With exquisite architecture, generations of stories, and the exclusivity that comes from owning them, there’s plenty to love about historical homes. But oftentimes, those beloved markers of our past come with not-so-beloved price tags and maintenance costs. As fun as they are to look at — they aren’t fun on our wallets! Is affordable historical home living even possible?
YES! And here’s how to find it….
Think Outside the Historical Home Box
One of the best ways to find an affordable historical home is to not actually look for a historic home at all (stay with us, we swear we’re not crazy!)
Instead, look for a home in proximity to a city’s historic district. If you keep an eye out, you can usually find much more affordable options right on the outskirts of historical districts, that are much more cost-effective than designated historical homes. The caveat is that they may not be homes with bones from the 1800s like we tend to dream of… but, sometimes you luck out and they are! Plus, even if they aren’t, they’re still surrounded by everything that makes a historical neighborhood so breathtaking.
Don’t believe us? Take a look at these listings that bring the historical home vibes without the historical home price tag!
Wethersfield Historic District — Wethersfield, CT
Painted a stunning robin egg blue, this nearly 5,600 square-foot historical home sits right on top of Historic Old Wethersfield Green, Connecticut’s oldest district that has maintained its 19th-century village appeal. Wethersfield historic sites are prime destinations for history lovers and architecture fans alike, as many of the area’s homes pre-date the Civil War and still have the elements we all know and love about historical homes.
This home’s interior reflects the Victorian style of the 1890s — cobblestone kitchen floors, original brick fireplaces and columns, pale-patterned wallpaper and stained glass window accents. There’s even a detached 1,000 square-foot space that currently serves as an art studio, but could easily be turned into an Airbnb retreat or guest house. For a price under $480,000, you won’t find a brighter, more elegant home in any other historic district!
Landmark Historic District — Savannah, GA
Colorful exteriors are certainly a trend on our list, and this Savannah, Georgia historic district is certainly known for its elaborate, brightly colored historic mansions! This darling townhome on the south side of the historic district is THE definition of an affordable historical home. It’s kept the vintage charm on the exterior, while providing contemporary updates inside, To top it off, the beautiful Forsyth Park is only two blocks away!
With estate prices in the district typically ranging between $1 million-$2 million, this home offers you a bevy of historical nuances at a fraction of the typical price. A light, bright living room and kitchen area are instant mood-lifters the second you walk inside. From a beautifully remodeled all-white kitchen to the earth-toned mid-century modern decor, there’s a timeless feel that radiates throughout the space. Priced just under $480,000, this three-story townhome has stolen our hearts — and we know it’ll steal yours as well!
Old Northside — Indianapolis, IN
This historic district got its claim to fame in the 1800s — this is where Indianapolis residents built their mansions! Although architectural tastes in Indiana shifted in the 1900s, when the district became a recognized historic district in 1978, the city has worked to preserve its history and original structural design. Several Northside homes have been converted into condos and townhomes, including this charming townhome right in the heart of the district!
We’ll admit it’s not quite what we’d call an affordable historical home, because while the price is right, the inside is much more contemporary. In fact, with its modern and sleek design, you might actually forget you’re among some of the oldest homes in the area until you step outside!
Still, it’s certainly worth a look at. Standout features include a contemporary all-white kitchen, spacious rooms and tall ceilings. Each room feels light and airy thanks to the large variety of window displays. For $525,000, this townhome is sure to catch the eye of any luxury-design lover — and proves you can mix modern and historical elements with ease.
Old Fourth Ward — Atlanta, GA
Nicknamed O4W, this district is the birthplace of Martin Luther King Jr., is home to one of the most thriving restaurant scenes in Atlanta, and has has no shortage of culturally inspired art to admire! This is one of Atlanta’s most sought-after neighborhoods, and this corner gem nestled in O4W offers the best of both worlds: an affordable historical home with easy access to things to do!
The home’s exterior gives a cottagecore-meets-suburban-life feel, while the inside has been updated with several modern features. With alluring sage green brick walls and a matching kitchen, this home has stunning, yet simple design features that truly invite you in. While located in the heart of one historic district, it’s also a close distance to several others, including Inman Park, Atlanta’s oldest neighborhood! At $625,000, this home checks off every box on our affordable historical home checklist — and then some!