There were three different Ryan Homes neighborhoods near where we wanted to live. We didn't like one of them for scenic reasons (cell phone tower). Of the other two, one was cheaper and was more expensive mainly because of the school district and location. Since we really didn't mind either, we thought why not go for the cheaper one.
We looked at a couple of lots and prices for the lots that were left in the cheaper neighborhood. Of the few lots that were left, there were two lots that were big enough for a back yard. Only thing about them was their backyards were butted up to other backyards. We figured it would be okay with a fenced in yard and we could live with it.
We left to go think about it and think about exactly what we wanted in the house. I also looked at the specials going on in the different neighborhoods on their website. For the less expensive neighborhood their was a special for a fireplace using NVR, their mortgage company. For the more expensive neighborhood, the special was for a free morning room using NVR. In the back of my mind I wondered could we exchange the morning room for cash towards other options we wanted, but my husband seemed to think that wouldn't be the case.
About a week later we went back to get it all priced out with everything we wanted. After we were done getting it priced out, I asked if their were any lot specials going on. He told us that there was one at the more expensive neighborhood for $2,000 off the lot. He said most of the lots over there cost $2,500-$10,000 extra. I then remembered the special about the morning room and asked if we could use the credit for other things instead of the morning room. To our surprise, he said yeah we could do that. He asked if we wanted him to price it out for that lot in the other neighborhood and we said why not lets just see what it could cost us. It ended up being a couple hundred dollars cheaper then the first neighborhood!!! We were so happy: same house, better neighborhood, better schools, and a little cheaper!!
To top it all off this lots backyard was facing a side road outside the neighborhood, which means no neighbors behind us. This also meant a busier road behind us. They are putting up trees and a hill for the noise and the street was only a 35 mph street and not a main route to anywhere. With a fence we thought it would be perfect! We just hoped the noise would be okay and that the road wasn't too busy. We went and checked the lot out and realized we could definitely make that work and liked it better than being behind other houses. We gave them a lot deposit to hold it while we thought about it for 5 more days and eventually went back to take it! Here's a pretty good picture of our lot (the road is behind the hill and those houses are condos in the neighborhood across the street):