One of the most sought-after states for residents is Florida. It is the third most populous state in the country and has the seventh-fastest growth rate. The Sunshine State attracts visitors for various reasons, like its tropical climate and the vibrance of its cities like Miami, Orlando, and Tampa.

If you intend to relocate to Florida, you can purchase an existing home or construct one on your own.

Understanding the differences between spec and custom homes is crucial before you build a house or buy one to choose the best option for your family and your budget. With such a significant purchase, we all want to be confident that we are making the right choice.

Here is a summary of the main distinctions between spec homes and custom homes to assist you in deciding which is best for you.


What are Spec Homes?


Spec homes (or speculative homes) are newly constructed homes typically sold to the buyer after they have been built or when they are almost finished.

A spec home builder typically buys the land before beginning construction to sell it for a profit. As a result, the builder will pick a home plan that will appeal to a large pool of potential buyers who might use the same plan for more than one construction.

Most of the time, the buyer has little to no say in how the house is built. Occasionally, if the property is bought early in the building process, the builder may permit the buyer to change the home’s finishes and design. However, these are typically only minor changes to keep costs down and ensure the build goes as planned.


Pros of Spec Homes


Choosing a spec home has its benefits, such as:

        • Spec homes are frequently much more cost-effective when compared to custom homes.
        • The predetermined plan helps home buyers know exactly what they are purchasing.
        • Spec homes are frequently move-in ready, allowing for a quick transition.
        • Spec homes may offer distinctive designs and styles without the custom cost.
        • You won’t have to deal with contractors, schedules for construction, or city permits.

A house’s construction is stressful. There is a lot to juggle between managing the people and the materials. This can be avoided by just buying a spec home. It might also be the best option for those unsure of what they want in a home or who need a place to move into right away.


Cons of Spec Homes


Spec homes are among the market’s better options for starter homes, but there are still some disadvantages to think about before choosing one:

        • Beyond the floor plan, many finishes, lighting fixtures, and paint colors are also predetermined in a spec home, so there is no room for customization or changes to the design.
        • Compared to other housing options, amenities might not be as upscale.
        • Despite being brand new, a home inspection is still necessary to ensure it is in good condition.

Homebuyers must conduct their due diligence before committing to the purchase because they have less control over a spec home.


What are Custom Homes?


When building custom homes in Palm City, the homebuyer frequently comes to the builder with a plan they have chosen or an architect has drawn up for them. They usually have a clear vision of how they want their home to look and what materials they want to use.

When building a custom home, the homebuyer typically controls all significant decisions. They select the materials that will be used on the inside and outside. Instead of selecting materials from a list provided by the builder, they choose their own and set the budget.

A custom home allows you to design the home of your dreams. You can mix and match all the elements to suit your preferences. You can also change the structure by adding or removing rooms or making certain areas larger or smaller.


Pros of Custom Homes


When weighing your home-buying options in Florida, you should consider the cost of building vs. buying. However, price is not the only consideration. There are several advantages to building a home that draw many people to this option. Among the many reasons are:

        • You have complete control over the design of your home.
        • You have complete control over the build quality. In addition to ensuring that the plumbing and electrical work is done correctly, you can invest in high-quality appliances and materials that complement your design style.
        • You are not required to make any changes once the work is completed. Most buyers move into a home and begin remodeling it. With a custom home, your place is ready for you to move in.
        • You can create a home for yourself. For example, create additional rooms if you intend to have children or build a guest room.
        • You can tailor your property to your specific requirements. For example, you can create a home office, a playroom for the kids, or a large kitchen, depending on your needs.

Building a custom home is the best option if you intend to live in it for a long time. You can select a layout that will serve you well for decades, regardless of how your family’s needs change.


Cons of Custom Homes


The following are the major disadvantages of purchasing a custom home:

        • The price is the biggest drawback. Typically, first-time buyers cannot afford a custom-built home due to the higher price.
        • As a result of starting from scratch, construction may be more time-consuming and subject to delays.
        • Finding a suitable lot may take longer than anticipated and cost more money.




Whether it’s a custom or spec home, the best residence depends on how much input you want in the design. If you are passionate about the floor plan and have unique needs or design ideas, the best option for you is a custom home.

However, if you want to eliminate the guesswork and decision-making from home design, a spec home may be a slightly more affordable option. Lastly, if you are a first-time homebuyer or don’t have a specific design, a spec home may be your best option.

Beyond aesthetics, each type of home features a unique price range. For this reason, it is essential to determine your budget in advance to ensure that you only consider affordable options. Understanding the cost differences between a custom home and a spec home will help you to narrow down your options and stay within budget.

Some builders, though, believe that you cannot put a price on a custom-built home.




Are you still weighing the pros and cons of a custom-built home versus a spec home, or looking to learn more about your options? No worries! Homes by Aburton has an extensive resume when it comes to home construction. We offer everything from custom homes in Palm City to renovations. Contact us at 772-446-4576 if you need help understanding your options.