Our family room has natural wood paneling (Roseburg). We've been told that buyers view paneling as a negative. What should we do with the?

Asked by Steve Lang, Morganville, NJ Wed Jul 4, 2012

paneling? 1) Remove the paneling entirely and paint the drywall
2) Paint over the paneling
3) Do nothing

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Mary Petti, Agent, Edison, NJ
Thu Jul 5, 2012

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.
1 vote
Rudie Neumann, Agent, Spokane, WA
Tue Jul 19, 2016
The hard thing about either removing or painting paneling is that it is so "final".

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.
0 votes
Joan Congilo…, Agent, Freehold, NJ
Sat Jul 7, 2012
If you can afford to remove the paneling and paint the dry wall that would be your best choice. Most buyers do not like paneling unless it is in a study or den
0 votes
Kyle G, Home Seller, Halfmoon, NY
Thu Jul 5, 2012
I would get rid of any wood paneling
0 votes
Edith Karoli…, Agent, Winnetka, IL
Thu Jul 5, 2012
Well, you mentioned several choices, depending on the quality of the paneling (thickness etc.) painting or whitewashing it, is one choice, the other is to just drywall over it and then paint......

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......

Sincerely yours,
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 :)
0 votes
Angela Baskin, Agent, Morganville, NJ
Wed Jul 4, 2012
Hello Mr. Lang, thanks for sharing your question here. As a realtor, i believe that a home seller should try to make the home as "neutral" as possible for the next buyer so they can picture themselves living there.
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 angelabaskin@kw.com and my website is http://www.baskinahome.com
If you have any questions at all, please feel free to contact me anytime!
Angela Baskin
0 votes
Wayne Odenbr…, Agent, Mountain Lakes, NJ
Wed Jul 4, 2012
Paneling is usually viewed as "my parents home". Most younger buyers don't like it. Painting is the cheapest solution and usually overcomes most objections. If you cannot bring yourself to do it, make the room as bright as possible. What do the curtains or drapes look like? Hang pictures that reflect contemporary tastes. That will help.
0 votes
Karen Buonomo, Agent, Holmdel, NJ
Wed Jul 4, 2012
We think a fresh coat of neutral paint should do the job! It will look clean and bright! We can assist you with all your real estate needs, and, we have a home stager on our team that can take a look and give you "professional" advice! Thanks Karen and Starr
0 votes
Steven Porzio, Agent, Holmdel, NJ
Wed Jul 4, 2012
I would recommend removing the paneling and paint the drywall.

Steve Porzio
Coldwell Banker
732 691-1668
0 votes
Bill Eckler, Agent, Venice, FL
Wed Jul 4, 2012
Yes, paneling is viewed as deated by many people and thus, less desirable. However, in my opinion, if the home is desirable in other ways buyers should be able to overlook this as a minor flaw that can be easily corrected.

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.

Good luck,

0 votes
Kim Hale, Agent, West Long Branch, NJ
Wed Jul 4, 2012
Depending in what you are willing & or able to do, I would offer to change it or give a credit for buyer to do themselves if desired.
0 votes
Ron Thomas, Agent, Fresno, CA
Wed Jul 4, 2012
I choose door #3;

no matter what you do, you will not make everyone happy.

Just remove half the furniture and all the personal stuff.
0 votes
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