Build or Buy a home?

Build your home or buy an existing house?

Do not settle for less than perfection.

First and foremost, the largest advantage to build is:

It is YOUR home, the shape of your choice, materials etc. Your home will be reflection of your personality and taste.

Materials used – energy efficient and to the latest South African National Standards (SANS)

When submitting council drawings your architectural professional is required to submit SANS 10400 XA calculations that prove that your home is designed to the optimal energy efficiency.  This includes:

  • Evaluation of orientation
  • Estimated energy consumption
  • Thermal insulation for the floor slabs, walls and roof.
  • Fenestration calculations

Materials installed is manufactured under strict restrictions and safety standards.

The plumbing and electrical fixtures are more efficient which result in a more sustainable home in the long run.

Home automation and solar energy included from the start and it should not look as if it is added on.

When you appoint your professional team inform them asap should you wish to install home automation and solar panels. Your team will design according to the specialists’ requirements and specifications.


  • The main drawback of building is that its roughly 20% more expensive to build than to buy an existing house. However, should you approach the project with the right team, you can make a higher profit when you resell.
  • The house is designed with our current lifestyle and market in mind.
  • A new home with new materials and contemporary finishes is typically more appealing than a dated house.
  • Sometimes you have to live years in a “fixer upper” home before you can afford to make the changes that you dreamed about.

A new home should have lower ongoing maintenance and running cost.

Other positive points

  • If you build your own home there is a level of satisfaction of seeing your dream home come to life. You have sentimental connection with your home
  • Building in a new area your house might not be devalued by dilapidated neighbouring buildings.
  • You have a 5-year major structural defect warranty if the contractor is registered with the NHBRC
  • Building in a new area where you don’t have neighbours yet, they need your signed approval for any encroachment on their building line of you boundary where as if you buy in an established area you have no control about what the previous owners approved.
  • You are in control of the quality of design and workmanship of a new house.
  • Issues and defects are usually covered under the guarantees supplied by the contractor and suppliers.
  • The landscaping you can work with a clean canvas but it might take some time for trees to mature.
  • Your home will have updated council drawings and you have a copy with electronic copies.



  • Cost: Building can be more expensive than buying an existing house.
  • Time: It can take a significant time to finish the house especially if you don’t have the contracts in place with your contractor and architect. Plan for an extra 2-3 months before you move in.
  • If you build in a new development, you might be constantly surrounded by noise and dust even when your project is finished.
  • Landscaping – Some established houses have large beautiful trees.


Folger. J. 2019, Should You Buy or Build a Home, Viewed 6 August 2019,
Property Power,2018, Building vs buying, Viewed 6 August 2019,
Roberts. J,2013,Buying vs building a new home, Viewed 6 August 2019,
Dyer.R. Building vs buying a house: Which is better for the first-time buyer, Viewed 6 August 2019,

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