I love old homes. There is something comforting about something that’s been there for a long time. It gives you a sense of permanence. Not to mention, they charm your socks off every time you walk past them. But living in a historic home comes with its own challenges, especially when it comes time to remodel. But have no fear, y’all. My dos and don’ts of renovating a historic home are here!
Check Local Ordinances
Here’s the thing about living in a historic home—it’s not a house, it’s a national treasure. Because of that, your community may have rules about what you can and can’t do when renovating your historic home. For example, they may be fine with you fixing the cracked paint, but they may be touchy about you knocking out some walls for a very non-Victorian open floor plan. Call up city hall before touching any hammers.
Update Old Electrical and Plumbing
This is the one not-so-charming thing about historic housing. Pipes are prone to burst in the winter, and the electricity may go out if you turn on a hair dryer. And I like my hair dryer. If your house’s electricity and plumbing aren’t up to snuff, you’ll want to take care of that. Otherwise, you’re just asking for a fire hazard or flooding.
DIY Things You Shouldn’t DIY
Nothing is more satisfying than rolling up your sleeves and taking care of a job yourself (other than a snuggle on the couch with my pooch). It saves a boatload of money. But messing up a remodeling job costs more money than calling a contractor in the first place. And y’all might damage an irreplaceable part of history. Take a sober assessment of your skills before electing to DIY something.
Bury Your House’s Character
I’m not saying y’all have to pick old-timey floral furniture and leave up the decrepit wallpaper. But when you sit down to plan out what you want your home to look like, don’t forget where your house came from. Embrace the sweeping architecture of yesteryear or the woodwork that made you love your house in the first place. Remember, your home is a national treasure. Embrace it!