Purchasing a historic home can be an exciting experience. The quality of detail and craftsmanship is unlike any new home on the market. Where else can you find a staircase crafted by hand, or wide plank floors aged to the perfect patina? These homes often showcase high ceilings and beautiful, intricate moldings. In the historic district of downtown Charleston, SC you can literally walk for hours past streets of elegant, majestic historic homes, some dating back to the days of the Revolutionary War and early, colonial Charles Towne.
The details in a historic home are wonderful. Sure, the floors squeak, the corners do not match up and cost to maintain can be considerably higher. But where else do you find pocket doors, stained glass, hand-blown glass windows and beautiful carved fireplace mantles? Many of these elements reveal the home’s rich history, or offer a peek at what life might have been like for its owners over the years
Owning a historic home is not for everyone. You often are required to have historic board approval for work and/or changes to the property. In many cases some things due to historic value cannot be changed. In Charleston, the historic district is strictly enforced by the Board of Architectural Review (BAR). In order to preserve the historic qualities of a home you may need to hire skilled craftsmen, locate original or reproduction fixtures, or meet the challenges of bringing antiquated systems to modern code for safety. And if the floors lean a bit? Well, they can make a pretty strong case to leave them just the way they are. Much of these details may be what you loved about the house, but they are challenges nonetheless.
Home prices in designated historic districts across the nation are generally higher than those for non-historic districts. The historic home market is more stable. If you are willing to put money into a historic property the government is willing to help you on the tax side. Tax incentives are available at the local, state and federal level. Check with your accountant for details.
If you purchase a historic home you become a historian even if you were not a history buff before. It is like living within the pages of a history book. Each property is unique and one-of-a-kind. No “cookie cutter” neighborhoods or houses just like the house next door. You have a sense of pride that you own a part of U.S. history. Let us help you find a historic home here in Charleston.
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