Old homes have a certain charm that’s hard to match with a new build. This is especially true when they’re restored back to their former glory.
But we’ve all watched enough DIY reality TV shows to know that remodeling an older home isn’t as easy as it sounds. Historic houses were built with different materials and technologies than we use today. And while some have stood the test of time — many haven’t.
Every home is different and comes with its own flaws. But it is possible to add some modern comforts and style to your old home while maintaining its vintage character and charm.
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So if you’re planning to update or renovate your home, here are some tips to help you get started… and avoid turning your dream home into a money pit!
- Have realistic expectations. You may have bought your home because you love the classic fireplace and hardwood floors. But there’s a chance you’ll also be dealing with unevenly heated rooms, unlevel floors or other quirks. In some respects, that’s all part of owning an older home. So before you buy, make sure your expectations for restoration are realistic for your skills and budget.
- Set a budget. Even if you plan to retire in your renovated home, you should still view it as an investment. Start every project by setting a realistic budget and checking the prices of comparable homes in your neighborhood. This information will help you determine what needs replaced first and what features you can live without. And if you do have to move for any reason, you’ll avoid overextending yourself.
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- Prioritize repairs. It’s best to invest in practical repairs before tackling aesthetic upgrades. Roofs, windows and masonry are a great place to start. Repair these structures to keep water out and prevent damage later. Remember, ugly wallpaper is still less of an eyesore than a leaky roof.
- Know when to trust a professional. We all have varying levels of DIY prowess. Know your limits, and be careful you don’t get in over your head. Inspectors, contractors and other experts bring years of knowledge to the table.
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What’s more, they have access to tools and resources that can help you make the best decisions for remodeling your home. Paying a professional to do the job right can save a lot of money and headaches compared to a botched home repair.
- Over-restore. When modernizing your old home, resist the urge to redo everything. Original design features can be difficult to replicate, and they’re part of what makes your house unique. Many older materials will continue to perform while maintaining your home’s character, while unnecessary repairs and over-finishing cost more time and money.
Bringing an older home back to life is a big commitment — and a lot of work. But with Miller's, you can rest easy with insurance you can trust.
Miller's Insurance Agency wants you to sleep well at night, every night. And for us, that means you can feel secure about your home and the things you’ve worked so hard to get. So relax, knowing we’ve got you and your investment covered.
Ready to request a quote? Contact a local Miller's Insurance agent today.