As a state of such immense history, in Virginia home remodeling can infuse modern and vintage by refurbishing recycled materials. Just because remodeling is intended to updated a house doesn’t mean every board and appliance needs to be recently created. For green-minded homeowners, not to mention history enthusiasts, incorporating refurbished trim, floorboards, and tiles into a remodeling project recycles and preserves quality materials that would otherwise be destroyed.

Any carpenter will admit that new woodwork and lumber are not nearly as enduring or well crafted as similar materials from a hundred years ago. Mass production has caused some of this, outputting trim and frame for quantity not quality, but the very nature of the wood has depreciated as well. First growth trees make for finer, stronger lumber, but those old forests have all been harvested or protected, so second- and third-generation trees are now used for lumber. Despite its age, wood in old homes remains better than fresh boards from a modern mill, and it can be obtained without harvesting more old forests.

Even old homes that have been condemned contain usable wood: poor foundation and framing does not mean every board is rotted. The difficulty, however, lies in extracting and preparing them for a remodeling project. Though refurbishing these materials preserves part of Virginia’s history and adds stronger quality to a house renovation, removing old (sometimes lead) paint can be arduous or expensive if done by a professional company. Fortunately, since most old boards are destined for destruction anyway, they tend to be inexpensive if not free, and the costs often balance out. And even if they end up being more expensive than new lumber, the value of the quality, conserved resources, and preserved history remains great.