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Repainting to Sell Your Home

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By : Lauren Kline    99 or more times read
When you've lived in a house for a while you tend to truly make that space your own. You have likely decorated your home in such a way that it works with your furnishing and reflects your personal taste. Unfortunately, as fabulous as those tastes are, prospective buyers are likely to not share them.

It is easy, on a weekly basis, to search the internet for new "home for sale" postings that show just how dissimilar some peoples' taste in decorating can be to your own. Ever consider living in a home decorated exclusively in red and orange velour? Well, someone has and I've seen the photo evidence. Most people would balk at that kind of decorating, even in the era that particular home was decorated in; someone at the time thought it was a fabulous idea though.

In general, if you have sponge painting, faux finishes, wall paper, murals, or coloured paint on your walls, you will need to remove it or paint over it. There are of course some exceptions to this but not many. I've seen bathrooms done in a very subtle parchment finish on the walls that looked beautiful and very unobtrusive; even more importantly, the finish on the walls worked with the fixtures in the room which wouldn't likely be changed because it was in a bathroom.

Wallpaper is one of the worst offenders of bad decorating left for potential buyers. Not only is it almost guaranteed to not work with their style and furnishing, but it's also a pain in the proverbial butt to remove or paint over. Buyers are factoring in things like how much extra work they'd have to do if they bought your house and wallpaper is almost always something they're going to want gone when they move in.

Faux finishes are another thing that homeowners add to their walls that often makes buyers cringe with dismay. While a scarlet faux-leather finish in your dining room might look stunning with your dining suite it's very unlikely that anyone else's dining room furnishings will look anything less than utterly surreal in that space. It is generally the case that a faux finish is added to a room to complete a particular look that you have designed to go with your furniture ... furniture that other people will not have!

Sponge painting is another monstrosity for buyers to have to deal with. Sponge painting hit its height of popularity during the 1980s and 90s but seems to be resisting dying off completely. The main problem with it is, like faux finishes, that the colour schemes are almost exclusively some combination that wouldn't go with anyone else's furniture. However, the secondary issue with this finish is that it leaves a texture of dried paint that is hard to cover up.

Finally, the last issue that I have seen time and time again in homes for sale is the incidence of children's rooms painted with bright candy coloured murals in them. While a mural is fun for a child, not everyone buying a house has a child and if they do, it's entirely likely that it's not the same age or gender as the one that you have. If you're really into wall murals there are some great wall stickers out there that are mural size but are completely removable (and reusable).

When you're putting your home up for sale, take the time to remove the wallpaper and paint your walls a neutral colour. To paint over a faux finish, murals or sponge painted walls you need to sand it smooth, prime it, and then repaint. The less YOU a house is, the more easily other people can see themselves living in that space.
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