The pros and cons of owning a historic property, from those who've done it

The pros and cons of owning a historic property, from those who've done it

Investing in an historic property with various states of repair can be a rewarding endeavor if you’re willing to put in the time and resources. Historic properties, due to their age, can end up being costly to fix and renovate back to their original condition.

You may find different restoration projects and additions had been started at different points, with varying levels of expertise and vision in mind. You may also come across major repairs that need to be made and general continuous upkeep conditions that need to be adhered to on a regular basis. Whatever the issue is, understanding the pluses and minuses of owning an historic property and being willing to invest is a great first step.

Here’s a look at some major pros and cons that experts in historic property ownership have come across.


Experts say that historic properties are both gifts and curses, presenting their own unique issues from property to property. The upside is you have a truly unique property on your hands that you can take care of and help add to the culture of the community. Here are some other pros:

  • They add to the history: Besides being charming and unique, historic properties come with their own stories. Within the property, there are possibly hundreds of stories waiting to be told, making it a great place for history buffs to come and explore.
  • Contributing to Society: By purchasing an historic property, you’re helping to keep the history of a property, its neighborhood, and its greater community alive and running.
  • Indulging in Architecture: Historic properties each come with their own individual qualities, including architectural styles. Historic properties are usually constructed in styles like Colonial, Federal, Spanish, Victorian, and more, helping to stand out in the area around it. Those who have an affinity for both architectural design and history will thank you.
  • Financial Benefits: If you’re thinking about investing, there are potential tax incentives or lower interest loans that can accompany this move through state and local governments. What’s more, given that many historic districts require owners to keep properties looking a certain way, there’s a bigger chance that the property value won’t dip down.


Historic properties can be a blessing to those looking to keep the history and culture alive. But they can also come with lots of hard work and possible issues that go beyond just money. Here are some major cons to be aware of:

  • Lots of Work to Be Done: If you’re looking into buying an historic property, just know it’s not going to come in perfect condition. You would be wise to have a tool belt ready to go or have trusted contractors ready to take care of the renovations and repairs that need to be administered.
  • Strict District Rules: A major setback some people consider is the strict rules historic properties need to stick to. Local laws outline just what can and cannot be added, taken away, fixed, or updated in an historic property. Having to go through this kind of red tape just to update a staircase or patio, for example, is the reason why some people decide against investing in historic property ownership.