they will make sure you get the loan, close on time and receive a concession. However, if you may want to shop around a bit for better interest rates or terms. Many lenders in today’s market can also offer you credits which can be comparable.

The best advice for someone buying a new construction property is use an agent! If you buy a new construction home with our team, we would be happy to provide a commission credit.

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