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Out with the Old in Renovating

Out with the Old in Renovating By Laura Horwitz
HIPhome Columnist
December 31, 1969

Buying an old house and renovating it can be a fun and satisfying project, but you should be aware, upfront, of the time and money involved. It's an ambitious project, but one that many find well worth it.

Starting Over is Exhausting

Buying an old house, tearing most of it down, and doing major renovation work requires significant time and financial commitments. You need to budget and plan for all the work including:

  • Demolition of  existing structures
  • Building of a new frame
  • Installation of  new plumbing
  • Wiring of new electric
  • Setting up a HVAC system
  • Insulating the whole house
  • Plastering and all the final fixtures

Phew, it's exhausting just thinking about it!

Many people love this process, however, and are thrilled with the results. You get the beauty of an old house, yet you can have all of the new fixtures and design features you want.

Consult a contractor from the beginning to find out exactly what your old house renovation will entail and shop around to find someone you can work with over an extended period of time. You also want to negotiate for the best price, although keep in mind that you often do get what you pay for in terms of quality service and materials.

Should You Renovate or Buy New?

When deciding whether to undertake an old house renovation, consider whether the original structure has serious structural damage or not. If it does and this needs fixing, you may be in for an expensive project. Some sellers may adjust the price accordingly, but you should factor in the cost of fixing severe problems.

Finally, consider whether you'll have to renovate to such an extent that little of the existing house remains when you're done, and if so, is it still worth it?


The Six Degrees of Renovation
Is That Old House Worth Renovating?

About the Author
Laura Horwitz has worked as a freelance writer and researcher for five years in both London and the US. She had a monthly landscaping and tips column for the Sussex County magazine RH Review, and her articles have also appeared in Film Focus, 6 Degrees Film, and BizBash magazine.

*Before you apply any of the advice described on the Hip-home.com website, you should consider if the advice is safe and suitable for your individual home situation and consult experts as necessary to evaluate the suitability for your circumstances.
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