The greater population of the United States moves on average every five to seven years, according to Fanny Mae, Freddie Mac, HUD, and other agencies tracking these statistics, unlike Europeans and others where the family home is a legacy passed from generation to generation. With those statistics, you might want to reconsider hanging wallpaper.
Wallpaper is a personal statement and even the mere fact of having any style limits the sales value of your home. Home buyers can’t see through the personality of others and place themselves in someone else’s home when their stamp is so heavy-handedly placed on it. If they can see through that handicap, they think about the work of removing wallpaper and paint.
Home buyers cringe at the idea of painting over wallpaper. They have heard the horror stories of patterns bleeding through the paint, seams showing, edges peeling. Not a pretty picture in the mind of prospective home buyers and realtors.
Wallpaper rarely opens up a space. It usually makes it more difficult to hang art that doesn’t compete with the paper’s pattern. When it grows old, it tends to look shabby–not shabby chic. It often dates a place.
But there is a solution if you insist on having pattern on your walls. It’s an old trick that is rarely used. Hang fabric with starch rather than wallpaper paste. The fabric peels off as easily as contact paper. All the rules for hanging wallpaper are the same for hanging fabric, except it’s done with starch. You will still have to paint when you remove the fabric, but removing the fabric is a snap. You don’t have to steam, soak, score, or scrape. Just peel!
When your realtor suggests you remove wallpaper, do it. Or don’t be surprised when home buyers low-ball their offer because they are anticipating the work involved to depersonalize your home. You may not understand why home buyers don’t love your selection, but you can wallpaper–oops, fabric–your new place and make memories there. After all, you are moving on. How would you like to move into other people’s memorabilia?