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Why Historic Home Restorations are Taking Galveston by Storm

Updated: Dec 1, 2023

Restoring a historic home in Galveston can provide numerous benefits, including unique character, energy efficiency, a sense of community, increased property value, and access to financial incentives. It can be a rewarding and enriching experience to preserve the history and culture of a place and to create a unique and charming living space.

1. Unique Character

One of the main benefits of restoring a historic home is the unique character and charm it can add to your living space. Historic homes often have original features, such as woodwork, moldings, and fireplaces, that cannot be replicated in new construction.

2. Energy Efficiency

Many historic homes have been built with high-quality materials and construction techniques that make them more energy efficient than newer homes. Restoring a historic home can help improve its energy efficiency by sealing drafts, adding insulation, and upgrading to energy-efficient systems.

3. Sense of Community

Restoring a historic home can also help foster a sense of community and connection to the past. It can be a rewarding experience to be a part of preserving the history and culture of a place and sharing it with others.

4. Increased Property Value

Restoring a historic home can also increase its property value and make it more desirable to potential buyers. In Galveston, historic homes are often highly sought after due to their unique character and location in the city's vibrant and historic neighborhoods.

5. Financial Incentives

The City of Galveston offers a financial incentive program for the restoration of historic homes, which can help offset the costs of restoration projects for homeowners. This program is designed to encourage the preservation of historic properties and has three categories: substantial rehabilitation, new historic districts and Galveston landmarks, and new neighborhood conservation districts.

6. Economic Benefits

Historic restoration can have a positive impact on the local economy by attracting tourists, creating jobs, and increasing property values. Restored historic buildings and homes can also serve as a catalyst for revitalization and development in the surrounding area.

7. Cultural Benefits

Historic restoration helps preserve the cultural and historical significance of a place and its architecture. It allows us to connect with the past and understand the history and stories of a community. In Galveston, the city's historic landmarks, such as the Bishop's Palace and the Strand District, are a major part of its identity and attract visitors from around the world.

8. Environmental Benefits

Historic restoration can also have environmental benefits by repurposing and preserving existing buildings rather than constructing new ones. This can help reduce the demand for resources, such as timber, water, and energy, and decrease the impact on the environment.

9. Recent Progress

In recent years, there has been a significant amount of progress in historic restoration in Galveston. The Galveston Historical Foundation has completed numerous restoration projects, including the 1859 Ashton Villa, the 1887 St. Joseph's Church, and the 1894 Moody Mansion.

10. Tax Incentives

In 2015, the state of Texas established the Texas Historic Preservation Tax Credit Program through Texas House Bill 500 during the 83rd Texas Legislative Session that's worth 25% of eligible rehabilitation costs. There's also a Federal Historic Preservation Tax Incentive Program that offers a 20 percent tax credit on historic rehabilitation projects.

Historic restoration is an important part of preserving the history and culture of a place and can have economic, cultural, and environmental benefits. In Galveston, there has been significant progress in recent years in the restoration of historic properties, and the city is committed to preserving its rich history and architecture.

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