A home renovation can be an exciting and rewarding experience as building a custom home from scratch. It allows you to customize your home to your preference and needs, making it more valuable and enjoyable.
However, a home renovation usually comes with a lot of setbacks. There are high chances of facing unexpected hurdles while renovating an ancestral or old home. Here are four common challenges that arise when renovating a home.
Outdated plumbing and electrical systems
Old houses usually have outdated galvanized plumbing lines that corrode and clog over time. On the other hand, old electrical wiring, including knobs and tubes, might not be able to keep up with modern appliances. Building codes also change over time, and your home renovation project may unveil that the plumbing and electrical systems are so old that they no longer meet the requirements. While updating plumbing and electrical systems, especially during bathroom remodeling, might be costly, it’s vital in order to keep your home healthy and safe.
One of the main problems in old-construction homes is water damage. This can start with a leak in your roof, which may go unnoticed until water finds its way through the ceiling. Another common cause of water damage is faulty plumbing, such as a broken or leaky pipe.
The best way to prevent moisture damage is to find and fix all water leaks and ensure good ventilation throughout your home. Dehumidifiers can also help improve the situation, but it’s usually best to call a contractor to repair damaged areas and develop a plan to improve ventilation.
Cracks in the foundation
The presence of visible cracks in the building foundation is another major issue during a home renovation. Cracks are usually caused by the crumble of the cement used in old houses or grading issues which might have affected water runoff. The house’s weight and the settling of the earth underneath may also put pressure on the foundation, making the concrete buckle or crack.
Unfortunately, whatever the cause, it can be costly to repair foundation cracks and other issues. Get an experienced structural engineer to inspect your building and address the damage if you notice foundation cracks.
Old, hazardous materials may show up during your home renovation. These dangerous materials require special handling and disposal, and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has rules and regulations that your contractor must follow. Laws differ by jurisdiction, but in most cases, you may be required to call a licensed remediator to ensure that these issues are dealt with safely and effectively.
Lead is the most serious health hazard during an old home renovation. This chemical element is usually contained in the interior and exterior paint finishes or old plumbing systems. Another dangerous material is asbestos which is usually found behind walls or in the attic. While it’s safer to leave these unsafe materials where they are and contain them, it’s best to call an expert to remove them.
Renovating a home is one of the most satisfying projects. The new experience and joy you and your family get in the final result make everything worthwhile. While hiring a home improvement contractor is a great first step to starting a home renovation, being aware of these potential challenges will help you avoid many hassles during your project.
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