Removing wallpaper is a process you learn on the job, and the tools and materials you need are inexpensive. It's just tedious, messy and time consuming, which is what we call "grunt work," the ideal task for a wannabe do-it-yourselfer because it requires no skills or previous experience.
A contractor will charge $366 to remove two layers of wallpaper from the walls of a 10-by-12-foot room, but you can do the work for $75 and save a whopping 80 percent for your effort. Your cost covers a gallon of gel-type remover, a scoring tool, a wallpaper scraper, masking tape and plastic drop cloths. You'll also need a paint roller and pan.
The room becomes a work zone because you have to remove everything from the walls, move the furniture away from the walls and protect the floors with plastic drop cloths taped to the baseboard. To begin, roll a scoring tool over a wall to attack the glue bonding the wallpaper to it. The tool makes tiny holes in the paper so you can apply the gel remover to break down the old glue and loosen the paper. Follow the manufacturer's direction for applying the remover. We like to use a paint roller to apply it in one section of a wall, and then wait before scraping off the wallpaper.
When all the paper is removed, wash the walls to remove any glue and residue that remains. Then wrap up the scraps in the plastic drop cloth, and the job is done.
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Pro Cost -- DIY Cost -- Pro time -- DIY Time -- DIY Savings -- Percent Saved
$366 -- $75 -- 10.7 -- 14 -- $291 -- 80 Percent