Renovating smoothly and easily

Renovating an old house, while maintaining the heritage, is not easy. You want the modern facilities yet you want to keep the old charm and beauty intact. Here are some tips on achieving the right balance between modern fitting and old rustic heritage.

Keep modern amenities to those such as installing elevators for homes that have more than one floor, adding a main waiter for old homes that have a huge open area. Elevators do not necessarily have to be installed within the house. You can opt for an elevator addition outside of the house while connecting to the interior. This keeps the walls and interiors intact. Grant Home Elevators  has a good range of residential elevators. Opt for an elevator that complements the look of the house.

Keep the walls as close to the original as possible. Most old homes are made of stone and brick. Keeping with this look maintains the charm of living in a heritage property. Houses built between 1895-1920 can be affected by rising damp, and those built from 1920-1985 can have asbestos.

Work on the drainage. Water that comes off the roof should be taken away from the base of the building. If you can correct the drain age issues, you have taken care of dampness in the walls, termites and fungi. Once the basic is out of the way you can work on redoing the walls and exteriors to what you like.

Only deteriorated mortar should be removed when plastering. By matching the mortar to the older mortar, you maintain the old look. Keep the original plaster. If you replace it with inferior drywall, it will alter the historic appearance and value of your home. Instead of taping over cracks, fill the cracks.

A place can look beautiful by a few finishing touches. Working on a porch or just detailing the steps that lead to the porch or the house can work wonders. Other simple additions that add to the old charm can be new cladding, a new roof, skylights, a paint job.

Making small structural changes like making a window bigger adds to the beauty and also gets in the much needed light to give the house an airy feel. Save the windows. Try to restore the front windows and add interior air panels seasonally. Adding weatherstripping to side windows. Save window replacement for those at the back of the house. More rooms can be created by taking a portion of a porch or a courtyard within the house.

Go ahead and renovate with ease to live in a house that has it’s own story to tell.

Renovating the garden


Some of us enjoy the outdoor as much as the indoor and creating a beautiful living space outdoors is no mean task.Garden renovation requires lots of creativity and lots of hard work. For interiors, it is easier to opt for the services of a home renovation expert. If you are looking at modern building techniques then Nexus Home Extensions is the perfect stop for addressing all renovation needs. When it comes to outdoor landscaping, landscaping for both small and big gardens requires creativity and planning. Understanding slope, sunny and shady patches, seasons, water needs etc. all form a part of the gardener’s arsenal.

Before setting out to plant seeds make sure you understand the local terrain really well. The kind of soil – how much water it absorbs, general climate as well as knowledge of the fertility of the area, becomes critical in making or breaking a garden. Not all plants bloom well everywhere, especially those that are growing on the ground. The soil has a lot to do with how the plants bloom. So for ground layouts opt for hardy plants that do not need too much care else gardening can become a mammoth task. For the hybrids and the more delicate variety opt to grow the plants in containers.

Containers add to the beauty of the landscape and allow a lot of flexibility in the placement of the plant. This can be important in areas where there are frequent changes in weather conditions. Containers also require less investment in terms of the fertilizer added. Little clay pots make great cloches for protecting young plants from sudden, overnight frosts and freezes. A little care from the kitchen goes a long way in maintaining the container plants. Feed the plants a little “vegetable soup” that can be used from leftover water in which vegetables have been boiled. The boiled water is loaded with nutrients and is an excellent fertilizer or the soil. Make sure the water has cooled down before applying it to the plants. Tea leaves leftover from boiling tea acidify the soil. Fantastic for those plants that love acid. These would be blueberries, rhododendrons, camellias, gardenias.

Got chamomile in the kitchen then just a bit of chamomile tea, sprinkled in the soil will keep fungus of seedlings. The little seedlings do well with citrus peels added to the soil. Grinding eggshells makes it easy for your garden to absorb the calcium egg shells provide.

So go ahead and work on the outdoor to create a healthy, blooming garden.