Fixing Up An Old House: 12 Problems You May Face
Aged houses or mansions have a unique charm and grandeur. Therefore, many people think of buying heritage homes to spend quality time with their family and loved ones. You may get a vintage home at an affordable price, but you must consider the costs of fixing up an old house. Therefore, it is best to ask a home surveyor to examine the structure before finalizing a home deal.
Here are some things to consider when fixing up an old house.
Fixing up an old house with a leaking roof
An old house’s roof might no longer be what it was in its younger days to prevent water leakage. While inspecting the structure, check the roof from the top or look for wet patches on the floor and ceiling to spot leakages. Roof leakage can be due to improperly installed shingles, loosely installed chimney flashing, deteriorated cement, or any other reason. If floors, walls, and ceilings have stains, they’re possibly due to a leaky roof. Also, check if sunlight penetrates through the roof. If yes, you will face severe leakage issues during rains.
In old structures, power sockets, switches, and other electricals can also be irreparable. Most times, old cranky electrical systems installed need immediate replacements. Ask an electrician to examine all electric points before fixing up an old house.
Unsurprisingly, pipework, taps, faucets, and other plumbing installations get inefficient with time. First, ensure that the entry point of the water is safe and clean. Then, if the pipework is of lead, you must replace it with copper or plastic pipes. Lead pipes usually blacken with time, but if you scratch the surface, they appear silver. And rusted pipework must also be replaced, whether made from lead, copper, or brass.
Broken windows are easy to spot. However, even windows that look fine from the inside and outside may not function correctly and be entry points for air. Connect with an expert to fix drafty windows while fixing up an old home. Maintaining windows’ architectural aesthetics while fixing up an old house is easy if you hire a professional.
Fixing up an old house with mold
Old houses can have mold growing on walls, ceilings, and corners. To prevent damage due to decay, get rid of mold quickly. It is best to consult a professional house repairer to get the work done.
Interior components like wooden ladders, floors, window frames, etc., may decay with time. White patches or graying wood signifies worn wood; dry rot appears on wooden surfaces due to fungus.
It is difficult to spot the dry rot; nevertheless, if the wood fixtures smell musty, it is probably because of dry rot. Simply cleaning the wood’s outer surface does not stop the decaying process.
If there are any signs of dry rot, you must consult an expert and have all wood exteriors and interiors surveyed.
Fixin up an old house with structural issues
Before fixing up an old house, examine the structural issues that might go unnoticed. For example, old foundations tend to sink with time, causing the floors to incline at one end. As a result, you will notice small cracks on the walls or ceilings. However, the problem could be more significant if the damages are in a zig-zag shape. Zig-zag cracks appear due to subsidence, i.e., the ground on which the foundation is laid is collapsing.
Misaligned windows, sloping floors, cracked walls, and small water puddles around the house are the most common indicators of subsidence. It is best to get your home insured in such cases. After that, contact an expert who can implement concrete underpinning and other measures to fix the subsidence.
Fixing up an old house with a broken chimney
Chimneys certainly add charm to an old house but are a cause for concern, especially if broken. Old chimney flashings might be rusted, causing problems like roof leakage. You must examine if the chimney has blockages to ensure its vents release smoke properly. If the chimney’s bricks are missing, they must be replaced immediately.
Aged chimney flashing can allow water to penetrate through roofs, causing water leakage. To repair the flashing, take the assistance of a professional roofer. It is better to replace the complete flashing instead of placing a new one over the old and rusted one. Generally, adding a coat of cement and leakage sealant solution to the chimney is a good idea to make it leakproof. Flashing made of high-quality galvanized steel can slow down the rusting process.
Kitchen counters in old structures may be in a dilapidated state. Prima facie, even if all seems fine, you must check whether the counter seams are correctly attached. Granite or wood sheets make counters generally look sturdy. However, any material used to fix wooden or granite sheets gradually deteriorates and eventually becomes inefficient in holding counters together. Therefore, if disregarded, it could lead to a severe accident if not checked and repaired immediately.
Fixing up an old house with broken tiles
Broken tiles or an entire tiled-walled bathroom in bad condition is a common concern. Therefore, consider having the bathroom renovated while fixing up an old house.
Antiquated structures also look older because of paint deterioration. Paintwork can be costly, but it will enhance the overall appearance. Use waterproof paint to leak-proof the walls. You may paint the interior walls, but it might be hard to reach all exterior corners. In such cases, it is best to get the work done by a professional painting company.
If you feel unusually cold in an old constructed house, it does not indicate the presence of a ghost! Dilapidated insulation in the attic, gaps in the floorboard and foundation, and small wall cavities can be common reasons for cold air drafts. While fixing up an old house, get these issues rectified by an expert.
Fixing up an old house with damaged sewer lines
If trees around a matured structure are old enough, their roots may have damaged the sewer lines. Repairing the main sewer line can cost you dearly, especially if it’s far from your house.
As mentioned above, the most common issue with an old structure is its leaky roof. The hidden auxiliary problems you can face while fixing an old house are also noted.
Regardless, it is better to find a company specializing in fixing up an old house to fix the issues mentioned above. You can search online “roofing companies near me”, “roofers near me”, or “roofing near me” to find professional roofers nearby.