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Revive Historic Home Resources – Revive Buffalo NY

There was a time in Buffalo, when it was all the rage to turn single family homes into doubles, triples, etc. This was at a time when Buffalo was on the decline, and home owners decided that they could earn money by transitioning their dwelling into multiple units. Needless to say that today is a much different story, and now there is a dearth of single homes on the market. When they do come up on the market, there are bidding wars.

So what does someone do if he or she wants to live in the city, in a single home, but there aren’t any available?

Did you know that many historic homes may be eligible for NYS Historic Preservation Tax Credits? The New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation offers 20% tax credit to those who qualify, regardless of income. The incentive is to get home homeowners to restore their historic properties back to the way that it once functioned.

Is your brain already spinning, just thinking about the process – not just pertaining to restoring the home, but accessing the tax credits? 

That’s OK, it’s natural. Anytime something that appears to be daunting or too complex comes along, we tend to run away. In the case of Mike Brenon, it was seven years ago that he and his wife refused to live anywhere else but in the Elmwood Village, and he realized that if he was going to purchase the house of their dreams, he was going top have a long renovation road to haul.

“As time passed, we renovated our home with hard work, lots of pinching pennies, and the utilization of the historic tax credits that we kept reinvesting into the home,” Mike wrote to Buffalo Rising. “I developed a relationship with the NYS Office of Parks, Recreation, and Historic Preservation during this time frame.  Two years ago I went full time to UB for my masters degree and decided to open up a consulting company that would help homeowners with processing both simple and complex applications for homeowners that reside in eligible historic districts within WNY.  We are the only company of this kind – it simply has never been done before with a focus on homeowners.”

We are the only company of this kind – it simply has never been done before with a focus on homeowners.

For years, people have been clamoring for dedicated professional help when it comes to taking advantage of restoring historic homes in Buffalo. Instead of dealing with the headaches, a lot of people opted to move outside of the city due to limited housing stock that didn’t need an overhaul. Of course there are those who took advantage of purchasing homes with multiple units, and that’s great. Others decided to tackle the jobs themselves, which is also wonderful. But for some people, they don’t want to deal with the hassles of being a landlord, or they just don’t want a fixer upper that will drain the wallet or the pocketbook.

Now here you have a guy who has been through the process. Not only did he convert a mess of a house into a home that he and his wife are proud of, he did it by taking full advantage of the tax credits that were being offered.

Simple roof replacements, exterior paint jobs, and existing single family home renovations are all areas that we can help with.

“I believe that outside of the people, the residential and commercial stock of architecture in Buffalo is its greatest asset, ” Mike added. “It must be preserved and we must reward those who take the risk in preserving.  Where other people may think this is boring, my heart starts pumping when we learn about a new renovation to take on. My business partner Russ Burgstahler and I have been offering free eligibility checks to homeowners and paid consultant services to homeowners for the last eight months. We want to help the local homeowners living the seven National Register Neighborhoods capitalize on Historic Residential Tax Credits, because very few people utilize them! I used these tax credits to turn my home from a four unit, back into a single family home.  We want to help others do the same. Spring is coming and countless residents will simply leave thousands of dollars on the table for projects they are already planning on completing. Simple roof replacements, exterior paint jobs, and existing single family home renovations are all areas that we can help with.

I this is something that is of interest to you, check out for more information. Together, we can all do our part to restore the awesome historic housing stock that can be found in these districts. You can also contact Mike and Russ by visiting this page that features their respective contact information. Now get out there and start looking for the historic house of your dreams…

Written by queenseyes


Newell Nussbaumer is 'queenseyes' - Eyes of the Queen City and Founder of Buffalo Rising. Co-founder Elmwood Avenue Festival of the Arts. Co-founder Powder Keg Festival that built the world's largest ice maze (Guinness Book of World Records). Instigator behind Emerald Beach at the Erie Basin Marina. Co-created Flurrious! winter festival. Co-creator of Rusty Chain Beer. Instigator behind Saturday Artisan Market (SAM) at Canalside, Buffalo Porchfest, and Paint vs. Paint. Founder of The Peddler retro and vintage market on Elmwood. Instigator behind Liberty Hound @ Canalside. Throws The Witches Ball at Statler City, the Hertel Alley Street Art Festival, and The Flutterby Festival.

Contact Newell Nussbaumer |

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