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Is This Your Situation: Thinking About Buying a Historic Home?

Historic homes offer unparalleled character and one-of-a-kind charm, but they also come with special challenges. Here are four issues you’ll want to consider before you invest in history:

1. Know your restrictions.

You’ll need to follow certain rules to ensure your home’s original integrity and to protect the character of your home and neighborhood. The degree of restriction varies from home to home.

I can help you understand those restrictions. For example, if you want to put an addition on the home, I can help you find out if you’ll need special permits. 

Exterior features such as shutters, roofs and windows are often allowed to be repaired “in kind,” which means you must use the same, or similar materials. I can help you check with your community about any renovations you have in mind.

2. Choose your inspector carefully.

When you get your home inspected, I’ll help you find an inspector who specializes in historic homes. You’ll want to ensure that the home is safe structurally and meets current health standards and codes, including passing tests for harmful lead paint and asbestos.

Lead paint and asbestos can be removed, but you’ll want to be aware of these issues, especially if you have children.

3. Utility and repair costs for historic homes can run higher than those for newer homes.

If you want to write an offer on a home that needs repairs, we can get repair or replacement estimates from contractors so you know the cost of making those improvements.

Utility costs for historic homes differ from those of newer homes. Older homes often cost more to cool and heat because they were constructed with less energy-efficient materials We’ll get past utility bill averages, which can give you a sense of how much it will cost to cool and heat your home.

And if the home lacks heating or cooling, or needs updated plumbing or electrical work, I’ll help you factor in the cost of adding it in if you want to do so.

4. You may get financial help.

Many local and state governments offer tax credits, tax incentives or lower interest loans to historic homeowners. I can help you find out what financial perks will apply to your potential new home.

Contact me today to learn more about owning a historic home

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I write often to give you the latest insights on owning a home or property in the local area.

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