The only thing greater than getting new hardwood floors installed in your new home is finding them hidden beneath old carpeting. We’re not sure why so many old homes today have beautiful hardwood floors covered by carpeting or linoleum, but then again, we’re probably a little biased. When you go to check out a potential home, put on your inner detective and do a little snooping around to find out if there are hidden hardwood floors.
Hardwood floors are so easy to maintain, it’s a wonder that anyone would want to cover them up. Then again, poor wood quality and bad installation can easily make a homeowner throw on some new carpeting and call it a day. Renovating and restoring old hardwood floors isn’t easy, and it isn’t inexpensive. Years of being on a budget may push some homeowners into opting for alternative flooring.
When you are doing a walkthrough of a home, check for a floor vent. This is a great place to sneak a quick peek at what’s underneath all that carpeting. Gently push up the vent and check around the edges. The carpeting shouldn’t be nailed down, so you can lift a little at the edges to get a look underneath.
If this plan fails, go down to the basement and look up. In old homes, if there are hardwood floors, you’ll find them in the dining room and living room. These are the rooms where you expect to entertain guests, so an owner typically spends the money here. Even if the hardwood floors don’t extend to the whole house, you could get lucky if one or two rooms have had hardwood floors installed at one point in time.
If flashing a light between the ceiling joists in the basement doesn’t reveal anything, talk to the owner or the realtor about lifting up a part of the carpeting. Some homeowners may already have a piece of carpet pulled up in a closet or inconspicuous area so that potential buyers can look, some may not. If you haven’t already purchased the home, make sure you ask permission before ripping up carpets.
Finding and restoring hardwood floors in your new home can add significant value. Even if you’re not selling, hardwood floors will never go out of style, they are easy to maintain, and they will last a lifetime.