Mothballing Toolkit for Vacant or Infrequently Used Halls

When a building is vacant for a period of time, or used so infrequently that it is effectively vacant for long stretches, small problems can turn into big problems very quickly! Roof leaks, pests, vandalism and theft, and other issues can escalate without being noticed right away.

To combat these issues and help protect historic dance halls, Texas Dance Hall Preservation has developed a toolkit for “mothballing” vacant halls. In historic preservation terms, “mothballing” means securing, stabilizing, and weatherizing a building – in other words, protecting it from damage while it’s not being used.

When would we need to “mothball” a hall?

If a building is going to be vacant and unused for more than a month or two, or for an indefinite amount of time, it pays to check it for potential problems before you close it up. Some events that can trigger mothballing include:

  • Owner is trying to sell the hall
  • Owner’s health issues make it necessary to shut down the business for a while
  • The hall is already vacant and unused

How can I get a copy of the Toolkit?

The full-color Toolkit can be downloaded as a PDF document, free of charge.
Click to download the Mothballing Toolkit »

If you need a printed copy, please contact us.

Insurance for Historic Dance Halls

When historic dance halls are damaged by fire or floods, their owners frequently learn that the building is significantly under-insured. We get it! Our insurance agents rely on “comparable” properties in order to create appraisals of building replacement costs, and because dance halls are all so different, coming up with an accurate appraisal can be very difficult. In 2018, TDHP set out to fix that. Thanks to the generous contributions of donors during Giving Tuesday 2018, TDHP worked with Historic Appraisals LLC to develop a set of “comps” — insurance appraisals for six types of representative Texas dance halls. Now hall owners can request a relatively low-cost virtual appraisal simply by submitting photographs and answering questions about the building’s construction. The resulting appraisal can be provided to any insurance agent.

To learn more or request a virtual appraisal, please contact Historic Appraisal Services.

Our friends at Historic Appraisal Services also provide those services to National Trust Insurance Services, an insurance broker that specializes in providing property insurance for historic buildings. If your hall has trouble finding an agent or obtaining insurance, NTIS may be able to help. For more information, contact National Trust Insurance Services, LLC at 866-269-0944.

Support Texas Dance Hall Preservation

Your kind and generous help makes it possible for us to work directly with dance hall owners to provide technical assistance, workshops, grants for building repairs, and other resources. Please become a TDHP Member and make a donation today.