Friday, February 19, 2010

Barn restoration

Our beautiful barn, which is in the picture on our header, is in need of some TLC. The foundation along one wall is crumbling. It is a field stone foundation over 100 years old. The good news is that the structural components of the barn look sound. A neighbor and new friend is a retired construction worker and specializes in barn restoration. He took a look and is interested in helping us. We would, of course, pay him for his technical assistance, while I would do part of the grunt work. I can work hard and am reasonably handy but lack the expertise to do something this complicated. We would support the side of the barn, take out the old rock and prepare the area, have a concrete contractor pour quick footings, and then he and I would build the new foundation from there. Lots of work I'm sure.

We would probably do one side of the barn at a time but do the whole foundation eventually. Then put a tin roof on it and re-nail the structural supports. I know, I know, I hate to put a tin roof on a historic barn, but cost wise we just couldn't afford to do it in cedar shake.

There is a tax credit available for the work. It's only 10% if you are not on the historic registry, but it's something. I don't think we want someone telling us what we can do with our barn, so we aren't interested in getting on the registry. The tax credit is 20% if you go on the historic registry.

I'm excited to do the work and get it done. It would be a tragedy to lose the barn. Colleen and I both agree it is a priority.

We were talking tonight about how blessed we have been to find this special place and have things work out to purchase it. I am doing the things I have dreamed of doing my whole life. Teaching part time and owning a working farm. I am so filled with gratitude.

1 comment:

  1. I understand how you feel about the barn. It's the heart of a homestead.