Erik Skogquist Highlights What You Need to Know When it Comes to Old Home Restorations
Erik Skogquist is a local history buff in Anoka with a passion for community and volunteerism. He is a member of the Anoka City Council and the Anoka County Historical Society. He studied political science and urban studies at the University of Minnesota before returning to Anoka to start a family with his wife, Amanda. Now, with two young boys, he enjoys renovating his family home in his spare time.
A number of years ago, Erik Skogquist and his wife invested in an old home from the 1880s and moved the structure from one lot down the street to another. Every year, he takes on new projects to make the house a wonderful single-family home with all the creature comforts his family needs combined with the old-world charm he so enjoys.
Renovating an old home can be a big project. That’s why it’s important to know these four things when it comes to old home restorations, according to Skogquist:
Understand What You’re Signing Up For
Old homes come with all kinds of charm and character. However, they also come with challenges. If you’re not the type of person who can tolerate a draft or a creaky floorboard in order to maintain the charm you fell in love with, reconsider whether restoring an old home is right for you. After all, buying a home is one of the biggest investments you will ever make.
Look Out for Water Damage
As structures age, their ability to stand up to the elements can wane. The most important thing to look out for is water damage, says Skogquist. Water damage can be a sign of bigger structural problems. The best places to look for water damage are around the ceilings, floors, and windows, which are all susceptible. Uneven floors can also be a sign that there is a problem with the sill plate, which supports the vertical components of the structure and sits in the foundation, close to the moisture of the ground. If you see signs of water damage, address it quickly and with professional assistance.
Use Quality Materials
While old home restorations are often big projects, don’t bite off more than you can chew. It’s important to use quality materials when working on a home restoration so that you don’t end up with problems down the road. Ideally, if you use the right materials, you won’t have to touch that part of the project for many years. A great strategy is to spread the cost of the restoration over many years, tackling different projects over time as Erik Skogquist does on his home in Anoka. That way, you can invest in the best products and feel confident that your home will continue to endure the test of time.
Keeping Restoration Authentic
If charm is what attracts you to an old home restoration project, Erik Skogquist recommends doing your homework before starting your renovations. Consider the decorative elements and their time period, as well as the bigger structural components like masonry. If you want to restore a house rather than just renovate it, use materials that match as closely to the original as you can find, but still offer some of the benefits of modern technology. Paying attention to details like the style of the period will preserve its original character, says Skogquist.
Restoring old homes can be a rewarding experience and give you the home of your dreams. For the DIYer like Erik Skogquist, they are great projects to keep you busy and invested in your home. If you’re considering restoring an older home, understand the challenges you may be signing up for in order to get that old character and charm. Watch out for water damage that can be a sign of bigger problems and only use quality materials and craftsmanship in projects. That way, you can be confident your restorations will