7 Beautiful and Unique Features in Old Houses Worth Preserving

Do you live in an old home? According to the American Community Survey, the average age of owner-occupied homes is 37 years. Before replacing those doors, windows, and vintage floors in your home, you may want to think twice. While some might see these old houses and focus on the flaws, history, and unique features are worth preserving. Many of your home’s historic features can add value and beauty to your space. When renovating your home, it’s important to highlight these aspects rather than hide them.

This article has seven vintage features that you might have in your own home that you should consider keeping.

  1. Wood Floors

As one of the most unique characteristics of many old homes, vintage wood floors are one of a kind. If your home has hardwood floors in its living room, bedrooms, or hallways, you may consider refinishing them to preserve their beauty.

Hardwood refinishing can produce a stunning finish that protects its unique look. If you have rough edges, scratched panels, or discoloration, refinishing your floors can fix many of these issues. It’s important to choose a finish that can withstand heavy use and works with your specific type of wood.

Depending on your type of wood, you may choose an oil foundation or a water foundation for finishes. These either sit on the wood’s surface or seep into the wood. To help you choose the correct finish, be sure to consult a professional woodworker.

  1. Laundry Chutes

Another common characteristic of both expensive and cheap old houses are laundry chutes. These are often found in bathrooms and washrooms in homes with multiple levels. Laundry chutes add convenience and charm to a vintage home that many newer homes don’t see today.

While there is concern over these features being a fire hazard or safety hazard for small children, there are no laws prohibiting them in homes. To keep laundry chutes in your home, it’s important that they follow design guidelines to ensure safety and functionality.

Make sure that your laundry chute doesn’t empty out near a water heater or furnace. Adding secure elevated doors to your laundry chute can also keep your children and animals from using them.

  1. Shutters

Shutters were once a popular aspect of homes that have gone and come back into style several times. Today, old homes with shutters have a vintage, classic look. Some shutters are also some of the most energy-efficient window options.

Operable shutters allow you to add or take away warmth and sunlight from your home. In the warmer months, you may enjoy opening shutters for natural sunlight and heat. If it gets too hot, you can also close the shutters to reduce the temperature.

In colder months, shutters can also help keep warmth from your heater inside. Operable shutters are a zero-energy solution to gaining more control over your home’s temperature. While many homes may have faux shutters that don’t operate, operable shutters add unmatched value and convenience.

  1. Intercoms

Reminiscent of the 1970s era, intercoms are convenient and unique features found in old houses. These allow you to communicate with family members and guests from any room in your home. Intercoms also allow for added security and safety.

Intercoms usually have one main station and several smaller speakers throughout the home. With today’s innovative technology, it’s never been easier to preserve these features in your vintage home. Whether you have a larger or smaller home, consider preserving your intercoms to add value, safety, and convenience to your space.

  1. Dutch Doors

As a popular feature in the Dutch Golden Age, Dutch doors are a private, protective way to add personality to space. In 17th century Netherlands, these doors kept out debris, rodents, and dirt in the cities. They also enabled residents to interact with neighbors or visitors without leaving their homes.

If your old home has a dutch door, this may be one of the gems in your space.

These doors have a split functionality divided into two parts. This allows for the capability to open the top half while keeping the bottom shut. This can be beneficial on a cool day, allowing for the breeze to come in while still keep the door closed and secure.

If you have small children or pets, this is can keep them safe inside while enjoying the view and weather. When renovating your old home, be sure to prioritize the connection hardware on your Dutch doors. This can ensure that your doors are unique, beautiful, and also functional.

  1. Pocket Doors

Another favorite feature of old house life is pocket doors. These allow for an open floor plan when needed, and added privacy when not needed.

These doors work to close off certain rooms for a cozier feel. They also work to open up the floor when entertaining or needing more space. Pocket doors create an elegant, classic feel with unique functionality. To renovate your pocket doors, consider adding a fresh coat of paint, new hardware, and fresh trim.

  1. Bungalows

At the turn of the century and in the midst of the Victorian Era, bungalows became a top design style for many American homes. These small fixtures with sloping features are often full of windows and surrounded by pillars.

This allows for an artistic, vintage look that is unlike any modern style. Many bungalows can also serve as quaint cottages for single-family living. If you have a bungalow on your old or historic property, consider preserving it to be one of the most unique looking spaces around.

Bungalows also often allow for add-ons and personable, quirky touches. Consider renovating the windows, trim, doors, steps, or pillars for an upscale look that pays homage to the past.

Renovate for the Love of Old Houses Today

If your home has touches of the past, preserving these unique features is a great way to keep its history alive. Old houses with renovated features are valuable, beautiful, and one-of-a-kind. To preserve your old home today, be sure to connect with a professional woodworker, builder, or renovator.

For more helpful information and tips on all things home improvement, be sure to check out the rest of our website.