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Historic Home Painting in Birmingham, AL

Birmingham, Alabama is a gorgeous place that has a wide variety of beautiful historic houses. If you are a lucky individual who owns a historic home in this area, you know how much of a treasure they are.

However, historic houses take a bit of extra tender loving care to keep beautiful and pristine. Historic house painting takes a few extra measures and thoughts to do well, so it needs someone with the right knowledge to get right.

We here at The Painting Company of Birmingham are happy to showcase the details that go into historic home painting and all the small choices and factors you must consider when taking on this big task. Let’s dive in!

The Hows and Whys of Historic Home Painting

Planning a big home painting project has a lot of details to consider. You may have to move furniture, worry about the weather, pick a color, and even plan out time to work. A historic house adds more issues such as aging, hazardous materials, and historic preservation laws.

We’ll break down this project into 3 major subjects, the why, the rules, and the how. Let’s start with the why.

Reasons to Repaint Your Historic Home

Historic houses often have a lot of charm and even unique quirks about them that you love. Even the younger historic homes have designs that you’d never find in a standard modern home.

Due to their age, though, they need extra love and care in upkeeping them. Historic home painting often revolves around these 3 reasons, sometimes all 3 at once.

1. Restoring the Paint Quality

Nothing lasts forever and that is especially true of paint. Exterior paint will often take the most wear and tear, but even interior rooms will start to fade or chip. After a while, your historic home starts to look ragged and worn.

If your home has painted over brickwork, you may even want to remove the paint job altogether and restore the original brickwork. This can also take a bit of finesse, as being too aggressive with old bricks can damage the mortar or the brickwork surface.

2. Redesigning the Aesthetic

Historic homes can have fun and attractive design choices, but they may also come with questionable paint choices. Whether you’d prefer a lighter or darker tone or the color does not work with other elements of the house, a new paint job is a good time to redesign.

You should note that there may be some times where you cannot change the color or materials. We’ll get to that in the next section.

3. Switching to Safer Materials

While the design and construction of older, historic properties can have some wonderful values, there are also some dangerous mistakes. Some of the biggest come from lead-based paint and the use of asbestos.

Removing these materials from your home is key to your long term health and happiness. If you need to do major replacement of materials due to rampant asbestos use, you have a chance to repaint your home with modern quality paints.

Regulations on Historic House Repair and Restoration


While property owners are free to do as they please with their property, many historic homes have certain protections under Birmingham law. If you are in specified historic districts, you will have regulations to follow. This can often mean not altering your home to keep it in line with its original design.

If you do not know if your home is in a historic district, speak with your local government body.

Alongside historic preservation, government requirements may push you to get rid of outdated and hazardous materials such as asbestos. This is already in your benefit, but it does add another item to your project. Another essential consideration when selecting your home color, is the color of your roof. Quick! Can you name the color of your roof? A lot of people can’t because not many people pay any attention to their roof color. However, if your roof has some shades of red or orange to it – it will not look great paired with a color that has blue or green undertones to it.

Still feeling overwhelmed thinking about selecting the color of the exterior of your home? Schedule our team to come do an estimate and we will work with you and your family through the color selection process.

The Steps of Historic Home Painting

Let’s move on to how the historic home painting process works. The biggest part to consider is keeping in mind the age of the home. Unlike an intact, modern home, a historic home may need extra care or even part replacement.

1. Painting Prep Work
First, like any project, look over what you are working with before you start. Make a list of all the areas that need new paintwork and what kind of extra effort you may want to put into these areas.

This will give you a general idea of how long and expensive the project may be. This can also get you thinking about the next section.

2. Choosing the Right Colors
Picking the right color for your project is key. If you are not bound by historic preservation, then take your time to find the right colors that strike what you want for your home.

Bright colors can reflect joy or summertime, while cooler colors can have a greater relaxing effect. Color theory has a lot of concepts on how colors can affect mood and perception. The style of your home can also play a role in how well a color can look.

Interior colors also are far different from exterior colors, which brings us to the next section.

3. Establishing Exterior and Interior Work
Working with exteriors and interiors can change the project in massive ways.

With interior projects, you need to move furniture, cover carpets, and even lock away rooms from children or pets. With exterior projects, you need to balance working out in the hot sun with the potential for rain. The seasons can make or break a big exterior project.

Why You Need the Professional Touch

These 3 major categories give you a strong taste of what historic house painting can be. Before you gear up and get to planning, we recommend the help of a professional touch.

Historic homes need a clear eye and an extra bit of care. Dealing with lead paint, spotting aging wood, and even finding the right combination of colors will be a lot easier with the professionals at your side.

Your historic home is a unique and important part of your life. Treat it well and do the job right.

Finding the Best for Your Historic Houses

Whether you are aiming to recreate the old rustic beauty of your historic house or building your own, new touch of class, historic home painting is quite the process. Now that you have a better understanding of the concept, you can make the best choice for your own home.

When you are ready for more professional guidance, we are here to help. The Painting Company of Birmingham has the experience and expertise to make your house shine. Contact us today for more information.