And by that, we mean it’s worth investing in a proper house survey and CCTV drain report to avoid any pitfalls later on. Getting a specialist to look in to electrics and heating is also worthwhile, as Jacobs Steel Consultant, Matt West, discovered when he was renovating his period home in Worthing.
“We began taking things out and began to notice extra work that needed doing as we went, including some cabling that had been done wrong which meant we had to re-wire.” says Matt.
“If you’re aware of the current state of the house and what needs to be fixed and when, you’ll save a lot of money in the long run.”
As well as the usual Planning Permission and Permitted Development rules, you will need to look in to whether the building is in a Conservation Area or is listed, as there will be an extra dimension to Planning Permission if it is. Listed Building Consent, for example, must be sought on top of the usual Planning Permission.
Many buildings built around 1840 or earlier are likely to be listed; and it’s important to note that it may be a criminal offence to fail to apply for consent when it’s required, so be sure you do all the relevant checks.
Don’t assume the job will be straight forward. And a contingency plan means a contingency budget. Even through solid planning and budgeting it can prove difficult to have a clear idea on how much the full project is going to cost.
Luke Gladdish, Assistant Manager for Jacobs Steel West Worthing has been renovating a period property with his girlfiend and said,
“Even though we budgeted and prepared extra diligently, things still came up that we weren’t expecting.”
We asked Luke what advice he would give to anyone looking to renovate a character property.
“We were focussing on restoring the property and it’s features. It’s a huge personal investment in time and emotion as well as financially, so be sure to give yourself a break and a pat on the back every now and then.”
It’s important that you check that your home contents or buildings insurance can provide cover for extensive building work being carried out; and ensure that it does cover you before you start the work, otherwise it could end up being null and void. There is specialist renovation insurance available from most providers.
Also, be aware that a construction site is a dangerous place, so if you want to show friends around, make sure you check with the contractor in advance, so they can prepare the site accordingly.
Remember why you chose a period home in the first place. There will no doubt be an abundance of original fixtures and fittings of the era that you can restore, whilst modernising other elements of the property.
Jacobs Steel Sales Consultant, Matt West, had a pleasant surprise when he found some hidden original features in his home.
“When we moved in, we noticed that the bathroom had a dropped ceiling.” he said. “So, during our renovation, we removed it and discovered all of the old cornicing which is just beautiful and is now proudly on display.”
Matt advised that when choosing a contractor, it is important to choose one with extensive knowledge of period properties.
“ Old features don’t always respond very well to the constant vibration caused by renovation work, but the right contractor will know exactly how to look after your home during the work.”
We only recommend tradespeople that we have real experiences with.
54 Chapel Road
4 Wallace Parade
190 Portland Road
228 Findon Road
28 North Road
31 Brunswick Road
2 Broadwater Boulevard
Land & New Homes
54 Chapel Road
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