Tips for Remodeling Older Homes

Tips for Remodeling Older Homes

By John Gillette, Craftsmanship By John, Inc.

The attraction of buying and living in an older home that has features from a particular era is hard for some to resist.  If you have purchased an older home and love its character, you may have to make decisions on whether it should be restored or remodeled.  Older homes often come with challenges such as structural issues, water damage, plumbing and electrical issues. These issues should be addressed first before remodeling.  Discuss your budget and options with your remodeler to help decide whether to preserve and match the style of the home or rip out and update.

Original molding and flooring repaired and restored. Photo courtesy of Craftsmanship By John, Inc.

Custom designed and built cabinetry is the preferred option to be explored when renovating an older home. While it seems as though stock cabinets may be easier on the budget, having your cabinets created and built will give your home a more authentic look and offer a wider variety of door styles, finishes and size options. The cabinets will be measured, designed and crafted using the unique specifications of the room so they will fit perfectly.

If your home is of a particular architectural style, cabinets will be designed and built with same or similar wood. Cabinet molding can be fabricated to match other molding in the home.  If your home has unique molding that needs to be repaired or replaced, look for a remodeler that has the proper machines and tools to replicate.  This is a process that takes time, precision and expertise.

If you would like to keep your existing cabinetry, it can be updated with new doors, drawer faces and hardware. New soft close drawer slides can be added so the drawers open and close more smoothly.  New cabinetry can be designed and built to match existing cabinetry for additional storage and workspace.

Remodeled master bedroom.
Photo courtesy of Craftsmanship By John, Inc.

If you are planning to add an addition to an older home, your remodeler should focus on the goal of creating a harmonious transition from the old to new space. This rule will help maintain the overall character of the older structure. Your designer can replicate materials, finishes and other details from the original house into the new addition to maintain continuity. Make sure your remodeler and designer have experience in restoring and renovating older homes.

It is important to work with a contractor who understands your goal of preserving, restoring or adding to your older home.  Choose an experienced and creative remodeling team to ensure your project’s success.

This article was provided by a member of the Remodelers Council of the Greater Houston Builders Association. The Remodelers Council is dedicated to promoting professionalism and public awareness of the remodeling profession through education, certification and service to the Houston community.  To reach the author directly, email  For more information on this article, please contact Lorraine Hart at  To join the council or to find a professional remodeler in your area, please visit

GHBA_RCThe Remodelers Council of the Greater Houston Builders Association is an organization of remodelers and industry professionals. We are dedicated to the promotion of excellence and professionalism within the industry, and public awareness of the Remodelers Council. We achieve this through education, certification and service to the membership, industry and the community. Members of the Remodelers Council give back to the Houston community by participating in an annual charity project. The Remodelers Council holds an annual Garage Sale at the September Texas Home and Garden Show with proceeds going to their local charity project. To join the council or to find a professional remodeler in your area, please visit the GHBA website.

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