Older buildings are valued because they tell us about the past, making a lot of them protected by authorities as they have special historic or architectural appeal. When owning or living in a listed building or living in a conservation area, there are other things to consider. But we are here to help you learn more about owning a different, but exciting home.
Owners and conservation
Challenges do come with owning a historic home, regarding the structural decay and modernisations. It is particularly important that you look after your home, and the best way to make sure it stays in good condition is by keeping up with the maintenance. This involves doing a number of little things, such as clearing gutters, repairing windows and preventing leaks – all things to help keep the building weatherproof and watertight.
Four vital points for owners
Living in an older building means finding the balance of ensuring it meets your needs without compromising its historic character and features. Always ensure that you:
- Understand your building’s importance: this can be anything from the materials used to build and design it, or the people who lived their previously. By knowing the significant features of your building, you can use this as a guide if and when planning extra work.
- Carry out regular maintenance: just small amounts of maintenance regularly carried out will keep your home in good condition, especially when it comes to historic buildings.
- Respect its materials and craftmanship: when working on your building, use materials and techniques that sympathise with what is already there.
- Find out if any additional protection applies: if your building is listed or in a conservation area, additional permission might be needed before you carry out any work. Contact your local authority to see if you are in a conservation area.
Complex changes and repairs
Big changes or work to your home are likely to need specialist advice. A specialist can provide you with advice on what type of proposal would be best and which materials would be most appropriate to use.
You will also need specialist advice if you’re planning on making your home more energy efficient, due to the materials that are likely to be used in your home.
At NJ Architects we specialise in the conservation of historic and listed buildings, and we are always happy to advise and assist.