Pros and Cons of Presale in the Real Estate Market

Pros and Cons of Presale in the Real Estate Market

In the realm of real estate, presale, or the act of purchasing a property before it is completed, has become increasingly prevalent. This practice offers both advantages and disadvantages for buyers, sellers, and developers alike. Understanding these pros and cons is crucial for anyone considering engaging in presale transactions.


  1. Potential for Lower Prices: One of the most enticing aspects of presale purchases is the opportunity to secure a property at a lower price compared to its eventual market value upon completion. Developers often offer discounted prices or special incentives to attract early buyers, making presale an attractive option for those looking to invest or purchase a property at a more affordable rate.

  2. Customization Options: Presale buyers typically have the advantage of customizing certain aspects of their property, such as finishes, fixtures, and sometimes even layout configurations. This level of personalization allows buyers to tailor the property to their preferences and lifestyle, creating a sense of ownership from the outset.

  3. Potential for Appreciation: In a market where property values are steadily increasing, purchasing a property during the presale phase can offer significant potential for appreciation. As the development progresses and the property nears completion, its value may rise, providing presale buyers with a built-in equity gain even before they take possession of the property.

  4. Extended Payment Period: Presale purchases often come with flexible payment plans, allowing buyers to spread out their payments over the construction period or even beyond the completion date. This extended payment period can ease the financial burden on buyers and provide them with more time to arrange financing or sell existing properties.

  5. Early Access to Desirable Locations: Presale opportunities often arise in burgeoning or sought-after neighborhoods where new developments are on the rise. By purchasing during the presale phase, buyers can secure properties in prime locations before they are widely available, giving them a competitive edge in the market.


  1. Potential Delays and Risks: One of the inherent risks of presale purchases is the possibility of construction delays or project cancellations. Delays can result from various factors such as permitting issues, construction setbacks, or unforeseen circumstances, leaving buyers waiting longer than anticipated to take possession of their property.

  2. Lack of Tangible Property: Unlike purchasing an existing property, presale buyers must rely on architectural plans, renderings, and sales pitches to envision their future home. This lack of a tangible property can make it challenging for buyers to accurately assess factors such as size, layout, and overall quality until the project nears completion.

  3. Market Fluctuations: The real estate market is inherently unpredictable, and economic fluctuations can impact the value of presale properties. While buyers may anticipate appreciation, there is always the possibility that market conditions could shift, resulting in slower appreciation or even depreciation of the property's value by the time of completion.

  4. Limited Room for Negotiation: Developers often set presale prices based on projected costs and market trends, leaving little room for negotiation compared to purchasing an existing property. Buyers may find themselves with less bargaining power when it comes to price concessions or upgrades, especially in competitive markets with high demand for presale properties.

  5. Potential Changes to Plans: Despite customization options, developers may make changes to the project plans or specifications during the construction process. While these changes are typically minor and within the developer's rights, they can be disappointing or inconvenient for presale buyers who had specific expectations for their property.

In conclusion, presale transactions in the real estate market offer both advantages and disadvantages for buyers, sellers, and developers. While presale purchases can provide opportunities for lower prices, customization, and potential appreciation, they also come with risks such as construction delays, market fluctuations, and limited negotiation power. As with any real estate investment, thorough research, careful consideration, and consultation with legal and financial advisors are essential for navigating the complexities of presale transactions and making informed decisions.

Reciprocity Logo The data relating to real estate on this website comes in part from the MLS® Reciprocity program of either the Greater Vancouver REALTORS® (GVR), the Fraser Valley Real Estate Board (FVREB) or the Chilliwack and District Real Estate Board (CADREB). Real estate listings held by participating real estate firms are marked with the MLS® logo and detailed information about the listing includes the name of the listing agent. This representation is based in whole or part on data generated by either the GVR, the FVREB or the CADREB which assumes no responsibility for its accuracy. The materials contained on this page may not be reproduced without the express written consent of either the GVR, the FVREB or the CADREB.