How to Fully Assess a Display Home


There isn’t a bad time to search for a better deal on a new home. In fact, searching for new properties has never been easier. It may not be a good time to be visiting retailers right now, given the situation with Covid-19 over the past year, but the internet is a wonderful tool to use in lieu of physical presence. As home prices are published online, and often on price comparison websites, potential homeowners can simply use the internet to compare mortgage rates and see if they can get a better deal without leaving the house.

However, finding out what the new home will look like is a different matter. All the video calls in the world cannot give you the same experience as actually walking through the kitchen and living space that you may soon call your own. Plus, with the growth of new build properties on the market, it is entirely possible that your house has not even been constructed yet. So the house you are “walking” through, via a few presses on your touchscreen interface, is actually a display home intended to give you an idea of what your abode will look like.

What are the houses I’ll be shown?

Display homes are houses that retailers use to showcase the features of others that they offer. Display homes are otherwise called “show houses” or “model homes” in other parts of the world. They are newly built and intended to show potential buyers what houses that have been built or put together by the same property developers will look like. They are not simple mock-up buildings though, as most of these model homes are designed to be as functional as a real one would be. That means they will have running water, electricity, and a working telephone line already connected to the property. Builders will have often built the homes to be sold as any other one would, and in fact, will even have included a few extras.

A model tour.

In addition to the amenities, display homes are usually fully furnished and look as though they are already occupied. The furniture, furnishings, and the washing and cooking equipment will all be new, and in full working order. As these homes are designed to entice buyers and to levy good home prices for the seller, they may also include a few mod cons. Smart home devices, such as a google nest hub, smart speakers, smart displays, and voice command activated utilities are often part of the promotion materials that are installed in model homes. Even though other houses won’t have the same smart home features, they are unlikely to be removed before the display home is sold to a new buyer.

Expectations vs Realty.

So if you are looking over your mortgage rates and believe that now is a good time by a new house altogether, then you are likely to be shown a display home first, to give you the feel of what your potential house will look like. But remember, you didn’t choose the style of the furniture, and your new home may not be furnished. Also some of the smart home equipment may not be present in your property, even though it is in the display house. These are all things to be asking the property’s seller during your video call. The display home is designed and built to be a premium depiction of what all houses can include, not what they will.

But here is an idea to consider. Why not find out about the display home itself, and consider putting forward an offer for that instead?

Buy the display home instead.

During your (likely virtual) tour of the display home, ask question after question about the features of the property you’re touring. How long has it been built for, what is the warranty on the appliances, are any of the furnishings fixed in place, etc. Find out if the smart speakers and voice commands are built into the property. There are pros and cons if you choose to buy display home properties instead of as-yet-built homes, but they are often an unapproached option and may be worth researching. As with any home, learn all you can about it first through your seller, and then negotiate a price. You might find that this will be lower too!

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