What is a Spec Home?

When toying with the idea of building a new home, it is easy to get a bit confused by the terms common in the real estate industry while doing your research. One of these is “spec home”. The term “spec” is an abbreviation for speculative home for sale. A “spec” home is one a builder has constructed on speculation of what buyers are looking for, with the belief that someone will eventually come along and want to purchase it. Spec homes are not always large custom homes. Oftentimes, the home is a small or medium sized home with custom features and styles. A spec home could be a very plain home or it could be a large, luxury, decorated mansion.

Depending on the process you wish to follow, and what you want in your new home, there are advantages and disadvantages in choosing to purchase a spec home:

Advantage of Buying a Spec Home

These homes are usually at or near completion. This means you could move into a newly constructed home in 30 to 60 days rather than having to wait months for a new home to be built from scratch.

Another advantage is you can see exactly what you’re buying before making the purchase. The home is finished; no need to imagine how that large island you wished for would feel like in that smaller kitchen. What you see is what you get.  

Spec homes are usually a fairly safe investment offering excellent value for your money. They are usually well balanced in terms of amenities and upgrades, built in promising neighborhoods, and marketable. Then there’s the added benefit of simpler financing (versus construction loan to have a home built from scratch).

The disadvantages are few but obvious: most decisions, if not all, have already been made by the builder and your home is very much someone else’s idea of what it should be.

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Difference between Custom Homes and Spec Homes

A spec home design build is driven by the builder’s opinion of the features home buyers are looking for in a new home. The builder has chosen the land, the home’s building products, and it’s design features. It may sell during the course of construction, in which case, you may be able to choose many of the finishes such as paint colors, tile, counter tops and more. The builder however, was who determined the floor plan; not you. As mentioned before, spec homes are typically near or move in ready.

Building a custom home however, involves collaboration among you as the homeowner, the custom home builder, architect and various other parties involved in the design and logistics of the home build. It is a home tailored precisely for you. In the end, the goal is for you to have the exact home you envisioned to fit your family and your lifestyle.

Spec Home Builders

Spec homes are built by builders who buy a piece of land, build a house on it and then sell the home. Likely the builder’s decisions were fairly conservative as spec homes are built to appeal to the broadest market. Builders in the spec home market stake their reputation on their decisions. Spec home builders are different from production builders. Production builders are developers or builders who own a large plot of land which is divided into numerous smaller lots for stock homes to be built on and sold.

Spec Homes in Northeast Tennessee and Southwest Virginia

If you wish to find a spec home in our area, reach out to us. We are a licensed and reputable builder specializing in spec homes and custom builds.

At Mountain Empire Homes we are committed to trust, honesty, professionalism, and integrity. Our attentiveness, open communication, follow-through, and hard work will make your home buying/building an enjoyable and rewarding one.

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