Australian Property Updates

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How to Renovate an Old House

Sometimes the best way to own your dream home is to buy an old property and renovate the eaves out of it. Not only will it save money on buying an expensive and newly-built home, it will also be highly valued by prospective buyers in the case of a resale. You will also be freer to incorporate your design tastes and personal preferences into the remodeling. Besides, there’s something very romantic about buying a home decades, or even centuries, old and making it your own.

The prospect of renovating an old home is tempting, exciting but also very stressful. The entire project could be botched up by a few missteps. It’s paramount that all future renovators do their research in advance. To get started, check out the following tips:

Redo the roof

The roof is one of the weakest structures in an old house. The weather and neglect over the years certainly take a rough toll on any decades-old roof. Therefore it’s important to pay attention to the roof when renovating a new home. Fixing up a few holes here or there is not enough. The roof should be fully inspected for wear and tear as well as possible insect colonies or mould growth. Many old houses use asbestos, which needs to be removed completely. Make sure to Google “asbestos removal course Darwin” before choosing a contractor.

Reinstall the plumbing

The old plumbing systems are inefficient and inadequate to meet needs of modern homes, so replacing the plumbing system should be high on your renovation checklist.  Carefully choose the pipes and needed equipment based on safety, not money or looks.

Don’t ignore the windows

Many houses designed in vintage styles have large windows. They may be nice to look at in the summer, but in winter, they will only increase your heating bills. Talk with your contractor regarding making windows smaller or replacing the glass to suit the winter months. The need for insulation should be balanced with the need for light.   All the new rooms should be able to receive plenty of sunlight. No one likes dingy living rooms or studies. It may not be necessary to add extra windows to let in the light, just redesigning the existing ones will do.

Uncover the floorboards

The floors of old houses are often covered with carpets and linoleum. Remove flooring like this and uncover the floorboards beneath. This is the floor you should work with. Have it inspected for holes and other problems. If there are holes, consider filling it up with actual woodcuts, instead of wood putty. It will create a unique look. Choose new flooring that match the original, as long as the original material is sturdy enough for the new family. For example, vintage Baltic pine floorboards look exquisite, but they are also very soft and prone to cracking. In a case like this, it’s just smarter to choose tougher hardwood floors from the get go.


Last but not least, choose a good contractor who uses the latest tools to do the renovating. Generally, the actual rebuilding part should not take more than six months, but might take more than a year for severe cases. You will have to be extremely patient during the process. Stick to the plan and don’t make drastic changes midway through the project. Be patient, and it will certainly pay off later.