Historic foundation to host workshop on tax credits to ‘live in a landmark’

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Historic Wilmington Foundation will help homeowners navigate tax credits to preserve and restore their properties, as was done at the DuBois-Boatwright House. Courtesy photo.
Historic Wilmington Foundation will help homeowners navigate tax credits to preserve and restore their properties, as was done at the DuBois-Boatwright House. Courtesy photo.

A restoration of state historic preservation tax credits last year has some homeowners ready to get back to work on some improvement projects that had been put on the shelf.

But navigating the ins and outs of the new version of the incentive program can be a bit more laborious than hammering nails and slapping on a fresh coat of paint.

To help, the Historic Wilmington Foundation (HWF) is offering “Live in a Landmark,” its fifth workshop in the Preservation for Profit series, from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. on Saturday, June 4 at Wilmington City Council chambers, 102 N. Third St. It’s the first such informational meeting held in the Cape Fear region since the tax credits were reinstated in January.

The workshop is a comprehensive review of the process of buying and rehabilitating a historic home.

“We hope to increase community awareness of the incentives available to home owners in historic districts throughout the region and how to plan a successful rehabilitation of an historic house,” HWF’s executive director George Edwards said.

After letting the credits expire in 2014, state lawmakers decided last fall to bring a similar version of the longstanding incentives back. The credits amount to 15 percent of the total cost, up to $22,500, of a home rehabilitation project. That amount is half what was doled out under the prior program, which was created in 1997. Credits have been reduced for income-producing properties, as well, giving 10 or 15 percent for improvements as opposed to 20. But now property owners are able to get the full amount of their credits in one lump sum instead of having to stretch it out over a few years.

Workshop participants can learn more about the incentives and standards, project planning, construction costs, financing and mortgage options and insurance for older houses from a variety of state and local experts. Staff from the NC State Historic Preservation Office and the city’s planning, development and transportation departments will lead the sessions, along with a host of bankers, architects, contractors and insurance professionals. Continuing education credits (CEU) will be available for architects and CEU’s may be possible for Realtors who self-report.

The daylong workshop may also include a visit to a home that was recently renovated using the state’s historic preservation credits.

The cost to attend is $25 ($10 for HWF members) if purchased by Wednesday, and $30 for members and non-members after June 1. Registration is available online through HWF’s website or by calling (910) 762-2511.

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