We have done a couple renovations but our expertise lies within the new construction world so far and although we would like the opportunity to do more renovation projects in the future, there seems to be a reason we go back to building new when the market is right (when the market offers lower building costs vs. high value).
1. Better layouts, overall designs and functionality
A good layout design goes a long way on the property enjoyment scale. One of the reasons people look to move is because they just hate the layout of their home. Yes we could change the layout design during a rehab too but it usually never ends up as perfect as a new build and if it does, it usually means gutting everything to the bones.
2. Energy efficiency
Keeping the utility costs as low as possible is a huge bonus in any home. Thanks to the building code constantly improving, the newer the home the less effort it takes to keep it comfortable. If utilities are cheaper, our tenants are likely going to want to stay longer.
3. Low maintenance It's no secret that a newer home will be less maintenance than an older one. Less things are likely to break or need changing. It's just the first week after construction that we usually get a few calls from our tenants for things that need adjusting. After that everything runs smoothly with few maintenance requests until about the 5th year where we notice things start to need some tune up, but usually it's nothing major.
4. Knowing exactly what's behind each wall It truly helps us a lot to better service maintenance issues when we know exactly what's where and why it was put there to start. There's just zero guessing games and it makes trouble shooting a lot easier.
5. Purposely built This applies especially when building multi families. It’s nice having full control of the important stuff like the fire and sound separation between units, or of each unit having their own meters, their own mechanical systems and their own entrances. There is less conflict and it just makes everything generally easier to manage.
6. No inherited tenants To this day we haven’t yet had to inherit someone else’s tenants because our properties have always been empty while acquiring them. Managing tenants that we didn’t get a chance to screen ourselves, not knowing anything about them or how they would treat a new landlord or a property is not really something we have interest in learning to manage. Although if we came across a good deal we may not let this stop us, but so far we have just been spoiled by this concept.
7. We help with the housing shortage
Canada in general seems to be facing a housing shortage. Every province has their challenge and here in Ontario affordable housing is becoming increasingly scarce. We help scale up that supply by building new units right outside the capital city. We try to keep our rental rates more affordable than the competition (depending on our costs of build) while still providing a beautiful, safe and clean home.