Period Home Restoration - Preserving Charm While Modernising

16 Nov 2023

Period Home Restoration – Preserving Charm While Modernising

Period Home Restoration – Preserving Charm While Modernising


Restoring a period home is a delicate balance between preserving its historical charm and integrating modern conveniences. This guide provides insights into how to approach a period home renovation, ensuring that you maintain its unique character while updating it for contemporary living.

Understanding the Historical Significance

Edinburgh is a City steeped in history and know for its abundance of beautiful period properties which Beckett & Beckett have had years of experience renovating. Before beginning any restoration work, it’s crucial to understand the architectural and historical significance of your period home. Research its architectural style, historical context, and original features. This knowledge will guide your renovation decisions and help you maintain the integrity of the home’s character.

Planning Your Restoration Project

Careful planning is key in period home restoration. Identify which features are essential to preserve and which areas require updating. Consult with architects or contractors who specialize in historical homes. They can provide valuable insights into maintaining structural integrity while implementing modern updates.

Preserving Architectural Integrity

Focus on preserving key architectural elements such as original moldings, fireplaces, and windows. These features are often irreplaceable and embody the home’s historical essence. When necessary, look for skilled craftsmen who can repair or replicate these elements using traditional methods and materials.

Updating for Modern Comforts

Integrating modern comforts is essential for contemporary living. This can include updating the plumbing, electrical systems, and heating. When adding modern amenities, like a new kitchen or bathroom, design them to complement the home’s historical character. Use materials and designs that echo the period’s style, ensuring a seamless blend of old and new.

Energy Efficiency in Historic Homes

Improving energy efficiency in a period home can be challenging but is crucial for sustainable living. Focus on non-intrusive upgrades like adding insulation to attics and basements, using draft-proofing techniques, and installing efficient heating systems. Where possible, opt for reversible solutions that don’t permanently alter the home’s structure.

Interior Design and Decoration

When it comes to interior design, aim to honor the home’s history while reflecting contemporary tastes. Use period-appropriate color schemes, fabrics, and furnishings. However, don’t shy away from tastefully incorporating modern elements that add comfort and functionality, such as updated lighting fixtures or built-in storage solutions.

Navigating Regulations and Permissions

Period homes often come with specific regulations, especially if they are listed or located in conservation areas. Familiarize yourself with local regulations and obtain necessary permissions before commencing work. This step is crucial to ensure that your renovation complies with legal requirements and preserves the home’s historical value.


Restoring a period home is a journey that requires passion, patience, and respect for the past. By carefully planning your restoration, preserving key architectural elements, integrating modern conveniences sensitively, focusing on energy efficiency, and adhering to regulations, you can breathe new life into a historical home without losing its essence.

For further guidance and inspiration, revisit our Expert Home Renovation Guide. Embarking on a period home restoration is not just about renovation; it’s about stewardship of a piece of history, ensuring it continues to tell its story for generations to come.