Many new home builders are now entering into a business model that is more streamlined but less flexible for the buyer. The first time I saw this approach was when Lennar came into the local market several years ago.
Now this is not a bad thing, but buyers looking for a lot of flexible customization in their new home should be aware that Builders like Lennar and Express by D.R. Horton are seeking to minimize the changes to the basic plan including very limited options on color and trim. This allows them to order in mass a small selection of trim outs, and keep costs low. Often this business model will have an A and B selection on color/tone and that is about it.
The upside to this type of approach is that the buyer will typically find a sharp price on a comparable home to a 'full service' type builder such as the tradition D.R. Horton or locals like New Traditions. It isn't a question of one being better than the other it is a concern that new home buyers realize that they have limited choices on these streamline building models.
Personally I like to have some choice in the decor and trim of a new house. It has always been one of the advantages to buying new over resale. Of course for many the idea of a new house is more about having everything brand new and not having to deal with a copious number of problems early in the experience.
It is truly a matter of preference. If you want a brand new house at price that could be 3-5% lower than a comparable property in a tradition development, then one of these newer business models could be ideal for you. If you want to have near 'Carte Blanche' on things like kitchen counter tops, carpet and flooring choices and other trim out features then sticking with a development running the classic business model may be best for you.
Whichever style suits you, make sure you understand the terms and choices before entering into a contract with a builder. Most problems that people experience could be avoided with by simply taking extra time to fully understand the offer from the builder.
As a local Realtor® I enjoy the multitude of opportunities to help my clients with a variety of different business models in various developments in and around Clark County.