Is Historic Preservation Trending in Home Interior Design?

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Is Historic Preservation Trending in Home Interior Design?

Interior design trends come and go. Chances are, you’re not going to find green shag carpet from the ’70s in someone’s home today (thank goodness some trends fade for good!). But, what’s old can sometimes become new again. Certain trends are recycled or brought back to life for a variety of reasons.

One trend that is currently seeing a huge surge in popularity is historic preservation. You can chalk it up to home design shows on HGTV, inspirational boards on Pinterest, or just pictures and before/after reveals all over social media.

Whatever the reason, more people are seeing the value in home restoration and preservation. Many want to keep the historical elements of an old house intact rather than gutting the whole thing.

But, if this is truly a “trend,” can you expect it to stick around? What’s the value of restoring a historical home, and what should you expect?

Understanding and Increasing Value

It’s not uncommon for historical houses to be “diamonds in the rough,” allowing buyers to purchase them at a low listing price so they can restore them to their natural glory. But, that isn’t the case with every old home. To have a better understanding of what a property is worth, consider some of the following:

  • The existing foundation and what it’s made of
  • Quirky aspects of the home
  • Craftsmanship and details
  • Original colors, textures, and materials

If the home needs remodeling, there are things you can do to add value while keeping some of the historic charms. Some of the best improvement projects that can boost overall value include adding a bathroom, converting the attic space, remodeling the kitchen, and improving energy efficiency.

Things like new windows, a new HVAC system, and even new wiring can often be necessary repairs and improvements to historic homes, especially when it comes to keeping them safe. If you’re interested in a classic piece of Southern architecture, for example, you might need to make renovations that properly prepare the property for natural disasters like hurricanes and flooding. Things like sealing cracks in the foundation and adding retaining walls can make a big difference.

What to Know Before Preserving a Home

If you’ve fallen in love with the bones of an old home and it’s got a great listing price, you might be tempted to jump in right away with your sledgehammer. But, there are a few things to keep in mind before you put a lot of time, effort, and money into a home restoration. Before you start any rehabilitation, check the following off your list:

  • Research the building’s history
  • Identify interior elements
  • Assess what needs to be altered
  • Pay attention to any deterioration
  • Draw up plans

You also should consider any potential challenges you might face along the way, including planning and adjusting your budget for any unexpected repairs, and working with your local historical commission. There may be some things within the home that can’t be changed. A historical commission group can guide you through those things, but it can be a lengthy process. It’s also a good idea to work with a contractor and home inspector. They’re trained to see potential risks or problems that you might not discover on your own.

Is Historic Preservation a Lasting Trend?

Historic homes are becoming popular again for a reason. People love the charm, the attention to detail, and the comforting, familiar feel of an old house. But, is it a lasting trend, or is it something that will lose its luster after a while?

It’s hard to pin down an answer. While many home trends don’t last long, it seems that historic restoration gets a boost in popularity every few years. The most important thing is to decide if it’s the right option for you.

There are some aspects of a historic home that will undoubtedly seem outdated, and may not even appeal to you. For example, many modern homes have open-space concepts, and whether you have a larger family or just like the feel of more space, that’s a trend that’s not going away any time soon. Many historical homes are known for having multiple rooms, but those rooms aren’t necessarily that spacious.

You can keep the charm and integrity of an older home while increasing your space with just a few small changes, like:

  • Getting creative with storage options
  • Installing shelves
  • Investing in multi-use furniture

You can also choose to tear down walls in certain areas to increase the size of certain rooms. That’s obviously a bigger undertaking, but it doesn’t necessarily have to take away from the “older” appeal of the home. It may even make it feel more luxurious, like a Victorian mansion.

Historic preservation is absolutely a hot trend. But, because of the comfort and charm of old homes, it’s a trend that is likely to stick around – even if it becomes mixed with modern touches. Take the details into consideration and recognize all that goes into home restoration before deciding if it’s right for you. But, don’t be afraid to take on a historic project if bringing an old home to life is something you’ve always wanted to do.

Historic Preservation: What Are the Most Necessary Renovations & Updates?

Historic preservation is a rewarding experience that requires a love of history and an understanding of design. Before you begin the journey, it’s essential to assess what to renovate or update and what to leave alone. That largely depends on the state of the property, but there are universal rules to follow and factors to consider when you tackle a period house.

The Exterior Part of the Equation

The exterior of the house or building is one of the most important aspects of the property. Many of the exterior details likely caught your attention and drew you to the property in the first place. The last thing you want to do is update the house so much that you eliminate historic nostalgia or the details that drew your eye in the first place.

Before beginning to renovate or update the building, it’s wise to check out the rest of the neighborhood, as well. Typically, all of the buildings and homes in a historic neighborhood will have a similar aesthetic. Stucco siding or an unsightly deck could take away from the cohesiveness of the entire neighborhood. Inasmuch as you can, try to preserve the facade of the house as it applies to roofing, siding, and wood or wrought ironwork.

That being said, you can work with historic architects and designers to update features in a way that retains the structure’s authenticity. Updating a property doesn’t necessarily have to mean that you have to change the way it looks. You can simply upgrade certain items with modern equivalents made to look like the originals. You can also seek out authentic features from the original time period.

 

Let There Be LightThe lighting in older houses often leaves something to be desired. Owners of historic properties are then at a loss. Do you preserve the original appearance of the interior, or do you illuminate the space with modern lighting that may be too bright?

Fortunately, those aren’t the only choices any longer. Many new, modern lights resemble vintage lighting options. You can always preserve the look of the lighting by opting for antique fixtures. Failing that, you can also invest in new fixtures that are deliberately designed to have a vintage patina.

The same is true for light bulbs. You don’t necessarily want to outfit your home with old-fashioned filament bulbs, which blow out frequently and are costly to upkeep. However, it’s possible to maintain an old look while using eco-friendly light bulbs. If you enjoy the charming appearance of an authentic Edison bulb, for example, you can light up your home with LED equivalents that come in a variety of color temperatures and brightness. That goes for period-inspired outdoor lighting, as well.

Pairing Safety and Historic Accuracy

 Replacing door knobs and locks causes debate among preservationists and people who are interested in renovating historic properties. The hardware on exterior doors is often gorgeous, not to mention indicative of the period. Regrettably, it can be faulty, as well. You’re left to decide if you want to risk a malfunctioning door lock or install new, glaringly modern knobs—right?

That’s the thought, but you needn’t go to extremes. Even if it means adding an additional lock and saving the original knob, you can carefully select a style and finish that evokes the time period and matches both the existing hardware and the overall appearance of the door.

Check the Pipes

 Water damage is a disaster in historic spaces. No matter what, make sure you check the pipes. Peer up at the ceilings and tap on the walls to assess possible water damage, as well. There’s no need to stick to authentic antique pipes. Upgrade for the sake and safety of the house.

Bathroom and Kitchen Updates

Most historic homeowners and preservationists agree that the bathroom(s) and kitchen are the rooms often in need of updating, but this can be a matter of preference. Plenty of folks appreciate kitchens and bathrooms with original features and fixtures, such as farmer’s sinks or 1920s tile. In that case, you can still update your space. Search for preserved and refurbished appliances and decor to install in your home.

Otherwise, feel free to upgrade where you see fit. You may crave a glass-enclosed shower over an old clawfoot tub. The kitchen may be crying out for a dishwasher. As long as you strive to maintain the integrity of the architecture and introduce period-appropriate decor and knickknacks inside, you can embrace modern conveniences in the rooms that need them most.

What do you choose to retain and renovate when you take on a historic property? Let us know the features you try to keep and what you prefer to replace.

Author Bio: Katie Tejada is a writer, editor, and former HR professional. She enjoys writing about events, travel, decorating trends, and innovations for the home, but also covers developments in HR, business communication, recruiting, real estate, and finance.

Getting Real: What’s The Deal With “Curb Appeal”?

Once you get your house hunt on, you’ll undoubtedly start hearing lots of terms getting thrown around. From “pre-approval” to “closing costs”, it can be tough to suss out exactly what all of these things mean, especially if it’s your first time looking for a home.

This time, we’re tackling “curb appeal.” Everyone kinda gets it, but really, uh…what is it? No matter if you’re just starting out or have been on the market for a bit, sometimes a little clarity can go a long way.

What is curb appeal, exactly?

Simply put, it’s a first impression.

Like it or not, the way that a home looks from the street can have a huge impact on our overall opinion of it. Similarly to how you would put your best foot forward on a first date or job interview, homeowners–especially those in the market for a buyer–often put extra effort into making their home’s exterior look good.

In real estate terms, curb appeal can be anything that adds either functional or aesthetic value to a home’s exterior. As the buyer, you’ll want to factor these types of details into your home search. As you look at listings, make sure to keep an eye out for elements of curb appeal and to make a note of how they sway your opinion on the home.

That being said, it’s important to keep a balanced perspective. Sometimes curb appeal is not indicative of what a home will look like once you head inside, so it should never be used as your single determining factor for whether or not it’s worth taking a look at a home.

Key factors to look for

Now that you know what curb appeal is, it’s time to get a little deeper into the different elements that go into creating a home that is aesthetically pleasing from the outside.

Typically, these items can be divided into a couple of different categories. They are:

  • Structural Items: Be sure to take a look at the condition of things like the home’s roof, gutters, and siding. While aesthetics are good to have, functionality is arguably more important. Evaluate if these items look well-maintained or if they will probably require some work to get up to snuff.
  • Landscaping: How does the overall landscaping look? Has the lawn been mowed recently? Are there any trees or bushes that look like they may need pruning? Did the seller put effort into decorative landscaping with flowers and plants? Landscaping upgrades and maintenance can both add up.
  • Functional Elements: If the home has any functional elements like a pathway to the front door or exterior lights, take a moment to evaluate those, as well.
  • The Entryway: The last element of curb appeal is the entryway. Ideally, the front door will look especially inviting. Has the front door been freshly painted? Are the address numbers predominantly displayed?

Again, these elements shouldn’t make or break your decision on whether or not to make an offer on the home. However, as you look at a property, it’s a good idea to take these factors into account since if you do decide to make an offer, they’ll be inputs into deciding what’s a fair offer price.

Consider the costs

At its core, curb appeal is actually a financial matter. One way or another, improved curb appeal does come with a cost.

A home that looks better from the outside will likely fetch a higher sale price than one without any of these small touches. However, if you decide to buy a property without these small touches, you may need to pay for them in the long run.

If you do decide to go with a property that’s a bit more of a fixer-upper, keep in mind that you don’t have to take care of everything all at once.

While some of the projects listed above are smaller, things like roofing and professional landscaping can end up costing thousands of dollars.

We suggest doing your research and budgeting carefully before undertaking any DIY projects.

But, boosting curb appeal also boosts equity. If you do decide to invest in some of these projects and improve the look and function of your home over time, you should see that benefit come back to you when you re-sell it. You’ll also find that you’ll take pride in enjoying your investment throughout the duration of your time in the home.

This article originally appeared on OpenListings.

Custom Floor Designs for Your Homes

 

Home is a place where we spend our whole live, so it needs to be beautifully decorated by beautiful flooring. Choosing floor design is a tough task as every home has different elements to see so you will require different floor design for every different home. Nowadays people look to create beautiful homes using various innovations and the introduction of modern-day art and technology in their homes. The most pivotal of them is the flooring. Custom floor designs have become the latest trend in the renovation sector where people from all around the world look to renovate their flooring with various materials rather the traditional method of mortar and bricks.

To Start Off, We Would Say There Are So Many Floor Designs You Can opt from –

  1. Wooden flooring in different hues
  2. Carpeted floorings
  3. Ceramic tile floorings
  4. Marble floorings
  5. Bamboo floorings
  • Wooden Hardwood floorings inhues of light, medium and dark hues have been the most custom floor design in demand. Modern day homes are generally a blend of traditional furniture with modern amenities. Hardwood wooden floorings generally match up really well with such colonial yet modern era homes. Wooden floorings with the correct hue to compliment the color on the walls help make a home look beautiful and luxurious.

Cost of Hardwood flooring varies from $3 for an unfinished oak to $12 for exotic varieties of wood per square feet.

Advantages – Easy maintenance and cleaning; the Resale value of the home increases

Disadvantage – Costly installation; higher price value of raw materials

  • Carpeting or Carpet flooringsis one of the favorite choices among custom floor designs for most homeowners. Floorings come in a wide variety of hues, textures, and patterns. Homeowners generally opt for end-to-end carpeting or carpet flooring. Carpeting provides a warm and homely feeling to the houses and adds a very welcoming tint to the house.

Advantages – Easy vacuuming; Soundproof

Disadvantages – Not stain free; prone to allergies

  • Ceramic tile flooring is the most convenient and durable choice for homeowners when it comes to custom floor designs. You can choose ceramic tiles flooring when you would want dust free, allergy free and water-resistant flooring. Ceramic flooring comes in glazed as well as matte finish depending on the quality of the ceramic tiles used.

Advantages – Easy Maintenance and durability

Disadvantages – Considerably high price; tiles are easy to crack when misused

  • Marble Flooringsamong custom floor designs offer a luxurious feeling to the homes. You can opt for Marble floorings if you wish to make your home look elegant, vibrant and luxurious. Marble these days comes in wide colors and can emit the natural aura of the house it is installed in.

Advantages – Unmatched beauty and luxury; increases resale value

Disadvantages – High maintenance; prone to cracks; hard to create a set match

  • Bamboo flooringis a very unconventional choice of custom floor design you can opt for. Bamboo flooring can provide a contemporary feel to the homes. It provides a feeling of the colonial era since good quality bamboo is as durable as hardwood

Advantages – Eco-friendly

Disadvantages – may be unsuitable for humid climates; non-resistant to water

Well now that you know what are various forms and varieties of custom floor designs you can opt for, why wait? Quickly rush to your nearest home renovation contractor and get yourself a quotation of the flooring you would love to do for your dream home. Building your own house is a dream and such beautiful and elegant custom floor designs make your dream a bit closer to reality.