Refurbishing an old house is not that different from refurbishing an apartment. If anything, the most notable difference is the fact of taking special care with the prices of rehabilitating the façade, reforming the roof and the floors of the house.
Differences between reforming an apartment and an old house
When you are going to reform an apartment, you only have to worry about its interior, since the structural elements, such as the roof, the façade and the floors, will have to be taken care of by the community of neighbors. However, when you rehabilitate a house, you should review the status of all these elements and know how much the comprehensive reform will cost .
Tips for reforming an old house
Find an architect to carry out the reform project
You may think that hiring an architect for a reform is too expensive , but the truth is that it is very important to make sure that the structure of the house is in good condition. You can ask the owner if he has carried out any renovation less than ten years ago, if he has reinforced the structure or if he has a technical report . If not, it is best to contact an architect.
If you have not yet bought the house, it can be difficult to determine the exact condition of the structure, not so much to find an architect, but because it can be hidden under a false ceiling. Nor can you trust, if you are not an expert, how many cracks or fissures there may be. Older houses will have cracks and this does not mean that the house is about to fall.
Have an extra budget in case problems arise during the work
It is best to have an “emergency” budget in case, during the course of the works, something unforeseen arises . If you have a maximum budget.
If you have the right budget, propose the reform in phases: there are budget items for the reform of a house that can wait and that can be done easily once you are living in it: windows, façade, floor, bathrooms … The important thing It is to leave the essentials done, such as reinforcing the structure, the roof, changing the distribution and facilities.
Steps to follow to reform an old house
Hire an architect
Work on the project with him to determine if the distribution is going to be changed or if the covered ground floor will be used (a fantastic way to gain square meters to the house) and, above all, review the structure to make a first estimate of the budget reform and determine if it will have to be done in phases or not.
Request all the necessary building licenses for the reform
Although it is a procedure that the architect can carry out, if you are in the purchase process it is essential that you go through the town hall to find out if the house is affected by any change in urban planning. If this is the case, you will not be granted a major works license (essential if you are going to rehabilitate the house, touch the structure, expand it, etc.), so you could only condition the interior of the house.
Compare the budgets of different renovation companies
It is very useful for the architect to make the measurements of the work, so that you can give the same document to all the builders or reformers and that they all work on the same document and with the same qualities, of course.
Advantages of buying an old house to reform
So far it may seem like a mountain to embark on a house renovation, but it is worth it. Among other advantages, old houses:
They are usually in privileged enclaves
They are unique: stone facades, wooden structures, that special charm that is not found in modern buildings.
Unless you have to totally tear down the house, buying a house to renovate is usually a good investment.