"Your Old House: Guide for Preserving San Jose Homes" is a set of design guidelines, approved by City Council on August 19, 2003, that describes how to rehabilitate the exterior of San Jose's older homes in a way that is sensitive and thoughtful in order to maintain the character of individual homes as well as neighborhoods. The design guidelines were prepared through a coordinated effort by the San Jose Redevelopment Agency, Housing Department, the Department of Planning, Building and Code Enforcement, and the community at large.
The guidelines serve several purposes. First, the guidelines are available to any San Jose resident contemplating rehabilitation work to their older or historic home. Second, the City's Historic Landmarks Commission uses the guidelines as a basis for their review of Historic Preservation Permits for modifications or alterations to City Landmark homes. Finally, the guidelines support the Housing Department's residential rehabilitation program, called the Home Improvement Program, for property owners in Strong Neighborhood Initiative (SNI) areas.
Due to the large size of the guidelines document (nearly 50 MB) and to improve download speed, it is made available here in ten separate files, corresponding to each guideline chapter. Please select from the links below.
Chapter 1: Purpose of Design Guidelines
Chapter 2: Architectural Resources
Chapter 3: Rehabilitation of Historic Resources
Chapter 4: Additions
Chapter 5: All Projects
Chapter 6: Infill and Alterations to Non-Historic Houses
Chapter 7: Historic Districts and Conservation Areas
Chapter 8: The Hensley Historic District