Tips for renovating an older home

New paint, updated electrical wiring pays dividends

Q: We just bought a house in Alameda, Calif. It was built in the 1930s and hasn’t been touched since. We got it for a good price and are viewing renovations as a long-term project. We had a termite inspection, a roof inspection and a home inspection.

A little termite work was done under the house, and the home inspector pointed out some problems, mainly with the electrical system. The roof has a few more years of life left and no evidence of leaks. The wiring is old knob and tube, so plugs are not plentiful.