I had some lovely but "old" looking pine planking in my family room. Rather than take it down, I just dry walled over it then painted it a neutral color.
I used 1/4 inch thick dry wall and just added new wood mouldings on top and bottom. Looks great and is cheaper than removing the paneling. It also served as even better insulation since my family room backs to an uninsulated garage.
If the paneling is glossy, or has been dusted or polished with anything like pledge or Murphy's oil soap, and want to go the just paint over it route, it will have an oily coating in some spots that will make even primer hard to stick without first scrubbing all the walls thoroughly with a mild soap and water solution.
Now to the paneling itself. Yes people consider paneling to be "old fashioned" and buyers will often over estimate the cost to remove, especially if they don't know what's behind it. It also tends to make the room look dark and uninviting. What ever you chose to do, I do suggest you have a professional do the work (painting and/or dry walling). A small cost now will reap benefits later.
Personally, I like many of the lighter colored, high-quality paneled walls that I have seen.
But I've studied it as completely as I can and, as a Realtor, I am stuck with the facts. There are exceptions of course, even "miracles" but if you want to sell your house as quickly as possible at the highest possible price, remove the paneling and replace it with drywall if it's in the entry or main living area. It's really rather inexpensive if you are able to do it yourself. At the least, paint it.
But if it is in a basement, is a lighter color and is pretty nice quality, it might not hurt the sale too much. It still won't be a plus, though.
If it is very dark wood, but solid and good quality, you have have it sanded and restained much much
lighter.... it just really depends on the remainder of the home, the room itself, i.e. how does it fit
into the entire feel of the home.....
Hard for us to make the best recommendation, not being able to see the home....
But if you are thinking about selling, and if - I hope - you will do so with the professional experience and market expertise of a local Realtor, that Realtor, when viewing your home, will be able to recommend the very best choice to brighten up the room......
Edith YourRealtor4Life & Chicago and Northern Illinois Expert
Working always in the very BEST interest of her clients, Buyers, Sellers and Investors alike....
Covering for @Properties the city of Chicago, all N and NW suburbs, the fine homes on the
North Shore, and many of the W and SW suburbs, and with her trusted Partner Agents all of
the US and worldwide properties. Edith speaks French, German, some Spanish and other.....
@Properties, 30 Green Bay Rd, Winnetka, Illinois 60093 ---- EdithDoesItRight@yahoo.com or EdithSellsHomes@gmail.com Check out my website at htttp://www.tinyurl.com/MeetEdithHere
get to know me better and learn about my experience, expertise, services available and letters of recommendation of former clients..... Also you can sign up on my site to search for properties in my expanded service area. HAVE THE MOST WONDERFUL DAY :)
As far as paneling, I feel that painting is the most cost effective fix and the quickest by far. Do you currently have a realtor that you are working with? If not, I can assist you with the sale of your home!
Here is my contact information...Angela Baskin, Keller Williams Realty West Monmouth-732-536-9010 Ext 326 or my mobile at 718-344-7862. My email address is email@example.com and my website is http://www.baskinahome.com
If you have any questions at all, please feel free to contact me anytime!
In the event you are looking for some way to kill time and soend money with no guarenteed return on your investment going the home inprovement route could be challenging, fun, and a beneficial learning experience.