Restoring a historic building is a complex and often costly project. We would all enjoy bringing an old property back to its former glory, but that process is never easy. When you’re essentially fighting against time, you’re going to face a pitfall or two. Renovation mistakes can be incredibly expensive, causing further damage to the property, and even decreasing its value. That is why you must be aware of them. Here are six mistakes to avoid when restoring a historic building.

1. Starting Without A Plan

Historic home renovations usually don’t go to plan. However, that is typically because there wasn’t a plan, to begin with. Many homeowners question the need to waste time and money on the planning process, so skip it entirely. The trouble is, this mistake will only result in more time and money wasted. Without a plan to work from, you’ll face many more errors along the way.

2. Applying Poor Waterproof Coating

Older buildings are often viewed as more fragile than they really are. While waterproofing a historic property sounds like a good idea, doing so could cause more harm than good. After all, many older homes were built in a way that minimises water damage. Applying a modern waterproof coating could force moisture into the wood and masonry, with disastrous results.

3. Missing Protected Species Surveys

According to UK laws, any renovations that might disturb a protected species or its habitat are a criminal offence. That is why you should get in touch with a consultancy agency, like Arbtech Consulting Ltd. Having protected species surveys carried out is an essential step in obtaining planning permission, especially on older properties. Missing this step is very rarely an option.

4. Choosing The Wrong Paint

Painting is an essential part of property maintenance and upkeep, particularly with older buildings. Choosing poor-quality paint for your restoration won’t have the results you desire. After investing in the right paint, you must also prepare the surface properly. Make sure you completely clean the area of dirt, dust, and mildew, and add an underlying primer, or the paint won’t stick.

Mistakes To Avoid When Restoring A Historic Building


5. Replacing Any Original Windows

The replacement of an original wood window will always detract from the architectural character of any historical building. Any windows built before the 1950s are often made of old-growth wood. This means that, with proper repair and maintenance, they can last indefinitely. Replacing these windows with vinyl won’t have the same effect and could leave you paying out more on repairs.

6. Expecting To Flip Quickly

Real estate can certainly be a lucrative business. Unfortunately, historic buildings aren’t the easiest to flip. Older properties require more planning and restoration than is common in the investor market. The process of restoring a historic building can easily exceed a year and might require an entire team. Flips shouldn’t take that long, making the two processes incompatible.

Restoring a historic building is an exciting yet highly complex process. Hopefully, with the tips above, you can avoid making any mistakes.

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