Throughout my life, I’ve had the opportunity to examine literally thousands of homes all around northeast Texas. Large mansions, small cabins, pretty homes, ugly homes, new homes, and homes that pre-date the civil war. I’ve seen just about every type of home there is to see (except a house with a real basement, still haven’t seen that yet).
Fairly often, I hear how people will specifically say they want an old house. Most will mention descriptors such as “charming”, “character”, or, “reminds me of grandma’s house”. Some will even go as far as to say they just don’t trust the houses built after 1980, or 1990. Regardless of what year it is, those who share this sentiment may not understand what living in an old house could really mean for them.
Let’s look at some reasons for why you might want an older house. There are several features and characteristics in certain older homes that just can’t be replicated today without great financial advantage.
Features such as:
- an abundance of hand-carved stained wood trims
- high ceilings
- stained or leaded glass
- ornate fixtures and finishes, etc.
All things that attract people to older homes, of which there are several here in Sulphur Springs and throughout northeast Texas.
BUT, just how old of a house should you be looking for? Well if you like the charm and appeal of these types of homes, then you need to look at homes mainly built before WWII.
Of the thousands of homes I’ve seen, I have noticed the old house charm goes away almost instantly during this time
period since most all of the materials went towards the war effort. Post-WWII, the quality returned somewhat but those houses are still around 70 years old and have dated wiring, plumbing, and insulation. They can still be wonderful houses, but don’t fool yourself into thinking a 50–60-year-old house will be “low maintenance”. Which brings me to…
If you live in a 70-year-old house and haven’t had to do any work to it, consider having it thoroughly inspected for safety and longevity purposes.
How long will potential problems stay at bay and what can be fixed proactively? Keep in mind, homes are simply built different than before and in many ways, this is a good thing!
Can you imagine building a new house without air conditioning, modern insulation or all the other creature comforts we’ve become accustomed to?
There’s definitely something to be said about buying a newer house that has modern amenities and energy efficient items without the need of constant repairs.
Sulphur Springs has long enjoyed the work of many quality home builders who take their time to create houses that last a lifetime. If you are in the market for a home, I’d suggest a newer build. Or at least a house that’s relatively new. The overall cost may be more upfront, but in the long run will save you tens of thousands in remodels and updates. Homeownership can be stressful enough as is, so it could be worth saving yourself from the constant worry of something else breaking down in your house.
But, if you’re a sucker for history and that irreplaceable charm, then an old house might be the right fit for you. As long as you take your time and fully understand what you’re getting into, owning and caring for an old house can be a very rewarding experience.
About the Contributor: Jed Walker works full-time in a family-owned business of Real Estate Appraisers. After getting a Bachelor’s degree from Sam Houston State University, Jed left a successful sales career in Dallas to return to the business his knows best—real estate. Combining both the mindset of an appraiser and a real estate agent allows him to bring his unique perspective and approach to the home buying process. He understands that buying a home is not just a financial investment but an emotional one. Add to that, his patience and “quick on the draw” updates are just a small part of what sets him apart from those just looking for a commission check. Jed also knows how best to market your home, land, or commercial property in the most efficient manner, both in price and time.