How to Inspect an Old House Is Focus of Second Talk in “Brownstone Prep” Lecture Series

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    He’s been a forest fighter, bike messenger, deck hand, and surveyor of the spotted owl. But most relevant to owners and prospective owners of Brooklyn brownstones and townhouses, house inspector Rick Weisfeld of Old House Inspections was also a New York City contractor for decades and has renovated a slew of historic Brooklyn properties, including the old stable in Gowanus where he lives with his family.

    An expert on inspecting older homes, he’s going to be giving a talk on how to evaluate a historic Brooklyn townhouse or brownstone before purchasing. The second talk of the lecture series “Brownstone Prep,” organized by local real estate professional John Mazurek of Douglas Elliman, will point out some of the things to look out for and consider, including foundation, roof, electricity, plumbing and updates.

    Weisfeld will also provide tips on how to glean information on a specific home from city records, such as tax history, liens and violations, and past building permits.

    Starting the new year right with some architecture gazing in Bed Stuy. #bedstuy #brooklyn

    The first talk took place in November and featured author, writer and Brownstoner contributor Suzanne Spellen, who covered the history of Park Slope and its buildings and dove into subjects such as the differences between brownstone and limestone.

    The series of discussions fill a need in the area, according to Mazurek; he had clients asking lots of questions about old brownstone homes. “We wanted to create a forum where people could get their questions answered with no pressure,” he told Brownstoner.

    And as many old-house owners know, it can be difficult to find a certified inspector who has specialized knowledge of historic buildings; standard inspection advice is to replace anything in a home that is older than a few decades.

    The event takes place from 7 to 8 p.m. January 18 at the Old Stone House at 336 3rd Street in Park Slope. Please RSVP to For more information, visit Brownstone Prep or check out The Mazurek Team on Facebook.

    A suggested donation of $15 can be given at the door. All proceeds go to benefit the Park Slope Civic Council. Brownstoner is a media sponsor for the event.

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