Repairs to historic properties

General principles of repair

If the maintenance inspection reveals some repair work is needed to your property, this section will help you work out what to do next.

There are some helpful general principles to keep in mind when repairing historic properties:

  •  Do as little as is required. It is important to keep historic buildings as intact as possible.
  • Use traditional materials whenever possible.
  • Bring in specialist building conservation expertise if necessary.
Historic England have further advice on thePrinciples of Repair for Historic Buildings.

Where to start?

Historic England produce a range of technical and specialist guidance. Some of the publications are aimed at professionals, but you may be interested in consulting them when applying for permission for repair work, or producing briefs for professional advisors or contractors.

Most of the guides also include details of where to get further advice. The guidance on window repair and repointing brick and stone may be of particular interest.

Common problems

The searchable SPAB Knowledge Base Common Problems section has advice on a range of topics including:

  • Condensation Energy efficiency in old buildings
  • Paint
  • Rainwater fittings
  • Raining penetration
  • Repointing
  • Rising damp
  • Upgrading timber windows
  • Wood-boring insects

From the SPAB Homepage either search the ‘Advice’ tab or use the search bar on the bottom right.

Building scaffolding

Improving energy efficiency

Historic England has also provided a wide range of practical guidance to help owners with saving energy in older and listed buildings.

A good place to start is the general guidance note: Energy Efficiency and Historic Buildings: How to Improve Energy Efficiency

More specific advice includes publications on: