Thinking of buying a home with hardwood floors? Here are a couple of tips on how to check for hardwoods, and a funny real estate story.
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[00:00:00] Hardwood floors, 3 tips and one funny story coming up. [00:00:03][3.1]
[00:00:07] You're listening to the Bo Knows Real Estate Podcast tips and advice for home buyers, sellers and owners with award winning Remax agent Bo Kauffmann. [00:00:17][9.9]
[00:00:22] OK. So today we're going to talk about hardwood floors for a number of reasons. They've become really popular again. Some people think that they're just cleaner. They trap less allergens and dirt than carpets. Some people feel that a nicely finished floor adds a lot of warmth and color to the room and to the house adds a lot of class. For whatever reason, hardwood floors are a sought after feature in a house. [00:00:43][21.7]
[00:00:44] So I can tell you that a house built between the nineteen hundreds and up to the late 1960s, it's quite possible that that house was built with hardwood floors originally. I can also tell you that in the 1970s something changed. Builders either got cheaper, maybe hardwood floors got too expensive, but the Qualicos, Flair's, Greentrees and engineered Homes of the 1970s and onwards did not include hardwood floors unless they were a custom built or especially requested by the buyer. Now, remember that fact because there will be a test at the end not saying 100 percent for sure that that question will be on it, but it would be a good one to remember. Wink-wink. [00:01:20][36.0]
[00:01:21] If you're looking at something in River Heights built in the 40s and 50s, odds are that there is hardwood floors under those carpets. But how can you tell if the carpets are on there? Now keep in mind you're the buyer. That's not your house yet. You can't just peel back the carpet and damage stuff for the seller. So how can you tell? Well, there's a couple of really neat little tricks that you can use. [00:01:42][20.5]
[00:01:43] The first one would be to look inside the closets. So go in the hallway, open a hallway closet. Again, odds are that if they laid carpet, they might not have laid it on the floor in the closet. So if you look at the floor in the closet and it's hardwood floors, well, then the chances are most likely that the hallway is also hardwood floors underneath that carpet. Just because you found carpet in one spot doesn't mean it's everywhere. So quite often they've had the living room, dining room and hallway done in hardwoods. [00:02:11][28.7]
[00:02:12] But the bedrooms might be another story. So you have to look in the closets of each bedroom as well. And if you find it inside the master bedroom, make sure you check the second and third bedroom, because I just listed a house in the west end of West St. James, almost near the perimeter where the hardwoods are in the master bedroom. But the second and third bedroom are actually tiled floors. So what do you do if you can't find hardwoods in the closets? [00:02:35][23.3]
[00:02:36] Well, another neat little trick is to lift the heat register, the floor heat register. So you lift that piece of metal out, that little diffuser plate and then you can lift the edge of the carpet and tell whether there's hardwoods or just plywood under there. [00:02:50][13.5]
[00:02:50] So here's another tip. If you're looking at a two story home, or a story and a half. Whatever the configuration is, if it has a second floor, just because he found hardwoods on the main floor, it does not mean there's hardwoods on the second floor. In fact, quite often there is not. Quite often the second floor is covered either in vinyl, in tiles or they used fur or even pine. That might be wood, but it doesn't have the nice grain that you're looking for. Most of the hardwoods are either oak or maple. So but if you have a house built in the 1920s and 1930s, the upstairs probably does not have hardwood floors unless an owner subsequently added it. [00:03:28][37.7]
[00:03:28] And one more tip. So you're walking into a house that's built in 1945 and the current owner has taken it upon himself to rip the carpets out, just to show you that there's hardwoods under there. That's kind of a neat little, little trick. It's not a trick, but it's a neat little thing to do. If you're selling the house and you want to show the prospective buyer that there is hardwoods on the floors. Now you walk through it and you see all these black stains, which quite often are water damage. And if if a black round stain appears in the middle of the living room or near one of the interior walls, it's probably a place where somebody had a plant sitting for many years. And as they were watering it, the water leaked and damaged the floor underneath it. That's fixable. [00:04:10][41.6]
[00:04:11] But as you walking through the house, you see that it definitely does have hardwood floors. But they're in really rough shape. Maybe they got some deep gouges in it from a previous owners dogs that the claws have torn it up or just wear and tear away or marks, you know, like I said, those stains. So a common expression is, oh, yeah, you can easily refinish these for a couple of bucks a square foot. Well, not so fast. There is a finite number of times that you can finish refinish hardwood floors. So if this house was built in the 20s, then it was refinished in the 50s and then again in the 80s. Those hardwood floors are getting mighty thin because each time you refinished them, you send off an eighth or even three sixteenth of an inch off the top. [00:04:51][40.3]
[00:04:52] So if you're looking at floors now that have been refinished twice already and they've got deep gouges in them, you may or may not be able to refinished them. All I'm saying is that when you go into the situation, don't automatically assume that you can bring those hardwoods back to their original shine. You may not just be aware of that possibility. Now, when I come back, when I have a funny story to share with you regarding hardwood floors. [00:05:14][22.1]
[00:05:17] You're listening to Bo Kauffmann of RE/MAX performance realty. If you were enjoying the show, please subscribe so that you never miss an episode. Bell knows real estate. [00:05:27][9.7]
[00:05:33] All right, so going back a few years, I had a couple looking for a house in Old St. Vital. Came across this listing that was about a 1978 built house. [00:05:43][9.5]
[00:05:43] So here's the pop quiz member. I said earlier, there's gonna be a quiz. Well, here it is. If the house is built in the late 70s, what is it likely not to have? And if you said hardwood floors, you'd be right. Give yourself a pat on the back. [00:05:56][12.5]
[00:05:57] But we walk into this house and it's got a gorgeous big living room. It's gotta be 14 by 18 feet. And the most beautiful hardwood floors you ever saw. The center of the room is covered by this big, beautiful Oriental rug. So as we're looking through the house, it became obvious that the house is not to my client's liking for a couple of different reasons. And anyway, they told me that they're not going to be putting an offer in on it. So just for giggles, I lifted the Oriental rug and I was stunned by what I found. And I called them over and showed them what's underneath the rug. They were really surprised. But like I said, they weren't interested in the house anyway. So we moved on. So I went back to the office and bumped into an agent who was quite excited because his buyers were going to put an offer on this house, one of about six or eight at the time. [00:06:41][43.4]
[00:06:42] So I said to him, did you lift the Oriental rug. And he says, no, what are you talking about? I said, you know, that beautiful rug in the middle of the living room. Did you lift it to see what's underneath it? And he hadn't. So I told him what I found in his face kind of went white. He rushed off to the phone to tell his buyers and alert them to the fact. [00:06:58][16.1]
[00:06:58] So what happened is the current owner installed some really beautiful hardwood floors. But this Oriental rug, that's about 10 x 12 feet. Hundred and twenty square feet. It was always going to be a centerpiece of the room as far as he was concerned. So why waste by twelve hundred dollars of hardwood if you're going to cover it up anyway? So underneath the oriental rug was just plywood, plain plywood sheets. [00:07:22][23.5]
[00:07:23] So I challenge you to the next time you go into looking at a house that has a big oriental rug. I challenge you, knowing this story, not to lift that rug. I bet you can't do it. You're gonna remember the story that Bo told you. So I hope you enjoyed the story. [00:07:36][13.3]
[00:07:36] And if you're still with me, why not download my free podcasting app available for ISIS and Android devices? It's pretty simple. Just go to Winnipeg, dot tips, slash Apple or slash Android. That's Winnipeg dot t I.P.S. Slash Apple or slash android. That way you'll never miss another episode about Winnipeg. Who will astate or both? [00:07:57][21.0]
[00:08:01] You've been listening to Bo Kauffmann of RE/MAX performance realty, are you thinking of buying or selling a house or a condo in Winnipeg called WBO at 2 0 4 3 3 3 2 2 0 2? Remember, Bo knows real estate. [00:08:01][0.0]