When renovating an old house, it's important to find the right contractor. While many contractors know how to fix newer houses, the field of old house contractors is more limited. Besides, this is your pride and joy and you want the right person sharing the journey with you.
Repair old plaster? Figure out old wiring? There are many nuances that come with fixing old houses. The key to finding the right contractor for an old house is to identify contractors who have worked with these types of issues.
Then talk about your house on the phone and listen for the contractor's reaction. Does the contractor seem interested in your style of house and all its quirks? Does the contractor ask questions and seem enthusiastic about the work?
Face to Face Meetings
When meeting with contractors, pay attention to how they approach your house. When getting out of the car, do they look around the outside, admiring the front porch or stained glass windows? Or, do they rush to the front door, looking down at a clipboard or notebook?
Once inside, do they look around and ask questions about its history and the work you've already done? Or, do they rush to sit down and focus first on the contract you have to sign? Also look for a contractor who:
• Stops to ask about the special fireplace mantel or built-in bookcases.
• Talks about similar projects and shows photographs of the work.
• Mentions specific home owners you can talk to about his work.
Renovating an old house requires lots of work and an equal amount of passion. You want a contractor who shares your vision and appreciates your attempts to bring an old house back to life.
About The Author
Allison E. Beatty is an avid old house enthusiast who has been renovating houses and writing about them for more than 10 years. She contributes regularly to national newspaper, magazines and web sites. She lives in an 1888 Victorian era home.
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