Restored holiday homes

This text is part of an extended series of articles on Holiday homes - why and from what to build your holiday home and analyses the advantages and disadvantages of the construction systems commonly used in the construction of such buildings.

Unlike the other mini-series titles on Holiday Homes, this article looks at the possibility of restoring an already built house.

When you think about holiday homes the question naturally arises: why bother with building a new house when I might as well get a house that's already built? A very legitimate question, especially given that good places are already taken. In this way, buying an already existing home ends up being an increasingly good idea.

How do you know which house to buy

Each area of Romania has a local specificity when it comes to rural housing. If you liked the Village Museum, then this type of house is for you. There is the possibility of buying an old house and rebuilding it to adapt it to current needs. Of course, this may be more expensive than building a house from scratch, but the rental opportunity increases considerably.

In this regard, there are many types of houses you can rebuild, from very old wooden houses with a porch to more recent brick houses built in the 50s and 60s. Each comes with its advantages and disadvantages.

Plus, buying and restoring an old house has a greater impact at the level of the village community. To this end, we propose examples from Maramures where a number of old wooden houses from Maramures have been restored and brought up to modern standards of use. These actions are very important for the life and preservation of village traditions in the context of a massive demolition of old houses and the construction of new ones of considerable size that do not fit into the landscape.

In any case, not everyone can take on such a project. Restoring an old wooden house is a laborious and costly process and the decision to do so should be weighed very carefully beforehand.

Tips for choosing a suitable home
Ask the experts

While this is the first piece of advice for any purchase you want to make, in the case of old houses it is very important to get more opinions from knowledgeable people. This could save you from unforeseen extra expenses. Among the main specialists you should consult are your architect and structural engineer - they can tell you if it's a worthwhile investment.

2. Strength structure and finishes

This point ties in very well with the first - specialists are best placed to tell you whether the property is in good condition or not, and what work should be undertaken to restore it. Among the most serious problems with old houses, especially brick ones, is the lack of concrete pillars in the masonry. The house does not have a problem in itself, but any extension could involve pouring concrete slab, underpinning and other costly operations.

3. Access to utilities and home equipment

As a rule, old houses do not have bathrooms inside. Looking at the example of houses in Maramures, even the space for a bathroom is almost non-existent. And yet, with a little imagination, all the necessary spaces for a holiday home can be created. More recently built houses have bathrooms inside the house, but access to utilities may be non-existent. For example, in 2018 approximately 10% of rural households had access to sanitation.

4. Attention to accessibility

And for these houses, road access is important, both for materials and for the team of workers. The easiest way is to find the workers in the village. They won't need accommodation and you reduce costs.

5. Local craftsmen

Look for local craftsmen - who knows, you might even be lucky enough to meet the person who built the house in the first place. Surely they're the ones best able to help and give you advice.

Remodeling an old house can seem complicated and laborious, but the end result is extremely satisfying and the investment will pay for itself over time.

If you have any other ideas feel free to leave them in the comments.


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