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Tips for Gothic homes

Your Gothic home has nothing to do with the dark and sinister world of the historical Goths and only a little bit to do with the original period of Gothic architecture in the 1500s. Unless you live in a castle or an ancient cathedral (one never knows these days,) your house is probably neo-gothic or gothic revival style.

Bricks and diamond patterns

The most common examples of gothic homes have large sections of brick walls, usually in two or more colors. The walls, floors and walkways may have zigzag or diamond patterns. Pointed arches, columns and so-called arrow slits serve as echoes of the old castle and cathedral days.

Your gothic building probably has lots of roof area to worry about since multiple peaks, known as gables, were part of the architecture of the style. However, let's look to the brickwork first when we do our troubleshooting.

Is your foundation wall made of bricks? Take a slow and careful walk around the entire building. Push back shrubs and bushes where necessary. If you see even a small pocket of loose mortar between bricks, mark it carefully.


The repair you need to perform is called tuck-pointing. It consists of using a hooked mortar rake to clean the mortar out of the loose joint. Make sure to leave a clean, smooth face on the remaining mortar between the bricks. Now you can fill the space with a commercial preparation called type-N mortar. Fill with layers of about a quarter inch each and let them sit for a few minutes before you add the next layer.
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