Long-Distance Consulting

with John Leeke, Preservation Consultant


  • On smaller projects or when my involvement is limited it may not make economic sense for me to travel to your site. I may still be able to help by reviewing your situation and fielding questions from you, your tradespeople, contractor or architect.
  • Answers are based on my practical field experience and on research in my own library as well as other libraries to which I have access.
  • All information and communications are private and kept strictly confidential.


$700. minimum charge. A $700. advance payment is kept on account and gives you 8 hours of my time. I’ll charge against your positive balance account at the hourly rate of $87.50 with a 15 minute minimum billing increment. (If possible have a list of topics or questions when you contact me, rather than making several single question calls.) I’ll send a statement and log of activities (see sample below) when you’ve used up the $700. Then you can renew by sending another $700. if necessary. I take payments by check or PayPal where you can pay with your Visa/MasterCard.


Often I can help more effectively when you send photos of your project. Take overall shots of the whole building and close-ups of problem areas and areas of typical conditions. You can send digital photos by email attachment, or post your photos at an online photo service so we can refer to them via the internet with a web browser. If you take photos on film have double prints made and number each set so we can easily refer to each photo over the phone, then send a set of the photos to me.


On the phone use 207 773-2306. This line has a message machine. (I don’t use text.) Hours: 9:00am to 5:00pm (EST), weekdays. Mondays I try to stay in the office, other days I’m in and out. Generally I let my message machine answer the phone even if I am in the office. I’ll pickup if I can or get back to you as soon as possible. Call or email to make an appointment for more lengthy discussions.

For email use johnleeke@HistoricHomeWorks.com When I’m in the office I usually check my email once a day. Sometimes it is efficient for me to upload text or graphics to my website for your use, and then send you an email with a link to that webpage.

Written Reports and Drawings

Sometimes it’s difficult to understand complex issues over the phone. Often I can send you a quick sketch or existing drawing. If you need more complete written reports and drawings that will take longer than your 8 hours I can give you an estimate of costs and a written proposal. With your written approval I’ll proceed.


Please understand there are limits to how much I can help without actually being at your site with you to study the building first hand. It is up to you and your owner, tradespeople, contractor and architect to determine if the information presented is suitable for use on your project. Despite this disclaimer many have found it helpful to have ready access to someone with experience in the preservation, renovation and restoration of historic buildings.

How to get Started

Simply call (207) 773-2306 or email with an outline of what sort of help you need and I’ll reply to let you know if I think I can help you. We’ll have a brief phone discussion, you decide if you want to go ahead and then you make the payment. Then we are good to go.

Sample Statement & Log of Activities

Keep in mind this is just a log of my activities and not a copy of all the information you will have received. Most of my help for you will be in form of verbal discussions, answers to your questions, emails, etc.. Typically a few or several urgent issues are covered with some time remaining for followup questions and further discussions. If your account is not active for a while I’ll send a copy of the log with remaining time so you know where you stand.

In the following case I helped a homeowner who had some damage to the corner of his 1920s brick masonry house. The owner could not find matching brick. He sent samples and I identified the unusual brick as a sand/lime brick and located a source for replacements. The owner also had damaged pattern-face concrete block foundation stones. I sent articles showing how a handy mason or the local pre-cast concrete company could make some blocks to match the originals.