Would removing that crazy wall-paper make a world of difference?

I am confident that we have ALL come across this dilemma at some point in our Real Estate dealings. The property you are about to list has awesome bones! The location is great and the client is going to approve a greatly attractive price point. Heck, your client has even eliminated all of the clutter and excess furniture in the home. They even understood how important it was to depersonalize as much as possible to appeal to more buyers and create less distraction during viewings and in photos.

This is your ideal client. And, to even go a step further, they seem to understand some of the major concepts behind Staging, how to maximize the available floor space, and how to effectively neutralize the decor without going overboard.

Now, just one last thing. There are a few major walls covered with dated and/or wild/bold coloured wall-paper. Or, the home seems to have those lovely wall-paper borders in every room.

Yes, the home-owner has heard through the grape-vine that wall-paper is once again "chic".

Great! Dandy!

When designing a home for living, owners can go with any old pattern or colour when choosing wall-paper. The main difference here is that we are trying to design for selling. So, we all know, leaving wall-paper in tact is allright, provided it is in good repair, applied professionally, and is neutral enough that any new owner could live with it, or at least tolerate it until they had time to change it.

Ok, so now, we are all on the same page. We have successfully educated the client enough to agree that the wall-paper has to go (because it is hot-pink with metallic lightening bolts throughout). And, the end result will be a property that absolutely appeals to the masses.

So, now we have to embark apon the journey that is wall-paper removal. This can be an absolute disaster. And, if not done right, this can mean way too many man-hours are wasted. We also want to save the integrity of the wall behind said wall-paper.

So, out there, we have all seen and read many different tips and tricks to easily removing wall-paper. And, maybe you have already found your preferred method. I just thought I would share with everyone, two more tips to alleviate some headaches for all parties involved in this unfortunate hurdle.

Wallpaper Removal Method #1

Add a heaping tablespoon-full of baking soda to each bucket full of warm water when stripping wallpaper to make it much easier.

Wallpaper Removal Method #2

Mix 1 part Laundry Fabric Softener with 1 part warm water in a spray bottle. Spray evenly over wall and make sure all parts of wallpaper are moist with the mixture. Let sit for at least 10 minutes. You will find that the wallpaper lifts a lot easier, leaves less residue behind, and makes the job a lot quicker.

Rhonda Wilson - CCSPTM
Owner/Operator of
Revealing Assets
Home Staging and Decluttering Services
We transform properties into highly
sought-after products that sell in half
the time and for 7-10% more money.
Through personal experience, extensive
research and training, and a compassionate
approach, we De-clutter living/work spaces for
up-lifting and positive life changes.

Edmonton, Alberta, Canada


Comment balloon 4 commentsRhonda Wilson • January 25 2010 03:18PM


The only thing that improves a property for sale than removing wallpaper is never putting it up in the first place.

I've had dozens of buyers walk out of homes when they see horrible (almost all) wallpaper.

Posted by Lenn Harley, Real Estate Broker - Virginia & Maryland (Lenn Harley, Homefinders.com, MD & VA Homes and Real Estate) almost 11 years ago

That sounds easy enough, I imagine that it will work on borders as well?

Posted by Linda Metallo DiBenardo (RE/MAX Impact, Lockport, Illinois) almost 11 years ago

Oh, it definitely works on borders as well. And, if you happen to be lucky enough to only be dealing with borders, rather than full wall-cover, then congratulations!

Yes, those borders still seem to be absolutely everywhere!!!

Posted by Rhonda Wilson (Revealing Assets - Home Staging Services) almost 11 years ago

We removed wallpaper a couple of years ago that must have been applied incorrectly. We had to steam it off and it still was a massive undertaking!

Posted by Betty Knowles, TeamKnowles REALTORS® - Springfield MO Real Estate (Southwest Missouri Realty - www.teamknowles.com) almost 11 years ago