Tips For Renovating An Old House

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An old home isn’t just a home – it holds numerous beautiful memories across various generations. Even if your home isn’t well kept and needs renovation, you wouldn’t want to live anywhere else because of these memories.

This is why you should consider renovating that house rather than selling it.

If you want to restore your home to its former glory or want to give it a new look, you will have to consider a variety of factors before you can start planning for the renovation. However, once you get done with it, you will enjoy living in the home even more.

So let’s go through the tips to see how you can renovate your old house effectively.

Things to Do Before You Start Renovating Your Old House

As mentioned, some aspects have to be kept in mind before you can go about planning and executing the renovation. These are small things, but they can have a huge effect on your project.

Here are some things you should do:

  1. Take Note of Your Expectations: Before starting the renovation, make sure to note your expectations from the project, i.e., how you want your house to look. It is always best to maintain a mindset that covers every aspect of renovating your old house. Also, understand the purpose of each step you are taking. For instance, is your goal to make the house look beautiful, or do you want to make it more roomy, bright, or warm?
  2. Don’t Be Afraid to Take Help: Home renovation contractors are specialists in their field and have many years of experience under their belt. This means they know a tad more about renovation than you, and you can seek their consultation in the planning phase.

By doing this, you can get rid of much of the clutter of ideas you have and give the solid ideas more clarity. Plus, a contractor will guide you every step of the way, including costs.

  1. Spend Time on the Design: When you renovate your house, you’ll be aiming for something you don’t have to change for the next 10-15 years. So make sure you spend most of your time in its design and architecture phase.

Even if you are not changing the house’s layout too much, get in touch with an architect or designer, and explain to them what you are looking to do with your house. They will convert your “basic ideas” into design concepts and even show you how the house will look.

  1. Get Your Permissions in Order: If you plan to extend the square footage of your house, you will require permission from the local building authorities. This step should always be taken care of well in advance, so you don’t have officials standing at your doorstep as soon as work begins. Make sure to do your research and get every document in order before you start renovating your house.
  2. Gather Your Funds: If you have the resources to finance the renovation project yourself, you need to make sure they are fully accessible. On the other hand, if you are taking a loan from the bank, you will also have to plan out the repayments so you don’t miss out on them while you are working on the house.
  3. Spare no Detail: When you explain your requirements and wishes to a contractor or home renovation professional, no detail is too small. They need to know everything that is going on in your head, so they can translate it into handyman’s terms and get on with their work.

You may have some excellent renovation ideas, but they are of no use unless you are taking the DIY route until they aren’t shared with a professional.

Things to Check Before Starting a New Renovation Project

If your house has never been renovated before, chances are it has many faults and weak points that need to be addressed. We always recommend employing a professional for this step, as you are never well-equipped enough to check out the underlying structure and features of your home.

  • Check the Wiring – The number one thing that you should do is to get the electrical system checked. Old wiring can be brittle and melt easily. This can pose a fire hazard for you and your old home, so it is always wise to start with the electrical system.

If there are any broken or damaged power outlets, fuse boxes, or the wiring is old and broken in places, then you need to completely install a new system.

  • Check the Plumbing System – Another thing that needs your attention inside your old home is the plumbing system. If your house is old, there may be steel pipes inside, which can corrode and develop cracks and leaks.

This means you simply can’t go on living like this, and you can get them inspected by an expert, who will be able to tell you what needs to be changed.

  • Check for Any Rotten Parts – No matter how strong or durable your house is, its structure can get weakened due to rotting wood. Therefore, you can hire a contractor and have them check every corner of the house to see if any parts are rotten and need to be removed completely. This way, you won’t have to worry about the structural integrity of your old home.

Ways to Save Money on Renovating Your Old House

You must be worried about renovation costs, which is why you always stop your renovation project in the middle of planning. There is no need to worry because there are some ways in which you can easily cut costs while remodeling your old home. Let’s have a quick look at them.

  • Prevent Extending Your House – One of the major renovation costs is when you extend your house to increase the liveable area. This requires stripping down the walls, putting in new foundations, and many other steps that can cost you serious money. So, it is best to try to stay within your budget and see what you can manage.
  • Use Recycled Materials – Another wonderful way to save money is to use recycled materials in your renovation project, which allows you to buy the same quality products and materials at excellent prices. For instance, if a new window costs $500, you might be able to find the same product at a recycling center for $200!
  • Recycle the Materials – When your old home is being renovated, many materials and waste will make a big mountain outside your home. This will eventually end up in a landfill, so you can be smart and give this to a recycling center. Not only will it help in combating climate change, but it will also mean that somebody else like you will be able to buy recycled products for their home.
  • Handle the Demolition – You may not be able to do much in the renovation project, but why not try and do the demolition yourself? After taking all of the safety precautions, you can start tearing down the house on your own. This will help you save hundreds of dollars that would otherwise go to the contractors.
  • Don’t Uproot the Kitchen or Bathroom – Your kitchen and bathrooms have a lot of plumbing underneath them, so even if you are redesigning them, make sure to leave the fittings where they are. If you move the sink even by a few inches, you will be spending a lot more money.

Common Mistakes Made by People When Renovating an Old House

Even if you don’t live in an old house, you might be tempted to buy an older property and remodel it, as this seems to be the cheaper and more affordable option than buying an already remodeled home. However, there are some common mistakes people often make, such as:

  • Not Looking at Previous Plans – If you are looking to buy an old home, it may have been constructed decades ago. This means it has a whole lot of history you need to be concerned about. Before you start tearing it apart, you need to look at old maps or blueprints of the house to determine any considerations you need to make.
  • Going the DIY Way – People are all about trying out DIY projects in this new era, but renovating your old home shouldn’t be one of them. First of all, a lot is going on beneath the interior of an old house you may not be aware of. This is something only an expert can properly guide you. Plus, it can be dangerous for you to work on the old wiring and plumbing systems.
  • Choosing Materials That Won’t Last – Not all building materials are made to last hundreds of years, like wood and metal. If you plan on swapping out the wooden windows and doors with something more affordable, then you will be spending money on them every 5 to 10 years, whereas wood can last for 100 years before needing replacement.

What to Keep Inside your Old Home?

Antique and old homes have a lot of beautiful elements that can be kept and preserved. These will add to the beauty of your renovated house. Here are some things you can keep inside your home:

  1. Flooring: Some of the older homes have solid hardwood floors that are good to last a lifetime. So all you need to do is to inspect them for any water or mold damage. If they are good, you can simply replace the carpets and save yourself some money.
  2. Fireplaces: If you have a fireplace inside your old home, it can be preserved and made a part of your newly renovated house. There is nothing better than lighting a fire to keep yourself warm. Plus, it also adds to the aesthetic appeal and value of your home.
  3. Windows: Fifty or hundred-year-old windows give you a nostalgic feeling. So you should keep them as they are and simply give them a new coat of paint if required.
  4. Trim and Molding: If your home has its original molding and trim, you can preserve it by just getting it sanded and refinished. This way, it’ll match the color of stain you want to go for. These elements are the highlights of any antique home and will work wonders for your decor.

How to Find Renovation and Paint Experts?

Now that you have a complete picture of renovating your old house, it is time to hire a contractor and pour out your ideas. Not only will it save you a lot of time and money, but it will help you achieve the closest picture of your dream home.

If you are actively searching for renovation experts, it is time to put your trust in Renovate Residential. We have more than 25 years of experience in renovating and remodeling homes for clients in the Southeastern Massachusetts area.

Why the wait? Pick up the phone and give us a call. We are always ready to hear from you!

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