How to Restore Your Fireplace Effectively and Cost-Effectively
Your fireplace often is the most important locale in your house—especially if it is replete with family souvenirs, or over the years has provided much-needed heat in the winter season. If you live in Sydney or its vicinity—or in any other city in Australia, for that matter—you should follow specific procedures when restoring your fireplace. Experts say you should do your homework and know what kind and depth of restoration you want, figure out your options, seek professional help, and work within a budget to give your fireplace its previous lustre.
Do Your Homework
Before embarking on a restoration bandwagon, do the initial legwork. Delve into the Yellow Pages, contact Sydney’s healthy-habitat officials, and reach out to interior designers. The goal here is to know in advance what you want, most importantly in terms of restoration procedure. Determine the current condition of the fireplace.
Key questions include:
- Has the fireplace been covered?
- Where is the chimney breastwork?
- Do I need a new fireplace—and if yes, where to put it?
- How extensively should I restore the existing fireplace?
Figure Out Your Options
When it comes to fireplace restoration, your options are as diverse as rainbow colours, says Anne D., a Sidney-based interior designer I’ve known for years. Determine what residence type you have as well as the intended fireplace locale. Think about things like removals and architectural fitness, key elements that not only ascribe aesthetic prominence to your house but also make life easier for removalists when it comes time for you to move out of your residence. For example, if you have a Victorian or Federation residence, try to put back the cast-iron insert as well as the proper surround for the era.
Anne D., my interior designer friend, says you should not use a fireplace for any other purpose, say, a bookcase. She recommends you either reinstate the fireplace or completely close the area.
Seek Professional Help
When planning a fireplace improvement or restoration, reach out to as many professionals as you can. Besides interior designers, enlist assistance from fireplace coordinators—and architects, depending on your budget, needs and house type. Don’t forget removalists and other removal experts. They, too, can dispense relevant insight into things like location, access and mobility. These experts also can work with you to refine your needs, to understand the subtleties of fireplace restoration, and to tell you whether your budget will be sufficient or whether you will have to dole out tens or hundreds more dollars.
To give your fireplace its previous polish, know in advance what kind of work you want along with things like cost and architectural implications on your house in general. Talk to experts, such as removalists and interior designers. If you live in Sydney, you can also talk to Housing New South Wales and figure out your options, making sure you zero in on those options that comply with the law. Before you start the restoration, read the fire safety regulations and make sure you and the contractors follow the local safety rules!