One of the items on our "pros" list when we were looking at houses to buy was hardwood floors. In fact, it was one of the major "cons" we had to overcome when deciding whether to purchase our house, as it didn't have them.
Or so we thought.
Houses with hardwood floors usually demand more money due to the fact that almost everyone wants them. As you'll come to discover when house hunting, the listing info for a house will usually include a blurb about hardwood as a selling point, even when they're under carpet, knowing that carpet is one of the first things people usually replace. The listing for our house didn't mention it, so we assumed they were not there. Plus, we didn't see any clue of them during our multiple visits to the house before we decided to make an offer. Our plan was to rip up the carpet in the master and put in a dark wood floor from IKEA and live with the carpet in the rest of the house for the time-being.
So imagine our surprise and delight when the Verizon guy pulled back the carpet in a bedroom closet to run a cable and announced his discovery of hardwood floors! And this was literally like 2 hours after we closed on the place! That night we pulled up carpet in the corners of every room and discovered hardwood throughout.
As we extracted the carpet, padding, staples and tack strips over the next few weeks, we quickly discovered that the floors will certainly need to be refinished. As you can see from the assortment of pics below, the finish has completely worn off in certain places, there are a few stains, there are plenty of paint splatters here and there and the chemical process of cleaning the carpet over the years has left a greenish residue over the majority of the wood floor.
I did a bit of internet research to determine whether this was a job for the pros or something we could do ourselves. Although it can successfully be done as a DIY project, the consenses seems to be that this is a job better left to the pros -- both time and money-wise. So...the plan is to get a number of quotes and go from there; but we will actually hold off on getting the floors refinished until we get the ceilings painted. We'll paint the walls after the floors are done, obviously covering them very well to prevent any accidents.