Would You Buy a 100 Year Old Home?

I get asked a lot if I like living in a hundred-year-old home.

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To be 100% truthful, I absolutely love it.

My home was built in 1915. We have lived here for 19 years and have completed three remodels. We built a new kitchen and expanded the family room area. We upgraded the electrical and air conditioning systems and redid five bathrooms. We also added a new porch and fireplace on the back of the house. We did have to replace the main fireplace as we discovered it had cracked in one of the earthquakes. It was costly but worth every penny. We have done a lot to the house but we are lucky in that most of it has been on the fun stuff!

There are a lot of advantages to buying an older home. Older homes have been around for a long time and have been through a lot. Many of them were built better. Our house has solid redwood doors and original wood windows. The original craftsman built it with amazing detail and the woodwork is divine. I personally feel like that’s harder to come by these days… and if you want to do it that way it costs a pretty penny! (But it’s always worth it!)

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Larger homes also tend to have larger lots and more character. The Victorian, craftsman, Tudor and colonial homes are all known for their character.

There is no that doubt mature trees and yards are a huge plus with older homes. We have two trees in our front yard that are at least 75 years old. They have survived through a lot! Weird to think they are older than us!

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Of course, there are also drawbacks to owning an older home. Maintenance is really important and you may have no idea if the house was properly maintained through the decades. We were lucky that plumbing, foundation, electrical and structural were in good shape when we bought our home. I think it helped that we bought the home from my in-laws (who bought it in 1969). The other issue is that people lived differently back in the early 1900’s. Most older homes have a lot of smaller rooms. Our home had a maid’s room and sleeping porch. We opened up the floor plan of the bottom floor and got rid of the maid’s room and added a large kitchen and family room. The change in the floor plan made a huge difference!

I don’t think there is anything wrong with new homes that were built to replicate the charm of older homes. I have seen some unbelievable new homes that have all of the character of an older home. I am sure the modern amenities are wonderful and often you can’t even tell that some of the newer homes were recently built!

It is fabulous that there are so many wonderful options to discover the charm and wonder of an older home.

What is it that you look for in a home? Charm and character? Modern amenities and complete personalization? I’m curious! So let me know below! 

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5 thoughts on “Would You Buy a 100 Year Old Home?

  1. Interesting question. I was looking for a contemporary with lots of wall space for paintings, but then I walked into the home we ended up purchasing. It was nothing like what I thought I wanted but it immediately felt like I belonged there. It is 60 years old and was built then to look old so there are old barn beams and other interesting features, hardwood doors with wrought iron hardware, and beautiful (but maintenance high) wide pine flooring. We have put a lot of effort into structural and practical improvements, insulation, solar, rebuilding 2 chimneys, sidewalks, landscaping….the list is endless! We love living here and hope to spend many more years here….oh , I also have a studio and a large mudroom (2 things on my original list).

    1. That sounds amazing! I love old barn beams and wish we could put them in our home somewhere! Do you have an Instagram account for this? If not, you should!!

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