Popcorn ceilings were all the rage in the 1970s. Today, it’s not uncommon to see eager homebuyers walk out of open houses disappointed at the discovery of these lumpy and bumpy ceilings. It’s not a secret that popcorn ceilings are no longer in style, but you shouldn’t write them off so quickly. Like most design trends, popcorn ceilings have their merits, even if it doesn’t appear that way at first glance.
Read on to learn more about why popcorn ceilings get such a bad rap, what benefits they bring to the table, and how to remove them if the cons outweigh the pros.
Popcorn ceilings are a type of textured ceiling that looks very similar to their movie theater snack namesake. This style of ceiling was immensely popular in the late 1970s for its ability to hide drywall mistakes. It’s difficult to get drywall surfaces perfectly level with no imperfections, but with the addition of a popcorn ceiling texture spray, those mistakes aren’t visible.
The reason behind why popcorn ceilings exist is pretty sound, so why all the hate for these textured ceilings?
While some homeowners oppose popcorn ceilings because of their appearance, there are other very legitimate reasons why plenty of people don’t want popcorn ceilings in their home. Let’s examine those reasons:
Most homeowners want rid of their popcorn ceilings. Sadly, the removal of popcorn ceilings is quite the undertaking. Get ready to spend a pretty penny if you hire professional help and to have a lot of fine white dust on your hands (both figuratively and literally) whether you hire someone or choose to do it yourself. If the ceiling is free of asbestos, you can tackle this DIY project on your own, but it will take a lot of work.
Here’s a quick look at the steps you’ll take to remove popcorn ceilings:
The cost to get rid of popcorn ceilings adds up quickly, especially if you live in a sprawling home. If you choose to go the DIY route, you’ll save a lot of money and will only spend about $30 to $200 for the materials necessary to get the job done.
If you hire a professional to tackle this project, you’ll pay around $1 to $3 per square foot for their labor and materials. Expect to pay more if you have a ceiling that tests positive for asbestos. A professional will likely charge $3 to $7 per square foot in the event of asbestos. This cost will be well worth it, as you don’t want to accidentally expose yourself to the asbestos if you make a mistake while doing the removal yourself.
To remove or not to remove, that’s the question every seller has on their mind. You will greatly increase the value of your home if you remove the popcorn ceilings, as you’ll give the home a more modern look and alleviate asbestos concerns in one fell swoop.
The size of your home will also play a factor here. The larger your home is, the more likely it is that buyers won’t want to take on a project of that size. This is even more likely if they can find another similar home in the area without popcorn ceilings.
If you remove your popcorn ceilings before you put your home on the market, you may see your home value increase by $2,500 for a moderately sized home of about 1,400 square feet. For much larger homes, you may see an added value of $25,000 to $35,000.
Take a look at other similar homes for sale in your area to see how many have popcorn ceilings and if you need to remove yours in order to compete with them.
Are popcorn ceilings really that bad and is it worth it to remove them? This depends on who you ask and what quality the popcorn ceilings — and the rest of the home — are in. Popcorn ceilings come in handy when you want to cover up drywall imperfections. If you choose to DIY your drywalls, you may really appreciate the mistakes you can cover with a quick and affordable drywall spray.
You may also find that you get a bit more peace and quiet when you live in a home with popcorn ceilings. Popcorn ceilings help cut down on sound, which makes them a great choice for rooms with high ceilings that tend to echo.
At the end of the day, popcorn ceilings are more of a true concern if the ceilings date back to before 1978 when asbestos played a role in their creation. Even then, if the ceilings are intact, you don’t have too much to worry about, so take your time to decide how you want to proceed and how much time and money you want to spend on the removal of popcorn ceilings.
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