Throughout North Carolina and South Carolina, there are numerous historic homes. Remodeling an older residence comes with a number of very specific challenges. One issue, for example, is siding a historic home. This may be necessary at some point, but homeowners often put the project off because they don’t even know where to start.
This guide features a number of helpful tips that will make it easier for you to know how to properly renovate the exterior of your historic Carolina home. Here, we will focus specifically on the dos and don’ts of siding your residence. Remember, these are guidelines and your particular situation may dictate exactly how your project goes. Always talk to your siding contractor if you have questions related to your unique historic siding job.
Avoid using vinyl siding
Although many historic homeowners are tempted to use vinyl siding because it is extremely popular and easy to care for, it is not usually the best choice for old houses. This is because vinyl siding boards aren’t designed to let homes “breathe” the way many historic residences need to. Since vinyl siding wasn’t developed until mid-century homes were being built, it can sometimes do more harm than good on very old structures.
If, for example, you reside in an Antebellum Carolina home, you could find yourself dealing with a mold infestation or other water damage if you choose vinyl siding. Instead, consider wood siding or brick cladding for your house. If your property is on the National Historic Residence, there may be some restrictions on which materials you can use.
Maintain architectural detailing
As the saying goes, “They just don’t make them like they used to.” Frequently, the architectural details of historic North Carolina and South Carolina houses are their crowning glory. During your exterior remodel, make sure to maintain as much original architectural detailing as you can. This may include gingerbread scrollwork on Victorian Era homes or the ornate metalwork on Beaux Artes style houses.
Don’t make your home something it isn’t
Remember, historic houses are not new builds. While it is certainly possible to mix vintage and contemporary styles in an aesthetically appealing way, removing the character from your old house isn’t wise. Furthermore, going too modern with your renovation may actually make your Carolina home look odd. Stay true to its roots and you’ll be thrilled with the result!
Select a paintable siding material
Because modern siding products are generally designed to last for a minimum of two decades, it’s a good idea to choose a paintable material. There are multiple reasons for this. First, if you decide to change the color of your house before your new siding reaches the end of its lifespan, it is generally easier to paint the outside of a historic home than have it re-sided again.
Secondarily, if you opt to list your historic home in the relatively near future, the new owners may want to change the outside color. Many older houses have bold color schemes that are fun to change-up every once in awhile!
At Hatch Homes, we love all historic remodeling projects. Our team can guide you through the process of choosing the perfect siding for your vintage residence. No matter what material you ultimately decide to use for your project, we are here to ensure the job goes flawlessly!