Am I neurotic? White walls

Hello Fellow Hosts, I just had my 1/1 apartment painted in pristine white and have made some other improvements to give it a more up to date “refresh”. I still meet every guest and cringe when I see a guest carrying large suitcases. The apartment has its own washer and dryer, and I cannot understand the need to travel with gigantic luggage (large enough to carry a body). Other than gently warning each guest to stay away from the walls, do you have any ideas how to get guests to avoid damaging the walls? I’ve had guests take chunks of drywall with their heavy luggage. Please help me minimize my angst. Thank you.

Do you have plaster or drywall? We have plaster painted with Benjamin Moore Dove White walls. A soft white.

Toothpaste with a white close to your paint makes a great quick touch up. If it’s just dirt, sauce or food bits, or oils from dogs resting against a wall, I find the best cleaner by far is Clorox or Lysol disinfecting wipes.

Your apartment must have tight corners because we never have wall dings from luggage in our cottage. Perhaps you have one too many occasional tables or end tables?

This is why wainscotting is used.

"What is the purpose of wainscoting?

A combination of decorative boards or panels and moldings that extend partway up a wall’s face, wainscoting is a centuries-old marriage of form and style. Dating to the 1300s, the Dutch used it to shield the bottom half of plaster walls from such hazards as jostled chairs, spurs on riding boots, perhaps even carelessly swung scabbards.

Wainscoting still guards our walls, but today it’s from dirt-caked gardening shoes in mudrooms, olive-oil fingerprints in kitchens, and the inevitable scuffs in the close quarters along hallways and stairways."


@SleepingCoyote my apartment is about 700 sq ft and while it’s not spartan, it does not have extra tables or any unnecessary furnishings. I don’t know if it’s plaster and I don’t know the brand of the paint but it’s quite amazing how much damage the large suitcases cause. I set a limit of 10 days minimum, while at times I reduce it to 6-7 days to cover any gaps, so people tend to travel with large suitcases. But with a washer and dryer, there is no reason why people need to travel with so much stuff as if they need suitcases large enough to carry dead bodies…

Not a bad idea; maybe in my next round of improvements I will need to add wainscoting to reduce the suitcase damage. However, where I live, any little remodel is a source of aggravation as the workers don’t show up, etc.


what do you mean, please?

You can’t change the luggage people bring, so I don’t understand why you are even concentrating on this. And you don’t know why they bring large luggage- I just took my annual trip to Canada to visit my daughters and friends. I brought a large bag which was half full on the way up because I had things to purchase there and bring home with me- my bag was full on the return trip.

I have always used semi-gloss or satin paint because it is easy to wash marks off of. And I always keep a small jar of every color paint I have handy, so small dings can be touched up easily. You can also get quick-drying filler for any gouges, swipe it on with a palette knife and then paint over it when it’s dry.


It’s better than them leaving a dead body in your listing, no?



Magic eraser sponges are the best thing for removing marks off of walls.

If your painters didn’t leave you a touch-up pot of paint then ask them for the color chip and get a quart of it. Leave some in an airtight jar under the kitchen sink along with a disposable sponge paintbrush and a small container of spackle for easy touch-ups.

Then consider wainscotting or tile, depending on which goes best with the style of your place. If you’re actually in Miami, I bet some nice tile work would fit in nicely.


Many times a guest is bringing non-washable clothes - shoes or business attire. Especially when attending an event like a wedding, they have numerous changes of clothes as well. Gifts to deliver or space for shopping etc are also common reasons for big suitcases.


One things we offer is for guests to send boxes ahead of time if they wish. A couple of guests have taken us up on that.

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Just repainted all the walls a light green. Now, since I picked the color, I will always be able to get touch up paint. Also light grazes won’t be so noticeable. The wall most likely to be bunged up is the wall in the guest room where the luggage rack is normally set up.

Make sure you write down the formula, not just the brand and color name. Paint companies change the name of paint colors from time to time.

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And they all use the same names too! e.g, Valspar’s Bistro White is not the same as Sherwin William’s Bistro White.

@MissMiami If they have the chip, it will have all the information you need but if they don’t, then a can or just the lid with the printout will do.

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If you are using paint with a flat finish, try eggshell finish instead. It’s more durable and easier to wash, but still hides the imperfections in the wall.

For times when the paint is actually damaged, do what @JJD said, keep touch-up paint, ready-to-use mud/spackle/plaster, putty knife and disposable sponge brushes or mini rollers so you can do touchups quick and easy. After you’ve done it a couple times, you’ll find that it only takes a few minutes.


I have a little book where I write down the paint formulas. Learned that the hard way. Too many times the lid or can has gotten covered in paint so the label can no longer be read. :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

One of the paint stores I frequent here has looseleaf binders where they actually have a page for each customer and make note of the paint colors they purchased. They have looked up colors I bought years ago and had no formula or name for.


+1 on magic erasers, but go find the generic ones, “melamine sponges” on Amazon. Arm and Hammer’s trademarked ones are like 10x more costly per sponge, but are the same material.

We have flat white walls too. The scuffs are a total PITA, but we just buff them out with the melamine sponges and touch up with paint when needed. Once in a while we have to spackle and paint gouges. People are careless about luggage handling.

The gouges we can’t understand are the ones on the wall three feet above the built-in couch?

Costs of doing business.


The wainscoting is a great idea but a a pretty good project. A chair rail might offer some of the same protection from the tall suitcases. You could also take the suggestion of a light neutral color just on the bottom to hide the occasional scrape. People have many reasons for large suitcases tjat can be hard to maneuver.

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The problem I have with this is that the sheen changes after buffing which almost makes it more noticeable than doing nothing.

Keep in mind that the paint in the can will lose moisture to the air space in the can. The paint will then dry to a little different color, usually darker or more vibrant. That’s because you apply more pigment to the same area when the paint has already started to dry. I’ve added a little water to touch up paint to help it match better.


I add a very thin layer of water on top of water-base paint (or thinner in the case of oil-base) before closing up the can, which works well against the drying factor. Also make sure the rim is clean of paint so you can tamp the lid down fully and you can store the paint can upside down.