Is it Cheaper to Build a Home or Buy One?

This week we will be talking about, “is it cheaper to build a home or buy one”? So stay tuned, and we’ll get right to it.

Hey guys! Randy here with NextHome Treasure Valley. I’m a Realtor® in the Mountain Home and Boise Idaho area. About a month ago, a friend of mine that I’ve been working with asked me if it is cheaper to build a new home or buy one. He had a company that he had been looking at online, and he asked me my opinion on it. I was honest and told him that I’ve never dealt with a new-build so let’s find out. So, we set up a consultation with an unnamed company here in the Boise area. They were pretty informative. The gentleman that we met with was going over some stuff with us and answering questions. Then I also researched it, so hopefully, we can answer some of that for you.

With new-builds, there are some plusses, and there are some minuses. So, with new builds, the house is going to be brand-new. More than likely, you’re not going to have a lot of repairs to do. You get to do the cool stuff like picking the cabinets, choosing the colors. Sometimes the builders are going to offer incentives. So, they might throw in appliances, or they might pay individual costs. But, usually, it does cost a little bit more. And the one thing that stood out from our meeting is, we were asking about the land and recommend land for us to look at? They said no, you would actually want to find land on your own, and then we can tell you if that land will work for us or not. You might have to get building permits in your area. So you want to do your due diligence on that. There was the cost of the building of that house, there was the land cost, and then there was a third cost of development costs. He said that that is standard for all the homes they build. You have to do the development part and pay for the house. So the attraction for when my friend was looking at the houses online was this price tag that they were showing, but you’re not seeing the full picture. You’re only seeing the outer shell if you will. So that’s something to keep in mind when you’re doing a new-build, and it can take up to 6 to 8 months before you get into the house.

Sometimes quicker, of course, and sometimes might even take longer. But the average is about six to eight months from what I am researching. Also, if you are a yard person, this may go one way or the other. Often, the yards are a blank canvas, so if you’re someone who likes to get out there and create for yourself, that might be what you’re looking for. You might want to see a bunch of dirt when you open the door so you can lay sod, you can plant seeds, or you can do whatever you wish to—trees, flowers, what have you. But to many people, they don’t want to deal with that part. So it’s all going to be about you and your perspective. Do you want to go out there and deal with that, or do you want to put in Astroturf? Whatever it is that you’re looking to do.

So now we talk about already lived in homes. They probably cost a little less, but there’s a good chance that you’re going to have to do repairs on those homes. Sometimes that’s okay. One of the clients I worked with in the past wanted a home that they could work on instead of a more modern home but had a little bit less square footage. They wanted the house to have square footage that they could work on. They were looking forward to doing the work. Many times, people watch Property Brothers and Fixer Upper and want to go out and do some of that work themselves. They weren’t looking to flip the home, this was their home, but the extra work didn’t bother them because that’s what they wanted. As you’re looking at older homes, even some newer ones, like within the last five years, might need some work. Usually, they are ready to move in already. New-builds often have to wait for 6 to 8 months, and you might be prepared to get in there now. So that might be a deciding factor in whether or not you want to build a house. There are also spec homes, and stuff like that. You can get in a lot quicker, but you would have to look into the details and see if it would still be like a new-build home. Often, pre-lived in homes already have appliances in them, so that might be a cost that you get to save. However, sometimes appliances are old. That same client I was telling you about had an old oven, and they had made up their minds before they moved in that the oven was being donated. It wasn’t something that they wanted to keep. So it could be a good thing or a bad thing. You might be walking into brand-new appliances that the past owners had bought, but maybe they don’t fit in the new house, and they’re not taking them. Perhaps they don’t want to bother with it. Sometimes past pets might be an issue, or someone smoked in the house before, and maybe you have allergies to either one of those. That’s something else you have to keep in mind with a pre-existing home, where a new-build more than likely you’re not going to have as much of that issue. It’s just like buying a car. If you purchase a brand new car, it’s excellent, but you pay a little bit more. It’s your car, and you’re the only one that’s been in that car. If you buy a pre-purchased vehicle, a lot of the bugs may have been worked out already.

So, just like anything, you want to see what works best for you and decide. So thank you for watching the video. If you have any questions, my contact information is below, so if you’re looking to move to the Boise area, you can get a free relocation guide go to Thank you so much. Have a great day, and thanks for stopping by.

The Weather in Mountain Home, Idaho

Hey guys, this is Randy here with NextHome Treasure Valley. I’m a Realtor® in the Mountain Home and Boise area. Thanks for stopping by. This week we’re going to be talking about the beautiful weather here in Mountain Home, Idaho. I know that’s a bold statement to say. Why is it beautiful? Well, in my opinion, because we have all four seasons. I know everybody does. But, I mean, we have all four seasons. Our summers are hot, our winters are cold, and then our spring and autumn are lovely. The fall here is gorgeous. You feel it in the air, and it’s terrific. The winters here are also beautiful when the snow’s all over, and it prettifies the town. Prettify, that’s a word. But, it is pretty dry here in Mountain Home. Our average rainfall is about 12 inches a year, and compared to the US, the average rainfall is about 38 inches, so it’s a drier climate. 



Summers here can get pretty warm. We have a few days over 100 degrees, but the average temperature here in the Summer in Mountain Home, Idaho, is about 93 degrees. It can get hot here, but not too bad. The good thing about the summers we have here is there are lots to do out there. There’s a public pool in Mountain Home. Usually, you’re not going to know too many people that own a swimming pool, unless it’s like an above ground pool. But, there’s lakes and rivers all around, there’s lots of stuff to do when the weather does get warmer. 


What about the dreaded winter months? The winters here can get a little cold. I’m not going to lie, and it does snow. The average winter temperature in January is about 23 degrees. We’re below freezing, and it’s kind of funny because at the beginning of winter, the first time it hits 32 degrees, it’s like ouch! Like oh my gosh! It’s getting cold, and then by a month in, like 32 degrees is like a warm day. Like you’re out there sweating. We don’t get a lot below zero. We only get about two days a year, on average, that is below zero. Of course, some years get more than others. We do get snowfall. Many people ask about the snow, and honestly, it depends on where you’re coming from. If you’re coming from a place that gets no snow at all, it might be a little overwhelming, but if you’re coming from a place like Green Bay, Wisconsin, where it snows all the time, you probably won’t even notice the snow here. It’s so mild. We get about 15 inches a year and compare that to the average in The United States, about 28 inches. It’s not bad at all. Before I was a Realtor® full time, I traveled between Mountain Home to Boise every day, which is about 30 to 40 miles, and there was only a couple of days a year that I even had to worry about the drive. And then a lot of people around here talk about Snowmageddon! That was the winter of 2016 to 2017, and when Boise experienced about 39 inches in snow that year. The sixth snowiest on the record sounds terrible until you realize that that is just right around the national average. That goes to show you, what we call Snowmageddon here in Idaho, really wasn’t that much bigger than the national average. That’s a good thing if you’re not someone who likes to drive in the snow or is a little worried that our snow’s not that bad. 


And then after the snow goes away, the Spring and Fall are just absolutely fantastic here. You have a very distinct Spring and Fall. Lately, I’ve been feeling the Fall kind of start coming out. Still summer, but there have been a couple of days where you start feeling that colder weather, and there’s, there’s, there’s a feeling in the air you get when that fall comes and then by the time, you know, October hits, and Halloween. It’s just a wonderful feeling. It can get a little windy here also. Between February 4th to January 29th, the average wind speed is about 7.5 miles per hour. Which doesn’t sound that bad, but we do get, of course, those vast gusts that come in. You know the 30s plus mile per hour winds. During the colder seasons, sometimes that wind can make a little bit chillier, of course. But usually, it’s not too bad. 


If you’d like to know more about Mountain Home, check out the video here, the pros and cons of Mountain Home, Idaho. Thank you for stopping by, and we’ll see you next Friday. Thank you.


Moving to Idaho?

Hey guys, this is Randy with NextHome Treasure Valley. I’m a Realtor® here in Mountain Home Idaho and the Boise Idaho areas. This week we’re going to look at moving to Idaho.



Hey guys, I recently took a trip to California. I grew up there, but I’ve been living in Idaho since May of 2000. I’ve been back occasionally, but it’s probably been eight years or so.

All of this is just my opinion, of course. But, it was fascinating to me while talking to many people, not only one group but multiple groups. I had many friends and family spread out throughout Southern California. I went to many different places, and the one thing that I noticed with conversations to these die-hard Californians is that a lot of them are not happy. There’s a lot of people not happy. And I know that if they’re not satisfied in California, they’re probably not satisfied in other states as well. There were a lot of conversations about moving to Idaho.

A couple of weeks ago, a Realtor® friend from Texas that I went to high school with messaged me. He told me that he has seen a couple of videos about Idaho not wanting Californians to move here. He asked, “does Idaho hates Californians? I replied, “well, I’m not sure. A few do. But, I think overall, that’s not the case.”

I think a lot of people are very welcoming to people from out of state coming in. I think the main thing would be to leave Idaho how you found it. It’s like moving into an apartment, or something with somebody for a couple of months, or having someone move into your apartment. The first thing they want to do is come in and move the couch around and everything to suit them.

I think that’s where a lot of people have a problem. It’s not the people coming in, it’s just that they want to keep Idaho the way it is. A lot of people welcome you with open arms. There’s a lot of people here excited about the growth. I think that’s something to keep in mind, and that’s not just for California, but f you’re coming here from other states. Many people from Idaho that I’ve had conversations with that are cynical about people from California moving here are ex-Californians themselves. They’ve been here for 10 – 15 years, so they feel like they don’t want the new crop. Ironic? Or they have family that was from California originally.

Idaho has a lot to offer. There are boating and skiing. One thing that kept coming up in the conversations that I had with people was, “what about the gun laws there?”

Well, the gun laws are a lot more lack in Idaho. I’m not a gun expert by any means, but I know we have concealed carry for the Idaho residents, although there are rules, of course. So, that was appealing to a lot of people.

Traffic was a big subject from California. But, I’m sure it’s a big thing from many other states as well. And the question was, “does Idaho have a lot of traffic?”

Well, that depends on who you ask. To me, no, it’s not that bad yet. But, I think if we keep growing the way we are and they don’t plan for that accordingly, then traffic could get worse and I’m not going to lie, my 30 minute trip from Mountain Home to Boise sometimes will take about an hour and a half, depending on construction or accidents.

They also asked about housing costs. Well, it’s affordable compared to the Nationwide prices. It’s exceptionally cheap, coming from California. I watched a video of a news clip from San Francisco, and I think it was from 2017 or 2018. It showed the median housing costs in San Francisco was 1.3 million, I believe, and in Boise at the time was $300,000. So, it was like literally something like a million dollars difference. You can see the appeal of people wanting to move to Idaho.

The key, as I said before, is not to change things. I think many people would be more welcoming if they knew that people would enjoy Idaho how most people from Idaho love Idaho. That’s a lot of Idahos! But, you understand what I’m saying. It’s just like if you move to California, from Idaho, you’re not going to go down there saying, “oh, we’re going to make this into the new Idaho.”

It’s just not going to happen. Or to Texas, or wherever. So anyway, as I said, this is just my opinion. I’m not an expert by any means. I live in Idaho, and I grew up in California, so I’ve experienced both places. It was nice to go back to California. It was nice to be back where I grew up for a little while, but I was happy to return to Idaho.

So, what do you think? Do you agree with me, do you disagree? Comment if you have other thoughts. If you like what you read, please like, and subscribe. The Mountain Home video goes over a lot of this stuff, and it talks about the town that I live in, Mountain Home Idaho. So, if you’re looking to move to Boise or Mountain Home, it might be an idea for you. Also, Mountain Home is about 30 miles away, and housing cost is a little bit lower than what it is in Boise. If you want a free relocation guide, click on this link, and you can get a free download, just put in your email address, and you can download your relocation guide for moving to the Treasure Valley. It doesn’t go over Mountain Home, but it does go over the Treasure Valley, which Boise is in the Treasure Valley. Amongst another group of cities there. So anyway, thank you for sticking with me this far! I hope you have a great day, and I’ll see you next Friday. Thank you.

Pros and Cons of Living in Mountain Home, Idaho Part 1

Hi, I’m Randy with NextHome Treasure Valley. Today we’re going to check out The Pros and Cons of Living in Mountain Home, Idaho Part One


The first pro would be that people here are friendly. You can’t go into Walmart without talking to people for quite a while. I mean, everywhere you go, people are trying to help you out. It’s pretty cool!


The con of that is people are friendly. And what I mean by that is sometimes you want to run into a store, and not talk for an hour, or feel like you’re rude by not taking the time to talk to people. If you’re ever at a stop sign, people are friendly there too in the wrong way. Like, they will sit there forever, just waving you on. So, I mean, you just have to go. Right? You can sit there and be friendly with them and wave them on, but eventually, one of you will have to move, it’s probably not going to be them. 


The second is we have the Community Canvas! I had the honor, with my partner Kim, we shot a documentary, and we were able to shoot video of the first year. If you’re familiar with Boise’s freak alley, it’s very similar. It’s an ongoing thing, though, and they’re just really doing a great job with the Community Canvases. It’s the third or fourth year, and it’s cool to see how it progresses through the years and keeps going.


The Con would be the speed limit is super slow in Mountain Home. I just recently visited California, and luckily I knew what to expect this time. I grew up there, but it’s been a while. Going back to California, you have to go! You have to go! You live in Mountain Home long enough, and some of that dies inside you. And it takes a while. Because our speed limit going through the town is 25 miles per hour, sometimes it’s hard to even coast at 25. It’s rough—35 on the outskirts of town. There’s a road; it’s a country road here that used to be 45 or 55. They even made that down to 35, and you’re out in the middle of nowhere. So, just be warned if you got a heavy foot as I do… 25 is rough. 


So, Pro number three, there’s lots to do in the surrounding area. There’s hunting, fishing, boating if you’re an outdoorsman or woman. You can float the river in Boise. There’s just a ton of stuff to do. There’s The Bruneau Dunes that you can go check out. You can ride on your quad, whatever. 


The Con there is the opposite is in town, there’s not a lot to do. They are building across from the Walmart here in town so, maybe they’re adding more to do. But as of right now, we have a bowling alley, restaurants and even that’s slim. And the rest is escaping me. Oh, golf course, we have a golf course. And a driving range on that. But that’s about it. We used to have a movie theater in town twice… three times, and it’s gone out of business. A friend of mine owns the bowling alley, and it’s excellent; it’s just they’re not open all the time. It’s not like a typical bowling alley that’s open from 10 in the morning until ten at night. There are specific hours. It’s not open in Summer. I believe they’re building a new Rec Center, but I’m not 100% sure. So, know that you might be traveling to do a lot of your recreational things.


So, pro number four is the Air Force Appreciation Day, which unfortunately has been canceled for this year. But, usually, it’s a cool deal. The whole town comes out. There are vendors, and there are just all kinds of things. There’s a parade. Just a cool thing that the entire town comes out and checks out. 


The con is that there are not many places to park on that particular day. There are just so many people from all over. If you enjoy walking, that’s great. There are places where you can park. We have our green belt, which we’ll have to talk about in another video, but it’s a place where you can recreational walk for I believe it’s two and a half miles and maybe further now. So, there’s parking there. There’s parking here and there, but that’s still kind of a ways away, on the Air Force Appreciation Day or even other city events, sometimes it’s a little tough to get parking.


Pro number five is the housing is very affordable compared to Boise, here in Mountain Home. Compared to much of the country, the housing is very, very affordable. 


The Con, what is affordable to most people, here in town, has gone up quite a bit. What I mean by that is, for instance, my nephew got his home for $70,000 about five years ago, and now, when I ran comps on his home, we were looking at about $170,000. So, in five years, it’s gone up about a hundred thousand. A lot of people, if they hear about a three-bedroom, two-bath house, even if it’s a 1950s build, $170,000 is affordable. So, it’s all about your perspective, and your situation of whether or not Mountain Home will be super cheap or not. We’re still at the place now that $300,000 will give you a lovely house, there again depending on your perception. But, it is a great place right now, financially, if you’re especially moving from a higher-end place. You have a little money to play with when coming in. As I talked about before, the con would be if you lived in Mountain Home for many years, the price is probably seeming high to you, not affordable because the cost has gone up so much. So, keep that in mind that we are experiencing a lot of growth, which affects some people who have been here for a long time. Once again, it all depends on your perception or your financial situation coming into Mountain Home, Idaho.


Finally, kind of a bonus pro, and I touched on it earlier, they are building something across from the Mountain Home Walmart here. They’re working on something, and I’ve heard rumors, but I don’t want to go into what I’ve heard. I don’t necessarily believe some of them, but they’re building something, so fingers crossed that it’s something fantastic! So we’ll find out as they continue to develop. But as of right now, I’m just excited to see what could be. Hopefully, there’s some entertainment type stuff there, and I know they did build or open a family fun center Mountain Home. I haven’t been to it yet to give you my two cents on it, but that is also here. So, I guess that’s

a double bonus, if you will. 


Anyways, what do you think? Did I leave something out? Maybe I can add it in part two of living in Mountain Home, Idaho pros and cons. Let me know if there’s anything that I left out. And if you’d like a complimentary copy of the relocation guide for the treasure valley, please click, and then you just put in your email address. It’s not going to cover Mountain Home, but it does cover the Boise area, and I’m working on Mountain Home. I just haven’t gotten it out yet. But, some people are looking at Mountain Home, they’re also looking at Boise and that maybe you so, if that is you, or if you’re just curious, please click on the link, and you just put in your email address and contact information, and you’ll get that download, and then you can check it out!


Once again, I’m Randy with NextHome Treasure Valley. Let me know if you have any questions or concerns. Thank you for reading this.