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3 Costly Renovation Mistakes: A Historic Renovation Update

3 Costly Renovation Mistakes: A Historic Renovation Update
September 7, 2018 wayjamesmarketing

Every day after work my husband and I pour a glass of wine, and walk through our house.. sometimes twice.. sometimes 3 or more times,  just taking in all the changes and dreaming of where our couch is gonna go.

It has become ‘our thing’ since we began renovations on our 1922 home earlier this year.  It helps us stay on top of the progress or lack of it.

Renovating our historic home in the Elizabeth neighborhood has come with a few glitches.. but we are starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel.

In my last installment of Historic Home Renovation in March of this year, we had found some fun surprises (in case you are new here, I use the word fun as a coping mechanism).

The demo phase uncovered leaky lead pipes hovering right over the kitchen remodel area and asbestos lined ducting in the walls probably from the 50s.  We opted for all the costly and responsible home owner remedies.  We remediated asbestos removal.  We gutted all the bathrooms that had the old lead pipes.  By gut I mean down to the studs.  Oh yeah we also updated ALLLLL of the nob and tube wiring.  Technically if we weren’t going to update the 2nd floor, we weren’t obligated to touch that wiring, but guess what?  The lead pipes changed all of that.  Yes, terrifying. Yes, expensive, but you know what?  We just gave this nearly 100 year old home another 100 years of very usable and safe life.   Let me reiterate the “safe” part.  We have made the entire electrical system safe for us and future home owners.   

When you are renovating a home you don’t want to sacrifice safety. That would be a costly mistake.

Here are a few other costly mistakes to avoid on a home renovation.

  • Buying cheap materials. Everyone has to consider budget but there is a difference in quality of materials at every level. Get the best quality for a price you can afford. If you can’t invest in materials that will last for more than a few years then hold off till you can.
  • Avoiding Permits. If you aren’t properly permitted it could cause a problem later when you go to sell the house. Worse yet, if something serious happens your homeowner’s insurance may not cover it if the work/project wasn’t permitted.
  • Overbuilding for Your Neighborhood. Don’t invest more into the house than the neighborhood can support. There is wiggle room in this area but you don’t want to renovate your way out of the price point in the neighborhood.

So now we have hit the stage in our renovation where we get to take care of the pretty stuff!

Watching our home wake up and come to life is absolutely thrilling.  Just yesterday morning I choose tile pattern for our kitchen,  helped the cabinet maker choose a height appropriate for me for the shelf over the washer and dryer, and watched our old but updated windows go in our master bath. 

I really do love this stuff and can’t wait to show you more pretty pictures in the next installment. Oh yes we haven’t even started on the outside yet… stay tuned….