In most cases, curtains, drapes, and wallpaper of any kind are extremely taste- and style-specific. This is not a problem at all for a home you plan to live in. But for a home you’re staging to sell? That’s a different story. Preparing for a successful home sale means creating the most demand from the largest number of potential buyers. To increase the appeal of your home with more buyers, we recommend removing wallpaper and drapes or curtains in most cases when staging a home for sale.
Most buyers will not share your appreciation for the elegance of your custom curtains or the pattern of your wallpaper. Are you willing to gamble thousands of dollars in your hard-earned home equity by waiting for that one buyer who can either see past those things or who loves them?
Common Home Seller Questions about Curtains, Drapes, and Wallpaper in Home Staging
“Are you saying I have bad taste in drapes/wallpaper?”
No. We’re not anti-wallpaper or anti-drapes when it comes to decorating. The home you live in and enjoy should be personalized! Decorating is not staging, though. Staging is about marketing your valuable product (the house) in a way that will statistically net you a higher profit, less time on the market, and fewer buyer objections.
“But the draperies/wallpaper were very expensive! Don’t they add value to the home?”
No, they don’t. Value is based on your square footage and comparable sold homes with similar amenities in the immediate vicinity. Curtains and wallpaper won’t alter the value. What they can do is increase or decrease the mass appeal of your home and the amount of time it sits on the market.
“I’m afraid if I remove the curtains and/or wallpaper for staging it’s going to tear up the walls.”
It might, but guess what? Potential buyers will likely have the same thoughts. And they’ll add it to their mental list of projects to be updated when they move in, which reduces the amount of money they’ll be willing to pay for your home and the likelihood that they’ll even make an offer.
Occasionally, it is possible to paint over wallpaper, but this requires special prep (read tips from both Sherwin-Williams and Benjamin Moore that detail the circumstances where this is possible). A qualified, professional painter (we can make recommendations) is often one of the best investments when preparing your home to sell.
“But my wallpaper/curtains are so cute/whimsical/classy/neutral! Do I really need to take them down?”
Yes. Buyers will see what you want them to see. With very, very few exceptions, wallpaper and draperies put limits on the potential buyers can see in your beautiful home.
“Buyers are going to decorate this house the way they want to anyway. Can’t they see past my decor?”
No, most can’t. Statistically, only about 10% of buyers will be able to look past personalized decor and visualize your home’s potential for their lifestyle. Most buyers want a home that’s move-in ready. That means instead of seeing all the beautiful potential of your spacious kitchen or bathroom, they’re going to see dollar signs and a room they need to spend time and money renovating.
“I’m not sure. Maybe I’ll just wait and see what kind of feedback I get after I put my home on the market.”
By waiting to remove things about your home that, most buyers typically find objectionable, you limit your market and risk sitting on the market waiting for that one buyer who can either see past the wallpaper or who loves it — an expensive gamble for most sellers.
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