If allergies are in question.....hardwood or tile all the way. If there are pets involved hardwood or tile again would be the best choice.
Carpeting is less expensive and creates a warmer feeling. From a resale perspective wood or tile will hold up better and show better as well.
Our advice is to refinish the hardwood floors and use area rugs to accomplish the same effect as carpeting and enjoy the best of both worlds.
I would definitely go with refinishing the hard wood floors. Wood floors typically show terrific online and buyers are still looking for this feature.
Selling a home in a "Buyers Market" is a lot about making your home (or in this case your parents home) stand out from the rest. Refinishing wood floors is one way to do this. If you want some great ideas on how to aggresively market homes in Waunakee check out our Madison Real Estate Show blog (link below). Our 2009 Online Marketing Plan is available for download on the home page right column. Terrific ideas on what you should look for in the marketing of your parent's home.
Oh and if you need some help with figuring out Waunakee's Real Estate Market pricing wise check out- http://www.JVMarketSnapshot.com
John & Vicky
If it can be refinshed properly, I would go with the wood.
I live and specialize in Waunakee and could view the house if you would like and give you my recommendations for the floors and any other area that would or would not give you a return on your investment, etiher through selling quicker or price. I can also refer several quality local contractors, if needed.
Feel free to contact me through the link below.
Good luck with everything.
What type of hardwood floors are they? I would also consult a flooring expert and you have Schreffler Custom flooring in Waunakee off of Division St who would do that for you. Wood floors are very attractive in any home. They only time that I would say to cover wood floors up in a home is if they are parkay wood floors. This is my opinion as this flooring style is not in and could detract from the value of the home.
Are the wood floors in the bedrooms only or are they throughout the home? It is hard to say for sure giving that I have nothing to see to give you a true analysis, but as for a general rule I would say to refinish and have that be a main feature of your home.
I have attached a link to a good article about not only finishing wood floors but getting your parents home ready all together.