Does your house need a facelift? Although old homes are often beautiful and interesting and filled with a historic charm that cannot be replicated, they also suffer from practical problems. As much as you might love your home’s old windows, for example, are they eco-friendly? Do they keep out the cold on freezing winter nights? Although you may adore the aging architecture and design details, is your home structurally sound? How do you compromise your modern tastes with your love for the home’s historic authenticity? Today we’re discussing remodeling an old house, focusing on what to remodel, what to keep, and general tips for homeowners.
Remodeling an Old House
DO implement eco-friendly upgrades. Don’t think of the green movement as a fad. Eco-friendly appliances and green remodeling will always be in style because, in addition to helping the environment, they also help homeowners save money. Examples of eco-friendly upgrades that you may want to install include energy-saving appliances, smart thermostats, and effective insulation.
DON’T destroy salvageable details. Many old homes come with beautiful, quality craftsmanship. Although these details may be looking a bit worn and dingy, try to restore them if you can. For example, hardwood can be stripped, sanded, stained, and refinished, and you can increase the efficiency of windows with weather stripping. If possible, try to save the floors, doors, windows, staircases, and woodwork.
DO save plaster surfaces. For both its character and strength, save original plaster wherever possible. New drywall lacks many of plaster’s benefits, including soundproofing, insulation, and historic authenticity. Plus, the plaster is already there! Saving your home’s plaster surfaces is the greener and cheaper choice.
DON’T rush the selection of materials, colors, and finishes. You will undoubtedly want your new remodeling elements to mesh well with your old home. So take your time. Be patient. Shop around. Bring photos to the design center and ask the store associates for help as you make your selections. Also, be sure to ask for samples that you can bring home, to ensure that your new products will complement your old home’s beauty.
DO focus on safety. Although vintage homes are often lovely to look at, they can come with a variety of safety issues. Before you start the remodeling process, hire a licensed and experienced professional to inspect the home for environmental and safety problems. Lead paint, asbestos, excess moisture, rotting wood, structural integrity, and features that don’t meet current building codes can all be a concern.
DON’T speed through the process. Before you rush into a major design overhaul, live in the house for a few weeks or months. Start with features you’re absolutely certain you want to change (for example, the HVAC system), but take your time with aesthetic design details. After you get used to the home’s size and personality, you’ll be in a better position to make remodeling decisions. You never know, you might grow to love the intimacy of the home’s closed floor plan or the charm of its antique tile floors.
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If you’re remodeling an old house, be sure to check out Curran Design Center, a small, family-owned and -operated business located in Nixa, Missouri. Our talented team of designers can help you remodel any room in your house, handling everything from kitchens and bathrooms to room additions and floor coverings. To learn more about our full service design center, please give us a call at 417-724-1018 or click here for a free consultation. We look forward to hearing from you!