FORT WORTH (CBSDFW.COM) – Homes and neighborhoods protected by a historical designation are just as sought after in the frenzied DFW housing market as any others.

Lori Gallagher, a realtor and longtime resident of the Historical Fairmount District in Fort Worth, says historical districts are usually protected by three common overlay regulations.

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She says they are city, state, and federal.

The Fairmount neighborhood she says has a city overlay protection, and some individual homes have a state overlay.

The overlays’ basically dictate what you can and can not do to the house.

For example, in Fairmount, Gallagher says, “You can’t tear them down, you can’t change the exterior. If the brick is not painted you can’t paint it.”

For people wanting to move into this kind of neighborhood, she says there are a few things to keep in mind.

First, she says find a realtor who knows about the intricacies of historical neighborhoods.

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“If you’re coming into the area and you have no knowledge, you have got to have someone who is an expert, and you gotta do your homework,” she said.

In addition, she says be prepared to pay top-dollar.

In Fairmount, she says you can’t buy a home for less than $350,000.

“With the overlay protection it really gave value to the neighborhood and now when you look at price for foot and what the houses are selling for it’s more than the adjacent neighborhoods,” Gallagher said.

Also, keep in mind older homes will undoubtedly need repairs and some of them can be costly.

“Any house more than 50 years old you’ve got to check the electrical. They have panel boxes that need to be replaced,” she said.

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Gallagher also reminds people, the regulations meant to preserve mainly facades and sometimes interiors of these protected homes are enforceable and they can come with steep fines and penalties if they are not adhered to.