When faced with the task of restoring an old, severely dilapidated building, it can be difficult to know where to begin. Here are the two forms of repair work you should perform first before you move on to other restoration activities.
Fix any damaged ceilings
The very first thing you should do at the beginning of the restoration project is hire a contractor who specialises in ceiling repairs to fix any damaged ceilings within the building.
The reason for this is as follows; damaged ceilings can be highly unstable and are likely to give way if placed under too much strain.
This instability could lead to two serious problems. Firstly, if several members of your construction crew are performing work in the room directly above a damaged ceiling and it cannot withstand their combined weight, it could collapse.
This, in turn, could result in these workers falling several feet, through the opening in the broken ceiling. A fall like this could leave them with serious, life-threatening injuries.
Anyone who happens to be present in the room where the ceiling is located could also be struck and hurt by falling shards of plaster.
Secondly, even if there is no-one around when the unstable ceiling collapses, it could inflict major damage on the room in which it is located. The weight of the ceiling materials landing on the floor could break the tiles or floorboards and destroy any furniture in this area of the building.
As such, it is essential to arrange for all of the damaged ceilings in the property to be repaired before performing other restoration work.
Address any wet rot on the building's structural framework
Older properties are often poorly-insulated. As a result of this, they tend to be very damp. This dampness can lead to the growth of a decay fungus called wet rot on a building's timber framework.
It's important to address this issue promptly, before carrying out other repair work. The reason for this is that, if the building's structural integrity is compromised by wet rot on the framework and it goes unrepaired, the other restoration work that you perform may not produce the results you were hoping for.
For example, if you ignore the problems with the framework and instead focus on repairing the roof, you may find that, within a few weeks of carrying out this task, the new roof begins to sag.
This sagging can occur if a building's framework has been weakened by wet rot to the point where it can no longer support the weight of the roof.
In this situation, your efforts to improve the roof would have been a waste of both time and money.
Given this, it is vital to inspect the building's structural framework and repair any sections of it which are damaged by wet rot before you move on to restoring the rest of the property.