Selling a house with crappy hardwood...

sherwinsgirlAugust 30, 2011

We are going to be putting our house on the market next year, and are trying to decide what to do with our floors. The house originally had refinished hardwood in the living room (which is still pretty good, only a few scratches), and carpet in the rest of the bedrooms, stairs, and hallways. The rest is linoleum. We had an awful cat and had to rip out all of the carpet. There are hardwoods everywhere the carpet was. The problem is that there is paint literally all over the floors from when a previous owner did the walls. And, the floors aren't in very great shape.

So basically, our dilemma is... Leave the floors and offer a carpet allowance or put in cheap carpet. We have 3 kids and 4 dogs so there is no way I'm putting carpet in anytime soon for it to possibly get ruined in any way.

Do you think people would be turned off by the iffy floors?

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ottawavalleygardener

My opinion (as a layperson, not a real estate professional) is that it depends on your market and neighbourhood, and that you will have to price accordingly. I wouldn't put in cheap carpet because the new buyer may want to refinish the hardwood anyway. When I bought my current home, the gleaming hardwood is what sold me on the place. The greater issue may be trying to sell with a house full of kids and dogs! (I have two dogs, so can relate!)

    Bookmark   August 30, 2011 at 10:28AM
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brickeyee

"Leave the floors and offer a carpet allowance or put in cheap carpet."

Or have the floors refinished.

    Bookmark   August 30, 2011 at 10:29AM
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gmp3

Get several estimates on refinishing the floors. You will take a huge hit on price even with a carpet allowance. people cannot see past ruined carpet.

    Bookmark   August 30, 2011 at 10:39AM
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adellabedella_usa

I think I would look at having the floors refinished also.

    Bookmark   August 30, 2011 at 10:58AM
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terriks

My number one choice would be to refinish the hardwood floors. My number two choice would be to leave the floors as is. I would rather see hardwood floors that I could refinsh than to cover them with carpet that I might tear out.

    Bookmark   August 30, 2011 at 11:47AM
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Carol_from_ny

Paint on floors can be cleaned up with some elbow grease and time depending on what was splattered and how large an area.
You might not have to do a full fledge refinishing job if it's just splattering that needs cleaning up.
We bought a house not so long ago that had splatters on the floor. A plastic bread clip, a few plastic scrubbies and some latex cleaner got most of it off the floor without doing harm to the finish.

    Bookmark   August 30, 2011 at 12:27PM
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weedyacres

I would price cheap carpet and refinishing, and do whichever is less expensive. If you put in carpet, the place will still look nice and you can say "hardwood underneath," which is attractive to many. Most people would expect that any wood underneath would need to be refinished to some degree, so you're not giving them something to dock you on price over.

Don't leave the floors as-is and/or offer a carpet allowance. Just make the fix one way or another. Most non-GW-ers find it hard to look past ugly.

    Bookmark   August 30, 2011 at 1:20PM
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brickeyee

A house that needs significant work is not going to attract as many full price buyers.

It attracts bargain hunters (I know because I do it as a business).

Find a beat up house, negotiate a lower price, then renovate and restore for re-sale.

    Bookmark   August 30, 2011 at 4:12PM
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LoveInTheHouse

I'm in the flooring business. I love hardwood floors but refinishing hardwood probably costs double what you'd pay to have cheap but halfway decent carpet put in. Plus refinishing is a mess. And takes more time. I'd put in some carpet right before you're ready to sell and then let them know there's hardwood underneath.

    Bookmark   September 1, 2011 at 10:39PM
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aidan_m

"refinishing hardwood probably costs double what you'd pay to have cheap but halfway decent carpet put in"

Nice refinished hardwood is more than double the value of halfway decent carpet.

To do nothing with the floors will diminish the value of your home significantly more than the investment in new floor coverings. Everyone here agrees on that. I think refinished hardwood will have a greater return on investment than carpet, in terms of overall value.

    Bookmark   September 2, 2011 at 11:21AM
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ottawavalleygardener

Four dogs. She has four dogs! No way refinished hardwood would last, unscratched, for two days.

    Bookmark   September 2, 2011 at 11:33AM
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sheilajoyce_gw

No, with 4 dogs, I would not refinish anything.

    Bookmark   September 3, 2011 at 5:17PM
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brickeyee

"Four dogs. She has four dogs! No way refinished hardwood would last, unscratched, for two days."

If you keep the dogs mails trimmed scratching ids not an issue.

The nails are not supposed to touch a hard surface the dog is walking on.

    Bookmark   September 4, 2011 at 9:38AM
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ottawavalleygardener

brickeyee, I have two dogs & even with short nails, their play affects the floor. Do you have dogs?

    Bookmark   September 4, 2011 at 10:24AM
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brickeyee

"Do you have dogs?"

Just on e right now, but i had three Labrador retrievers till they died one by one from old age (the last was almost 15 years old).

You teach them not to play in the house and damage things.

Rough play is for outside.

    Bookmark   September 4, 2011 at 2:54PM
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badgergrrl

Correct. We have had dogs on our hardwoods for years and nary a scratch. Their nails get trimmed regularly, but the concrete pad in the dog run helps too. But, yes, ours are also taught that rough play is for outside, or the dog park.

I would be more worried about people with sand / dirt on the bottom of their shoes walking on them, long-term. They're h*ll on hardwoods. No shoes in the house. (Although, friends with big dogs have designated 'house shoes' that are clean, keeps those newfs from breaking your toes if they step on them. lol)

    Bookmark   September 4, 2011 at 3:45PM
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ottawavalleygardener

OK, now I feel guilty for letting my dogs play indoors. They also play outdoors in our fenced yard, and at our cabin!

And they do sleep a lot... :-)

    Bookmark   September 4, 2011 at 4:44PM
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brickeyee

"Their nails get trimmed regularly, but the concrete pad in the dog run helps too. "

One of the problems with almost every dog ail cutter is that it leaves very sharp edges.

After trimming the nails you need to go over the edges with a nail file to round them.

I bet your concrete is doing the same thing, taking off the sharp edges.

"OK, now I feel guilty for letting my dogs play indoors."

I let them play rough indoors, but only on a rug.

Filings the nails after trimming is really needed.

    Bookmark   September 4, 2011 at 5:53PM
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