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5 Tips to Make Your Historic Interior More Comfortable

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These five tips will help your historic house feel more like a home without sacrificing its historic character.

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5 Tips to Make Your Historic Interior More Comfortable

  1. 1. 5 Tips to MAKE YOUR HISTORIC INTERIOR MORE COMFORTABLE
  2. 2. 1. Mitigate drafts appropriately. Identify where your house may be losing energy (dampers, attics, windows). Use historically compatible materials like caulking and weather stripping. Window removal should be the last resort!
  3. 3. 2. HVAC and historic houses can coexist. Installing some climate controlled systems in a historic structure risks damaging decorative finishes and materials, and can lead to the loss of character-defining features. Look for small-duct options that can fit above ceilings.
  4. 4. 3. Learn the secrets of plaster walls. The interior of plaster walls is composed of lath upon which up to three coats of plaster are applied to. The lath, which is nailed to supports like studs, allows the plaster to ooze between each strip and cling, forming keys. You can hang frames and other objects on plaster walls if you take precautions.
  5. 5. 4. Uneven floors might signal a bigger issue. Uneven floors in a historic house can range from inconsequential (a natural result of age) to worrisome (structural components were removed or are damaged). It’s important to determine how serious it is in your historic property so you can know what, if anything, needs to be done.
  6. 6. 5. Know your options for electrical wiring. You can rewire your historic house or update what’s already in place, but you need to know the existing infrastructure—a pro familiar with historic structures will know how to minimize alterations to the physical fabric of your house.
  7. 7. The National Trust for Historic Preservation works to save America’s historic places. Preservation Tips & Tools helps others do the same in their own communities. For more information, visit SavingPlaces.org. Dominic Alves/Flickr/CC BY-2.0; Adrian Berg/Flickr/CC BY-2.0; Stephen M. Scott/Flickr/CC BY-NC-ND-2.0; Megan Petty/Flickr/CC BY-ND-2.0; peppergrass/Flickr/CC BY-NC-ND-2.0; Frank Fujimoto/Flickr/CC BY-NC- ND-2.0.

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