It is true that wood as a flooring material has come back in style, yet many older homes were built that way simply because it was the least expensive option at the time. The new owners could be envisioning beautiful oak boards that have been covered for centuries, but the reality could be more than they had hoped. There could be plenty of protection for the original flooring that they will need to remove before finding what they seek.
Older homes have usually been renovated a few times, so it is not unusual to find the floors have been covered in several layers. Modern carpeting may be in nearly every room, or linoleum could be the current layer. There could be much more before the original flooring is exposed.
Carpeting is nearly always laid down over padding, and this is yet one more layer that may need excavation. Floors with half a century of carpeting could also have a thick layer of old dirt, plaster, and even some paint that dripped when walls or ceiling were coated in it right before the first carpet was laid down. It can be a disturbing discovery.
Linoleum flooring might seem a better choice for those who would rather avoid going through layers to find the original floors, but it is not always the easy renovation imagined. There could be several layers of linoleum, tiling, and there could even be a layer of paint on the original wood floors before their beauty can be revealed.