How New Does a House Have to be in Order to Market it as "New"?
I'm pretty sure that different Multiple Listing Services and State or local Realtor Associations have varying rules regarding what it takes to market a home for sale as "new". However, I'm not at all sure if agents are being supervised or schooled by their managing broker about when and how to use the term "new".
I viewed a home online yesterday which has been described by the listing agent as "new" or "newer" construction. The listing agent claims the house was built in 2011, but I remember showing the house shortly after it was listed at the beginning of June, 2011 and my impression was that construction had been completed in 2010. At any rate, the house appears to be three to four years old.
One nationwide brokerage defines a "new" home as one which was built within the past year and a half. I'm not aware of any new construction definitions which define a three-year-old home as new.
Agents need to police themselves on this issue, or Associations need to do so in the absence of good common sense. It is a disservice to the public to advertise a home as new when it is clearly not.