We are thinking of restoring a 3000sf, 2-story plus attic, 5-bedroom home built in a prosperous Texas community in 1907. It has only four fireplaces and no other heating or cooling system. We are wondering how common it was at this date to still be using wood fires as the only heating source and whether a house of this size would normally have had fireplaces in more of the bedrooms. As a side note, there is electricity, indoor plumbing, and the house is connected to city water and sewer.
If we purchase this house, might it be cheaper and less invasive to the structure to install gas lines to the existing fireplaces and install high-efficiency, vented fireplace inserts to use as the sole heating source? We would also forego air conditioning unless we can't take the heat and, in that case, we would use electric window units.
Thanks for your thoughts!