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Jonathan Knight Moves His Family Farmhouse

Plucking a 110-year-old home from its original location, trucking it to a new lot and renovating it from rafters to foundation is no mean feat — but for Farmhouse Fixer's Jon, it’s an act of love.

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Photo: Shawn G. Henry/Getty Images. From: Farmhouse Fixer.

Why Did the Knight House Cross the Road?

Heavy lifting is par for the course when it comes to resuscitating homes that have fallen on hard times, but the heavy lifting restoration expert and Farmhouse Fixer star Jonathan Knight undertook on this project was something else entirely. Built in the early 1900s and owned by the Knight family for two decades, this handsome green house was built on land that’s subject to a conservation restriction — which means that only one house can stand on the seven-acre property. When Jonathan decided to build another farmhouse there, this one faced demolition.

Losing all that history? Not a chance. “We found the perfect spot to move the house just right down the road from where it’s currently sitting,” he explained. “It’s so much quieter and the views of the farm and the horses are amazing.” He knew what he’d be facing: “We’re not only going to renovate a house, we’re going to actually going to lift this house up and move it. I’ve never done anything like this and it’s going be such a fun process to watch it all and see how it goes.” When the dust settled, his family would have an even better place to gather.

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From: Jonathan Knight and Farmhouse Fixer

Before: Front Exterior

It’s no accident there’s no walkway leading to the front door. For two decades, the Knights have been entering and exiting the home through the back door in the kitchen (which Jon thought that was a crying shame). “This side is better! When you come over here [you see] the porch, the brackets [and] the little half round window up top,” he explained. “That wasn’t made in a factory — that was some guy actually tracing out the wood and cutting it and making it all pretty. This is such a focal point! When we move the house I want to have this facing the road, so that when you drive down the road this is what you see.”

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Photo: Shawn G. Henry/Getty Images

After: Front Exterior

At long last, curb appeal that actually faces the curb. Jon created both a broken-flagstone walkway and a herringbone-patterned brick path to welcome his family back to their headquarters. For the freshened-up front door, designer Kristina Crestin chose a rich shade of marigold yellow, which complements the home’s green exterior and trim and carries into the flower beds surrounding it. The relocation alone cost a pretty penny — Jon paid $40,000 to relocate the home, $17,000 to lay its new foundation, about $25,000 for septic and $10,000 to dig a new well — but he knew the legacy he was safeguarding was well worth the investment. “We get to save this house,” he said.

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Photo: Shawn G. Henry/Getty Images. From: Jonathan Knight and Farmhouse Fixer.

After: Entryway

Jonathan left the stairs’ handrail and newel post in their natural state: “I always loved this newel post and we never used the front door so no one ever saw it,” he said. The skirtboard and stairs now match the baseboards and front door, beckoning Knights and their guests to a thoroughly reimagined family retreat.

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