Real-Life Real Estate Advice: How To Buy a Dreamy Historic Home

Real-Life Real Estate Advice: How To Buy a Dreamy Historic Home

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Adrienne Breaux
Aug 10, 2016

Is anyone else fascinated (and curious!) about how people happen upon dreamy dream homes? Mid-century modern charmers, historic Victorians, school buses...to name a few. I for one have always dreamed of owning a big old Victorian house filled with architectural detail and history. Well, color me jealous, because Christina of the house tour Modern Farmhouse Vibes in a Historic Home in Pennsylvania found just such a dream Victorian home—and she was generous enough to walk us through part of the process of finding, buying and renovating her historic home. It just might inspire you to start your own search...

When did this house become your home?

We bought it in December 2014, and then worked on renovating it until we moved in April 2015

(Image credit: Laura Olivia )

Just how does one find a charming yet near-dilapidated 100-year-old Victorian house?

This is a funny question—we weren't looking! My dad and I were going to start looking at houses to flip together, and this was the very first house we saw. We fell in love with the potential of this home, and it fit the needs of our growing family. It was pretty inconvenient timing (we had a 1 year old and I was pregnant with my daughter) but we made it work!

Love at first sight? Or did it take some persuading to get you on board the idea of investing time and energy into this?

Absolutely love at first sight! It was a major fixer upper, but the old architecture of the house sold me as soon as I walked through the door. No amount of ugly wallpaper, gross carpets, or crumbling plaster could cover the original beauty.


Be patient... It won't be your dream house overnight. You have to work for it and put life in it to make it your true dream home!


What was the home buying process to make this house yours?

The house was an auction—we didn't think we had a chance of getting the house. The house needed a LOT of work, so we could only afford to put in a really low offer. We went to the auction and there were more people there than we had hoped. But in the end - we ended up being the only people who placed a bid on the house! Suddenly, we had bought a major fixer upper - it was terrifying and exciting all at the same time!

(Image credit: Laura Olivia )

What's something you wish you had known about the process of buying a home before you took the plunge?

I knew renovating a fixer upper would be tough, but I don't think I realized how tough it would really be. We were so fortunate to have family that helped us every step of the way - we never could have done it ourselves! I wouldn't have done anything differently, but I would have gotten less frustrated in the middle of the process if I had the correct mindset.

Advice for someone going through the process of buying their dream home?

Be patient. This is coming from someone with very little patience. It won't be your dream house overnight. You have to work for it and put life in it to make it your true dream home!

See Christina's entire dream house tour → Modern Farmhouse Vibes in a Historic Home in Pennsylvania

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