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Are Older Homes Built Better? Your Guide to Buying an Old House

 (modified Jun 22, 2022)

If you had to choose between old and new construction, it’s a no brainer.

You love homes with a story to tell. The character you can only get from decades or even centuries of life taking place within their walls.

The crown molding left over from when home builders took more pride in their work.

The original dark cherry wood flooring kept in perfect condition all these years.

And every creek in the staircase echoing the thousands of footsteps it’s fought against.

If you’re considering buying an older home in the Athens area please use our checklist to make sure you end up with the home of your dreams, not nightmares.

Are Older Homes Built Better?

Like with anything, it depends. But the fact that an old house has stood the test of time is usually a good sign.

Older houses that used poor construction techniques and materials are often demolished and turned into something new.

So the old homes that stick around often prove that they really don’t make them like they used to.

Better Materials

It’s not unusual for older homes to contain materials that would be way out of your price range today or maybe not available at all.

Old growth wood is some of the strongest material to build a home out of. It comes from large trees that grew undisturbed, making their wood dense and heavy.

Most old growth trees are endangered now so even if you have the cash it can be hard to get your hand on some. The shade and privacy they create for your home is invaluable

Buying an Older House


Older homes are often in the best parts of town. Because cities tend to grow outward you can find some of the largest older homes close to downtown. A newer condo or townhouse in the area can be of comparable price but with much less yard space and square footage.

Older homes, especially in suburban areas like Athens, were built large to entice city dwellers and make up for the commute.

As the suburbs grow developers worry less about attracting new homeowners and more about maximizing the number of units on their land.

Buying an Old House Checklist

Antique homes are beautiful, spacious, and exude an old world charm you just can’t get with new construction.

But buyer beware. Older homes can have lots of unique, obscure, and downright strange problems to deal with.

Before plopping down your down payment on that old Victorian, use our buying an old house checklist to cover anything your inspector may have missed.

  • Asbestos: This is by far 1 of the biggest health threats in older homes. Often if it’s still in good condition, most pros will recommend leaving it in peace. Asbestos doesn’t become dangerous until it’s airborne. Brittle, damaged asbestos will have to be removed immediately. Keep in mind this can cost thousands depending on how much there is and how hard it will be to remove.
  • Lead Paint: Just like asbestos, lead paint is harmless until it gets in the air. It’s also expensive to remove.
  • Foundation Problems: Older homes often have foundation problems. The structure a house rests on is called its sill plate. The entire weight of the house rests on this plate which can weaken from water or termite damage.
  • Faulty Wiring: Never, please repeat, never buy a home with wiring issues. Almost all homes built before 1950 used a system known as knot and tube wiring. This method is so unsafe most insurance companies will refuse to cover you.
  • Faulty wiring is so dangerous because an electrical fire can smolder inside your walls for a long time before bursting into flames.

Ready to Buy That Old House?

Did the house you’re thinking of making an offer on making the cut?

Great! Bin There Dump That can help you with the next step: remodeling.

Sure you love the classic feel of your vintage home but it’s going to need some modern updates to keep up with your lifestyle.

We’ve already answered the question, “are older homes built better?” They are. But that doesn’t mean you can’t improve on them.

Remodeling is stressful enough. Between the noise, mess, and delays, the last thing you want to do is figure out how to get the dumpster to the landfill.

That’s why we take care of everything for you. All you have to do is fill up your dumpster and we take care of the rest.

No waiting like you have to do when you use the city’s dumpsters. You can have any size dumpster at your door within 24 hours.

And unlike other dumpster rental companies, we care about your property as much as you do. That’s why we always lay down wood boards to prevent any scuffs or scrapes from messing up your pristine driveway.

So what are you waiting for? That beautiful old house isn’t going to clean itself.

Book your dumpster now!