Nearly every staging report I’ve written has advised the sellers to take down the wallpaper prior to their home sale. Usually the sellers moan and say they don’t want to spend the time stripping and repainting, nor do they want to pay someone to do it for them. Well, that’s exactly what the buyers are thinking, too!
But wallpaper can work in a home for sale under the right conditions. Does yours pass these tests?
1) How old is the wallpaper? If it was installed much more than 10 years ago, it’s probably a) dated and/or b) difficult to take down. Styles and tastes have changed since then, and so has the technology behind newer editions of wallpaper, making it much easier to remove. So if it’s newer, it might be a keeper.
2) Is it relatively taste-neutral? A pattern like the grasscloth shown above, in a neutral color, is more likely to be accepted by most buyers than a strong, highly unusual color or pattern. Neutral – it can stay.
3) Will it work with more than just your decorating scheme? If the wallpaper is going to look odd with anything but your current furnishings, it’s time to take it down, unless you are planning to sell your furniture and accessories to the buyer as well (that does happen occasionally, but there needs to be a separate Bill of Sale outside of the real estate contract).
4) Where and how is it installed? Wallpaper borders were all the rage in the 80s and 90s, but not so much today. Take them down! And if you have it everywhere – walls and ceiling both – take it down. Too much of a good thing just…isn’t good.
Wallpaper can indeed be beautiful and is used in many styles of interior design.The powder room and foyer are great spaces to employ wallpaper to add design interest. It is also becoming increasingly popular to back the inside of a cabinet with wallpaper to make the design more interesting and the objects in the cabinet visually pop.
Photo from Ask the Design Diva
Photo from Tidbits and Twine