As other property buyers snatch up new builds, you have your eyes on older structures replete with character and charm. And there’s perhaps no better representation of that type of building than an old barn. So today we are bringing you 6 Things to Know Before Renovating and Old Barn… sure hope they lend you a helping hand!
America’s farming history began with the country’s first settlers — the oldest barn buildings in your area aren’t older than the town or city itself. Buying one means you’ll have a piece of that vibrant, pioneering spirit. It also means you have to know some basics before diving into renovation and, ultimately, life on what was once a farm.
Here are six things to know:
1. Ask the Experts First
You’re not the first person to dream of renovating a barn. In fact, your state or city likely has its own historical society, which specializes in the restoration of such important, age-old buildings. So, reach out to those experts first for tips on how to carefully reconstruct and renovate your old barn.
Try reaching out to the Barn Alliance if you can’t find a local organization with the same focus as yours. This organization fights for the preservation of historic barns like the one you intend to buy. As such, they have a roster of skilled architects and contractors who can help you come up with the right restoration plan.
2. Learn About Your Barn
All barns are not created equal. Instead, you’ll find that different parts of the country have barns of different ages and styles. For example, if your barn is on the east coast, it’s possibly a relic of the 17th century. A west coast barn, on the other hand, could have been built in the 19th century onward.
Knowing the age of your barn will help you restore it properly. Even if all pieces aren’t intact now, you can research the style of farm buildings during that time and choose the right features to authenticate your update. Perhaps it had a gabled roof instead of the gambrel roof more common for newer builds, for example.
All the information you need to know the Age of our Barn is right here
3. Stick to Your Timeline
During some home renovations, people find themselves behind schedule or short on cash. They find a nice stopping point and put off the rest of their projects for when their money and time replenish.
In restoring your barn, though, you can’t leave some maintenance projects for later. Instead, many barn owners find that in doing so, they open themselves up to even more expensive renovations down the line as their structures suffer from more damage. Something as simple as a shingle missing from the roof can have detrimental effects. Make sure you have the time, money and patience to stick to your timeline. You and your barn will end up better for it.
4. Envision Its New Purpose
You usually won’t buy a barn to use it to house your livestock or hay supply. Instead, you’ll use it as a living space. If you take all of the steps to make it a comfortable living space, an antiquated structure will make for a charming home. For example, you’ll have to spend time and money to insulate your barn properly, so you and your family are cozy year-round.
Of course, you’ll want to rework the set-up of your barn before beginning construction. Again, an architect or contractor can help you bring together the old structure and modern conveniences, so they blend together.
5. Don’t Rule out the New
To that end, you shouldn’t completely exclude new materials from your barn renovation. There’s a reason why humankind has advanced so much in recent years — technological advances have made many things safer, cheaper and more secure than ever.
The same applies to construction materials and methods. You’ll want to bring modern conveniences into your barn such as running water and electricity. On top of that, you might want to consider replacing rotten or broken materials with their newer counterparts. Although you could scour the country for period pieces, you could save time and money by simply swapping them for new materials installed in an old-fashioned way.
6. Seek out Additional Funding
Depending on the age and importance of your barn, you might be able to apply for state- or federal-level funding. For example, the National Register of Historic Places connects owners with Technical Preservation Services, which provides tax cuts to property owners. Some states, including New York, offer additional tax credits for restoring historic buildings.
On top of that, you might be able to find grants that provide additional funds for your project. However, this is often a long shot, as they’re typically chosen through a lottery, so don’t rely on gifted funds to complete the renovation.
Make Your Barn Its Best
These six tips give you an idea of what you might need to consider, prepare for and compromise on as you embark on a barn restoration project. No matter what happens, one thing is for sure — the process will feel rewarding, and it will leave you with a property you’re proud of.
Renovated Barn Examples
Here is an example of what a Renovated Barn can become. It might look very familiar since it was on an episode of Fixer Upper. Here is the beautiful outside finished creation…
Joanna and Chip transformed the Hallway into a huge Family Dining Space…
The Kitchen is a pure Dream!
For more information on this Fixer Upper Barn Renovation… visit HGTV!
For more examples of some outstanding Barn Renovations, visit Bank Barn Archives… here is a sneak peek…
A little peek on the inside…
Hope all of this information and sources helps you reach your Barn Renovation Dream!
A BIG Thank you to…
Kacey Bradley is the lifestyle and travel blogger for The Drifter Collective, an eclectic lifestyle blog that expresses various forms of style through the influence of culture and the world around us. Kacey graduated with a degree in Communications while working for a lifestyle magazine. She has been able to fully embrace herself with the knowledge of nature, the power of exploring other locations and cultures, all while portraying her love for the world around her through her visually pleasing, culturally embracing and inspiring posts. Along with writing for her blog, she has written for sites like U.S. News, SUCCESS, Tripping.com and more!
Follow Kacey on Twitter and subscribe to her blog to keep up with her travels and inspiring posts!
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Carl Green says
I liked how you mentioned that you should know the age of a barn before renovating it. My wife and I have always wanted to live in a barn and we were wondering how we could fix one up for cheap. I’ll be sure to tell her that we should know the age of a potential barn before we renovate anything.
So glad we could be a little bit of help in your potential venture… wishing you all the best! Take care and enjoy!