Checking the Structure is Essential When Painting and Historic Home

June 19, 2016

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The WORKS team and I count as one of our pleasures the ability to work on historic homes throughout the North Shore of Boston. Recently, we painted the exterior of a Beverly, Massachusetts, home built in 1720. Before we began painting, we knew we had to check the home structurally. Fresh paint is not enough to hold together a 200-year-old home!

Our painting project began with power washing the house, decks, and foundation. The WORKS team scraped the Beverly house and found a lot of rot, mostly around window sills, corner boards, and nails in the siding. We also found rotted spindles on the deck and stair case.

Our first job was to clean out the rot, replace trim, boards, and spindles that couldn’t be salvaged, and epoxy to retain the rest if possible. We sanded and spot primed the epoxied areas. We applied caulking where needed.

After priming the entire Beverly house, we painted the exterior, including downspouts, elbows, hangers, and lattice.

That’s a lot of work and it took us just over 2 weeks from start to finish. Careful attention to rot and structural damage and professional exterior painting extend the life of any house; but we were especially proud to contribute to another 200 years of life for this historic Beverly home.

In previous blog posts, I’ve described some of our other projects painting and repairing historic homes on Boston’s North Shore. This not a project for college students or fly-by-night painters; you need someone who understands historic homes and the damage they can suffer from weather, insects, badly thought out past renovations, and simple aging.

Owners of historic homes like the one in Beverly know that painters might have to deal with problems ranging from lead paint to local restrictions on changing the exterior of the home. They need to deal with dry rot or help choose paint colors appropriate to the age of the home.

WORKS is familiar with the joys, problems, and restrictions of owning an historic home on Boston’s North Shore. We are ready to work with you on your exterior painting project to maximize the joys!

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