Ulster County Real Estate: Home Staging Tips

Posted by Cathy Lenz on Monday, March 21st, 2011 at 8:24am.

Ulster County Real Estate: Home Staging Tips

Remove Wallpaper and Take Up The Carpet


Ulster County Real EstateMost buyers today are looking for homes that are move in ready. This is why it is a wise decision for home sellers to remove their dated wallpaper and either lift the wall to wall carpet to show off existing hardwood floors or replace it with fresh carpeting.

If you have ever tried to remove wallpaper, you know that it can be a daunting task depending on whether the wall had been sized properly before the paper application. Sizing is applied to the wall as a glaze to seal the porous surfaces.  Unfortunately, if this step was skipped in the paper hanging process, to remove the old wallpaper can be a tedious chore.  Not many buyers relish the thought of spending a lot of time stripping wallpaper.  This is even a more immediate project when the paper has a design that went out of vogue in the 1970’s or 80’s.  Red apple borders and pink country hearts may have been the rage in those eras, however, they aren’t going to set too many hearts aflutter in the kitchen or bath designs of today.

Instead of taking the chance on a potential buyer sharing your love for cute designs in the kitchen or large cabbage roses scattered all over entire bedroom walls, play it safe.  Remove the paper and paint a neutral shade. Neutral doesn’t mean the whole house should be hospital white.  Soft beige/tans or grey/silvers are contemporary and allow the new owner to move in knowing their furnishings will be able to work with the existing shades.  Although they might eventually paint the rooms a bold red or a rich brown it isn’t an immediate task.

Ulster County Real EstateWall to wall carpeting was once a sign of prosperity.  To have hardwood floors was a house feature better hidden.  Today, allergies to dust and mold are a concern for many buyers.  Potential buyers with this concern are not going to be interested in homes that are carpeted all over. Buyers with children may be hesitant to have their precious toddler crawling across a floor that has an unknown amount of accumulated dust and dirt imbedded in the carpet fibers.  If you have ever removed carpeting, you can attest to the fact that even the cleanest homes with carpet harbor a large amount of dirt under the surface. 

Many homeowners are surprised to lift old carpet to find that they have hardwood floors beneath that are in excellent shape and require little to no refinishing. This is an added selling feature. Removing old carpet is a messy job, but not impossible, even for the most novice of DIY homeowners.

If the old carpet is over basic floorboard or the existing hardwood is in poor condition, it might be too expensive for the present owner to refinish the hardwood or add new wood flooring.  Although the likelihood of return on the house sale will be higher in doing so, sometimes the budget won’t allow for such a renovation project.  In this case, a neutral shade Berber carpet will make the space look and feel clean. 

Ultimately, the completion of these projects before you list your home will be worth the trouble.  As much as you dread the wallpaper removal or the flooring update, a buyer will dread it even more.  In a market with so many homes in the selling inventory, it is better for the homeowner to address these issues or the home might be viewed as dated or in need of too much work for the busy family of today.  That elusive buyer may not even want to take a look at your otherwise lovely property and purchase your neighbor’s house down the street.

This Ulster County Real Estate Home Sellers Tip is provided by: Anna Sember, of The Well Dressed House.

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2 Responses to "Ulster County Real Estate: Home Staging Tips"

Fred wrote: It's a buyers market, so you really have to stand out in a crowded space. Wallpaper especially, RIP it off and slap some paint on it. Be sure to use neutral colors like light browns etc. so any type of furniture will match.

Posted on Thursday, March 24th, 2011 at 2:55pm.

miss feliss wrote: Great article. A steamer is a great way to remove wallpaper, and I have found that most homeowners have great items already on hand that can take staging one step further ie. framed art and mirrors, plants, books, throws, etc. Even spending $100-$150 at Target on item like these to make the staging more model-home worthy can be an awesome investment to make a home more attractive.

Posted on Monday, April 11th, 2011 at 7:12pm.

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