New wallpaper or a fresh coat of paint can quickly transform a room. Before you choose a new wall covering, think about how it will look, how difficult and expensive it will be to install and how well it can stand up to your family’s lifestyle.
Paint comes in several forms, including latex-based and oil-based. Flat, eggshell, semi-gloss and glossy paint vary in terms of sheen. Some types of paint are easier to clean than others, a point to consider if you have kids or pets.
Wallpaper can be made from vinyl or paper and can have a variety of surface finishes. Wallpaper usually has a design or pattern rather than a solid color. A pattern or texture can create visual interest.
If walls have imperfections and you apply wallpaper, the blemishes will be visible. Priming and painting is a better option for walls with visible flaws.
If your walls already have wallpaper, you should be able to remove it with the right tools and chemicals. If you don’t know how to remove wallpaper, hire professionals. Doing it incorrectly can damage the walls.
Wallpaper is attached to walls with an adhesive. Some types of wallpaper are more difficult to install than others. Lining up strips of textured or patterned wallpaper can be particularly frustrating. If you choose one of those options, you should consider hiring professionals to install it.
Painting a room yourself will be much easier. Before you paint the walls, you will have to cover any imperfections with spackle and let it dry. If you want to cover up a dark color, apply primer first.
Wallpaper is durable and some types are easy to clean. If you have young kids, wallpaper may be the best option.
Wallpaper is generally long lasting, but it can tear or peel. Moisture can cause wallpaper to come loose and can allow mold to grow. Wallpaper will not be the best choice for your kitchen or bathroom.
Paint is a better option for areas that can get damp, as paint repels moisture. Paint can look worn and damaged from scratches and dings, needing periodic repairs and touch ups.
The prices for paint and wallpaper can vary significantly depending on the type and quality you choose. Paint is generally less expensive than wallpaper and easier to DIY. If you decide to paint on your own, you will also have to purchase supplies, such as rollers, brushes, trays and drop cloths. If you’re looking to keep the cost low, painting will be your best bet.
If you want to sell your home, consider what buyers would like and what could turn them off. Some buyers like patterned wallpaper, while others dislike it and pass on your house because they don’t want to deal with the hassle of removing the wallpaper. Paint will appeal to a broader range of buyers.