It is important to strike the right balance between old-school appeal and modern energy efficiency. If you have purchased a historic home, you will understand how exhaustive the decision-making process can be on some of the things in the house. Whether to replace the old windows or not is one of the difficult decisions you need to take. Here are some things you should consider.
Maintaining the architectural integrity
The windows of your old home are designed to match the overall architecture of the house. These windows might be one-of-a-kind that was built just for the home. It may give a special connection between the outdoor of your house with the interior design. If you replace your historic windows with modern ones, then the overall architecture of the home may not look good. You may lose the connection to the past. If you think of reselling the home, the modern windows may deter the potential buyers from buying your home.
If your home is in a historic neighborhood or in a designated historic site, then there may be a rule that you cannot replace the windows. If you replace your old windows with the modern one, it may drastically change the exterior look and will create a historic irregularity.
Consider the payoff
Modern energy-efficient homes can save your energy bills, but the installation cost will be high. So, you may have to wait for many years to enjoy the savings. You should compare the costs and see which one is more cost effective. You can instead, replace the glass or fix any cracks or loose panes.
Historic windows are durable
Historic windows can last a long time. The materials used in their construction are very durable. These windows were designed to be repaired only, not replaced. So, you must rethink before replacing them.
All these factors must be taken into account before deciding whether to replace your old windows or not. It’s an important decision as it will affect the overall look of the house and the resale value of it. So, you should make a wise decision.
If you own a historic home and want to update it then you need some advice. It is hard to maintain old homes. Here are some tips from the professionals that can help you in renovating your historic home.
More time and money needed
Historic home renovation can cost more money and take more time than normal houses. Everything in the house needs to be custom-made. So, your budget needs to be high and you should be prepared for a long time it will take to finish the project.
Consider the regulations
If your house is listed on the historic register of if it’s a preservation district, then you need to check with the respective office for any restrictions on the renovation project. You need to follow their guidelines to renovate the house.
Expect the unexpected
Old homes are likely to have problems. These problems pop up suddenly. So, you need to keep the budget for this kind of surprises. It is wise to keep about 10% to 20% budget for these nasty surprises.
Asbestos and lead paint
In the past, people were not aware of the dangers of asbestos and lead paint, so these were widely used in building homes. You need to get rid of these before you start living in your historic home. You need to find a good contractor to do the job.
These tips are very important to remember when you start your historic home renovation project. It can help you overcome some of the major obstacles of historic home renovation.
Though a historic home renovation appears to be very simple, it is actually harder than you think. There are lots of things you need to consider. For example, stick to the historical preservation needs, use the current building codes, etc. You need to adhere to all the rules and regulations associated with renovating a historic home. When you are planning to renovate a historic home, you should consider the following things.
Identify what to keep, remove or change
You should first identify what to keep. Is there a historic artifact or interesting feature that you want to keep? Is there an item that needs to be protected during a historic home renovation? You should consider the options. Then identify things that you want to remove. For example, the wiring, pipes, structures, etc. that should be removed due to safety reasons. You can change some of the aspects of the house as well; for example, the doors and the windows. Make a decision regarding it.
See if the budget matches the funding
You will get fund for renovating historic homes. But you should see if your budget and the fund that you will receive matches or not. You should use item-by-item costs to come up with an accurate budget. You can take help from a previous project that was similar and make an approximate budget for the project. You should consider costs like taxes, permits, insurances, etc. in your budget as well.
Develop a schedule
You should develop a logical sequence of your works along with the duration of each task. Write a start and finish date. The task durations must not be more than two weeks. Otherwise, your project will be delayed. You should start the schedule with planning activities.
Creating a detailed plan will save you time and money. Historic home renovation is a complex process. You should follow your plan to complete the project on time.
When you decide to buy an old house, you may get into various difficulties. The design regulations of the old house are different than the modern ones. Many things that were allowed before in construction are no longer permissible. Use of lead and asbestos are such materials that are not allowed to be used in construction anymore due to their harmful properties. However, many old homes still have these. So, before you get into your historic home, you should remove these harmful components. Here are some of the things you should know about lead and asbestos.
Rules for working with lead
If you bought a house that was built before 1978, then you should assume that it has lead-based paint. According to the Renovation, Repair, and Painting (RRP) rules, any contractor that comes in contact with lead paint must complete a certification course. They must follow strict guidelines. This work is very labor intensive, time-consuming and expensive. If a plumber or anyone works on any project that includes more than 6 square feet of the lead-painted surface, then that person must wear an HEPA-filtered respirator. After finishing work, they must seal off the room and get rid of the debris. They should remove lead dust from their clothes, boots, tools, etc. that were in the workplace. If these rules are not followed then you will be fined by the authority.
Dangers of lead
Lead is poisonous and it can lead to chronic headaches and even brain damage. If children ingest paint chip or inhale lead dust then it could be dangerous for the children’s health.
If you find asbestos in your old home after doing a home inspection, then you should take steps to remove them. It can be found in the floor tiles. If you leave asbestos undisturbed, then it is not harmful. But for your peace of mind, you should get rid of them. It is necessary to seal the asbestos-contaminated rooms when removing them. You should scrape it off and dump it in a landfill that has a license to take care of asbestos. This clean up is also expensive.
You might have other problems like termites or mold in the old house. People who take care of the lead and asbestos problems also can fix the termite and mold issues. As lead and asbestos are toxic, you shouldn’t handle it yourself. You should hire a professional to do the job. You should remember that lead and asbestos are bad for your health. It is your duty to look after the well-being of yourself and your family. So, you should remove any trace of lead or asbestos from your old home.