Don’t ruin your historic home

There are many do’s and don’ts when it comes to restoration and conservation projects, but here are some activities you should avoid at all costs when renovating your period home:

Avoid hiring contractors who are not specialists in period work

Historic buildings are beloved because of their visual appeal and the history they reveal. Old buildings are not as durable as modern constructions and require specialists who know the materials and methods used to build them. Even small changes, or the use of the wrong materials, can cause a lot of damage.

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Painting natural surfaces

Modern paints are mostly non-porous and trap moisture in the walls. Evaporation occurs in older buildings where there are cracks. This causes crystallisation and decay. The moisture is trapped in the walls, which can also cause damp patches to appear inside your home. Materials used to build older buildings, such as cob, earth and daub, will rot if exposed to excessive moisture.

Cleaning materials

If you are not an expert on stone masonry, it is best to avoid cleaning the original surfaces. Both air abrasive cleaning methods and chemical cleaners can damage stone and brick. Some chemicals can react with brick and stone, leaving a harmful residue on the surface. Even water alone can cause staining or decay. Consult a professional if you feel that your property could benefit from unsightly stains or marks being removed.

Replace unnecessary parts

Avoid replacing any feature if it is not necessary. When dry rot is first noticed, many people remove the timber frames. However, this can be stopped by increasing ventilation. The appearance of an older property is completely altered when upvc replacement windows are installed. It is the same for other features of a period property, such as original doorways. Original doors should be restored gently and not replaced with brightly synthetic modern alternatives.

Choose fixtures sensitively

When adding new fixtures and fittings, try to blend with the history and charm of the period of the property. For example, shutters will look great in an old farmhouse or country cottage property. For Shutters Cheltenham, go to

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Mix and match

Mixing and matching styles can also ruin the look of an old property. Kitsch features such as carriage lamps, shutters mounted on the wall, and front door panels that are press-moulded look cheap and fake. Reproduction decor and fixtures which were not part of the original history of the home will look jarring and out of place.

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