Old vs. New

8 Comments

Posted by Rebecca, June 23rd, 2011

I recently started reading a new-to-me blog, House*Tweaking. Yes, apparently I live under a rock for not finding it sooner, but it is wonderful. Want to see my favorite part so far?

(via Dana at House*Tweaking)

This picture made me all giddy. You see, Dana is selling her new house and is renovating an old house. I not so secretly wanted an old house that I can gut, a la Dana.

Don’t get me wrong, I love by brand spankin’ new house and bought it for a reason. But sometimes I am envious of the creativity that goes into the befores and afters I see all over blogland. I recently told Mike that if we had to buy another house? I don’t think I’d want a new one. Mostly because I want to wield a sledgehammer and partly because I felt like many of our choices were limited. There isn’t too much room for customization when you buy a new house, in a new neighborhood. Generally, you get to pick from tile group a, b, or c and floorplan 1, 2 or 3.

We missed the opportunity tile our bathroom seamlessly, like Ashley and Greg of 7th House on the Left did in when they renovated their ranch….

(via Ashley & Greg at 7th House on the Left)

Or gut a kitchen to our exact needs, likeΒ Katie Bower’s kitchen renovation in her previous home complete with peninsula…

(via Katie at Bower Power)

Ooor paint some paneling, like the so dramatically different it’s famous den of John and Sherry at Young House Love

(via John & Sherry at Young House Love)

And give an old fireplace life, like the fireplace makeover of Layla and Kevin of the Lettered Cottage

(via Layla & Kevin at the Lettered Cottage)

After being inspired by so many great makeovers, I find myself watching House Hunters or browsing Realtor.com and playing the “how would I renovate this house” game. Once, I was watching an episode of House Hunters that took place very near my house. The people walked into a house with wallpaper and green carpet and I’m sitting on the couch yelling “Don’t pass it up!! Tear up the carpet! Paint the trim!! It has great bones!” While we have torn up some carpet, added some trim and painted some walls, I know that I won’t get the dramatic befores and afters of those who tear up some 70’s shag carpet, or the satisfaction of tearing down a wall (though we have added one :)).

Even though I’m envious of those who can make unwanted homes into dream homes, I’ve also learned that a new home doesn’t have to be boring! There are also many wonderful bloggers with new homes that don’t look like your run of the mill model home.

Like Dana, once again from House*Tweaking’s current home…

(via Dana from House*Tweaking)

I had hopes of extending our island and adding a butcher block countertop quite like Dana did, but after we moved in we realized we didn’t have the space to do so. But, I am still inspired to take our house to the next level. I know it’s going to take some time (especially with our busy schedules), but I think even the simplest changes, like removing all of the builder brass and adding some more trim work will make a world of difference. I think I’m in a much more different place design-wise than I was just a year ago. Thank you, blogs and Pinterest for pushing my limits πŸ™‚

Maybe someday I can be a house flipper to get my extreme makeover fix in, but until then, anyone see any great makeovers lately? Do you prefer new homes, old homes or just a great makeover wherever it takes place? Please share πŸ™‚

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8 Responses to “Old vs. New”

  1. I love looking at these kinds of super-dramatic before-and-after pics, and I think it’s probably inevitable that the most stunning ones will involve older homes that are being renovated. But in terms of a preference in new homes vs. old homes, I think it’s kind of a mixed bag.

    We just closed on a house that was built in 1928, and there are a few things (especially the kitchen) that could use an update. I’m really looking forward to seeing what we can do with the place, but at the same time, there’s this feeling of, “wow, this is going to be a lot of work” and/or “wow, this is going to be expensive.”

    So in that sense, I think newer homes definitely have their advantages. πŸ™‚
    Sarah P.H. (Freestyle Home & Life) recently posted..Closing Day

    • Rebecca says:

      Great point, and that is one of the main reasons why we went new! At the time, our builder was running some great incentives that we would have never gotten with an old home. We were worried about unexpected costs, plus we never owned a home before, so we didn’t want to bite off more than we could chew in the budget department.

      But a 1928 house sounds so wonderful and charming! πŸ™‚

  2. I think I might be a little biased, having grown up in an older home, and then buying a house from that same era. There’s just something I love about older houses. I love our creaky 56 year old floor, I love wondering what our house was like before the living room and guest bed/bath were added, I love smashing gross 90’s tile in the guest bathroom, and I love wondering what we’ll find behind the ugly tile when we redo the fireplace. I even love my kooky yellow and black bathroom.

    I definitely see how new(er) houses have their pluses, though. Our kitchen will never be as big as I might want, or have as much storage space. But whenever I start feeling bummed about that, I remember how I love being able to stand in one place to simultaneously chop something, put something in the sink and stir a pan on the stove.
    Cait @ Hernando House recently posted..Summer Mantel

  3. I love the image of the tiled bathroom! I never thought I would be a fan but now I’m hoping to do that in our first house (whenever that happens).

    I agree that old houses are wonderful. To me, it always feels like they were built so uniquely. There’s nothing cookie-cutter to them. I grew up in a new house so I’ll always like them, too. You don’t have to worry about maintenance issues as much and you can just focus on turning it into a home. I don’t know what we’ll end up buying one day, but as long as the house has enough space to play with, I think we’ll be happy.
    Kristen @ Popcorn on the Stove recently posted..The Card Drop Off

  4. Debbie says:

    My parents had a house built for us when I was around 7. I was really nice knowing that everything was brand spanking new, but I have to agree with you. Although new house are so much shinier, they don’t have the character of the old houses. Plus, they just aren’t built the same.
    My husband and I just moved into a 1924 cottage/bungalow. We may have more work cut out for us, but it was just so cute we couldn’t pass it up!
    Debbie recently posted..The colors, dude, the colors!

  5. Ohmygosh! well consider me under the same rock b/c i’ve never heard of house tweaking til now! =) Totally going to go snoop and see what else they’re up to =) and I am realizing early in that builder grade anything bugs me to no end. oops? My builder and I have totally different tastes. I want to redo all the faucets and fixtures and I haven’t even moved in yet! whoops!
    jenn @ peas and crayons recently posted..a Confession

  6. Elisa says:

    Although a lot of the before and afters are stunning I love our three year old house. We actually weren’t the first owners so we didn’t get to pick out anything so we still feel there is a lot to do.

    We should be grateful we have tons of time to tweak and upgrade our lovely homes even further instead of tearing down walls and painting paneling.
    Not that I don’t LOVE reading those blogs and watching the transformations. πŸ™‚

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