Restoring Vs. Rehabilitating Historical Buildings

When you are working in the restoration field there are a lot of challenges that contractors face off with. Between meeting a clients needs and the line of discovery to identifying what a client truly wants, there can be a lot of legwork.

As a contractor identifying what the client truly wants is going to be that skeleton key that leads to their satisfaction. With that in mind, as a contractor, or as a client, the following should be taken into consideration if you intend to do work on a historical building.

Restore Vs. Rehab

Understanding the difference between the two is vital and they can be very easy to confuse. By definition this is what each of these mean

  • Restore- This means to take a home and bring it to an internal and external appearance of a specific time period. This can be incredibly challenging for a number of reasons, but for the sake of an easy example: plumbing.
  • Rehabilitate- In plain English, what this means is to bring a home to a standard where it offers a functional, comfortable living for modern standards. It can have some themes from a specific time period, but opens the door to more modern technology such as kitchen/bathroom upgrades.

Consider Current Conditions

There are several factors that contribute toward whether restoring or rehabilitating is going to be the better option, but as a general guide both the client and contractor should consider:

  • The current exterior conditions of a home
  • The current interior conditions of a home

And overall, the amount of work it would take to restore particular areas of the home and vice-versa. In some cases if a home is kept in good enough condition restoring can be the cost-effective option on top of being the client preference.

In other cases, however, there might have to be a lot of work done to integrate a restoration that could lead to extremely high expense. Take this into heavy consideration when making a choice on restoring vs. rehabbing.

Research Extensively

If the client/contractor is hoping to restore the home make sure the proper homework is done to make sure it can be done correctly. This could be a number of different considerations, but should definitely include:

  • Measurements and any kind of adjustments that need to be made being incorporated into measurements.
  • Materials that will be required
  • Tools that will be required for the job

Taking into consideration the room that a contractor has to work with, the kind of material that will be needed, and the tools to perform these tasks all need to be properly quoted before making a decision.

Trust the Contractor

Contractors are paid to research this extensively and work in this field of business on a day-to-day routine. This keeps them in the loop and fully aware of what your best options are as a client.

What this means is that while you may have a great image of what you want a property to be, a contractor has the hands-on experience to inform you what your best options truly are. Make the most of the building you want to bring to life and place your trust in a qualified contractor like Heather & Little who has a plethora of experience restoring historical buildings.

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