Buying an old house is normally a labour of love, not something to be taken on lightly by any means. The charm of most old houses is the fact that they are slightly out of date, that they have a “charm”, a sense of history that you just can’t find in many new build homes. However, if you decide to go this route and buy something older, you have to accept that it is likely to come with a host of issues.
You shouldn’t even consider buying an old property if you are afraid of doing some DIY (or of the cost of getting someone in to do it for you) as there aren’t many that come with central heating, double glazing and state of the art wiring – there are a few out there that have already been renovated, but in the view of the author, renovating your property is half the fun of buying an older house.
Employing a good surveyor will help you to work out what will need doing to the property, and once you have the list you can start to decide whether you will do most of the renovating yourself, or if you will hire in professionals to do it for you. Please note, that for some renovating, such as re-wiring a house, unless you are a properly qualified electrician, you will have to employ someone who is.
There are many are things that you can do both inside and outside of your home, that you can do yourself, for instance:
- Renovating Sash Windows
- Levelling un-even floors
- Repairing faulty doorknobs
- Repairing period flooring
- Re-aligning the guttering
- Restoring old fireplaces
- Renovating a tired kitchen/bathroom
- Repairing or replacing old plumbing
- Re-designing your garden – this could include installing a flower bed, rockery, or pond
- Cleaning natural stone features in your home.
In addition to the “big” things, there are all those small jobs that you may discover around your older home, like:
- Re-grouting window sills
- Draught-proofing traditional sash windows
- Repairing damaged timber
- Decorating to keep the period character of the house
- Treating any minor damp caused by leaky guttering
You may even decide that you want to update your home a little, maybe by installing underfloor heating, but you are wary of destroying the look of your property.
In this section of the website, you will find articles that may be useful when you are trying to decide if you are going to tackle renovating your older house yourself, or if you are going to hire a professional to do the renovating for you.