Build a historic old house on your lot

By: Conrad Neuf , Contributing Writer
In: Historic Preservation

How many times have you wished that beautiful old house that could be purchased for a dollar was a little closer to your location? If you're a historic home enthusiast, you've probably read about quite a few. Of course, there's almost always that little catch about the house having to be moved to a new lot. And while a journey down the street or even across town might not be too bad, keeping the old structure intact during a move to a different state could be difficult and cost prohibitive.

But what if you could have a home that's already full of history built right on your property -- just as you would a new house? William Gould Architectural Preservation, LLC, a small Connecticut company dedicated to saving old structures, may be able to do just that.

Saving old houses one piece at a time

As someone whose love of old houses began at an early age, I take great pleasure in writing about preservation success stories. However, I also realize that for every historic home saved there are a multitude that end up in landfills. I recently posted about how despite valiant efforts by preservationists, a historic old house in Cincinnati was bulldozed and am currently hoping a beautiful home in Florida doesn't meet the same fate.

That's why my fascination grew the more I read about Mr. Gould's company -- when it comes to saving old homes and buildings, he definitely thinks "outside the box." What exactly does William Gould Architectural Preservation, LLC do? Pretty much whatever's required to save historic structures in the New England region.

According to Gould, he can move a house intact or disassemble it, protectively pack each piece, and send it across the country. Gould states that he has shipped old homes as far as from New England to Oregon. He can also manage the reassembly of the structure but prefers to limit those services to his immediate area. How much can be reused when each house is taken apart varies. But in at least one case, Gould was able to save stenciled plaster walls by encasing them in foam and removing entire sections.

Online old house shopping

William Gould Architectural Preservation, LLC's website features an array of historic old houses that are available -- some of which are still intact and others that have already been disassembled. The company also has a number of old New England barns that could be suitable for conversion to homes. I have no personal experience with the company so can't vouch for its performance. However, if you have the land but not the old house you've always dreamed of, Gould's company might be worth strong consideration. He is definitely a leader in New England historic preservation.