Remodeling Home With Function & Aesthetics in Mind
living room with lit fireplace

How To Remodel a Historic Home With Function & Style in Mind

Greek revival house.

Remodeling a historic home can be an exciting and rewarding endeavor, allowing you to breathe new life into a piece of history while creating a functional and comfortable living space. However, it’s essential to strike a balance between preserving the home’s unique charms and incorporating modern amenities. In this blog post, our design-build experts at Wentworth will provide you with valuable tips and step-by-step guidance to ensure a successful remodel that honors the past while embracing the present.

Research & Understand the Home’s History

Before embarking on a remodeling project, take the time to research and understand the history of your home. Learn about its architectural style, original features, and any historic significance it may hold. This knowledge will guide your decision-making throughout the remodeling process and help you identify elements worth preserving.

Consult With Preservation Experts

If your home is truly classified as historic and not just old, then engaging preservation experts, such as architects or historic preservation consultants, can provide invaluable insights and guidance. These professionals have experience working with historic homes and can offer advice on how to maintain the home’s integrity while incorporating modern comforts.

Identify Key Architectural Features

Identify the key architectural features that contribute to the home’s historic charm. These might include original windows, doors, moldings, or other unique elements. Whenever possible, preserve and restore these features to maintain the home’s authenticity.

Modernize Systems & Infrastructure

Remodeled historic kitchen

While preserving the historic charm, it’s essential to modernize the home’s systems and infrastructure. Replace outdated electrical, plumbing, and HVAC systems to ensure safety and energy efficiency. However, work closely with experts to find solutions that don’t compromise the home’s character.

Enhance Natural Lighting

Maximize natural lighting by restoring or replacing windows. Authentic wooden windows can often be repaired, while energy-efficient replicas can replace beyond-repair units. Consider adding skylights or light wells to introduce additional natural light into interior spaces.

Adapt Floor Plans for Modern Living

Historic homes often have compartmentalized floor plans that may not suit modern lifestyles. Adapt the layout to create open-concept spaces while respecting the original structure. Removing non-original partitions and reconfiguring rooms can promote functionality and improve flow.

Schedule a consultation with our Chevy Chase, MD remodelers!

Select Materials With Historic Sensibility

When choosing materials, opt for those that reflect the home’s era or are sympathetic to its historic character. Use reclaimed or salvaged materials whenever possible, such as antique wood flooring or vintage fixtures. Consult preservation experts or historical societies for guidance on appropriate materials for your home.

Blend Old & New Aesthetics

Strive for a harmonious blend of old and new aesthetics. Consider using modern furnishings and decor in conjunction with original architectural features to create a balanced and inviting space. This fusion will allow the historic elements to shine while ensuring comfort and practicality.

Preserve Exterior Charm

Exterior of a DC area two story home

The exterior of a historic home contributes significantly to its overall appeal. Preserve the facade’s historic charm by using appropriate paint colors and materials. Repair or replicate any damaged or missing architectural details, such as trim or decorative elements.

Maintain Historic Landscaping

Don’t forget about the surrounding landscape! Preserve and enhance the historic charm of the home by maintaining or recreating period-appropriate landscaping. Consult historical references or work with landscape architects who specialize in preserving historic gardens.

Why Choose Us?

Remodeling a historic home requires a delicate balance between preserving its unique charms and incorporating modern comfort. Wentworth stands out from other remodeling companies with its dedicated in-house design team led by experienced architects. Our expertise lies in offering comprehensive and budget-friendly design-build services.

If you’re looking for a team that can provide comprehensive design-build services, look no further than Wentworth. Call (240) 383-1226 and begin your historic home journey.

“ We like your bold vision for our home. ”

Christine R., Washington, DC