Sunday, April 13, 2008

Questions to Ask Before You Repaint Your House

Painting your home is the most inexpensive way to get a totally new look with the least investment. Nonetheless, it is still an investment. Hiring a painting contractor may cost several thousand dollars. Painting your home yourself may cost close to one or two thousand dollars depending on the size of your project. Asking yourself a few questions in the early stages of planning your project will save you time and trouble.
  • How long do I expect to stay in my home?
    • If you're only in the home for a year or two, then expect to resell or rent, keep your color scheme a little on the impersonal side with personal accents. Ignore this advice if you don't care about spending more money on a repaint within the year.
    • If you're planning on living in a place more than 2 years, be creative. There are no guarantees in life, so choose what you love so you can live in a home surrounded by choices that you love. Be as wild as you want to be. When the time comes to sell, you can include funds for a repaint if you think it would motivate a buyer. Many buyers will re-paint anyway, regardless of the colors you choose.
  • Will I (or we) do all of the painting? Some of it? None of it?
    • Painting Yourself: Take some time to review application tips. Paint companies are continually refining their products. Some application methods are better than others, depending upon the condition of your walls. Ask your paint store salesperson for up-to-date tips. You'll also find tips on pamphlets in the paint store or on the paint brands website. For even more help, Google house painting tips.
    • Hiring a Painter: The best choice is a professional painting contractor that likes doing owner occupied repaints. This is an important thing to know. Some professionals are geared more towards commercial jobs that don't require a personal touch. Ask to see pictures of other jobs and follow up with their references.
    • You can hire a painter for the "hard" parts of the job (high areas, trims) and do the easier parts yourself. If you like that idea, be honest and upfront with your painter so that he/she can bid the job accurately.
    • Ask the painting contractor for a bid that separates paint/product cost from labor. That way, you can consider the financial cost of the paint quality separate from the labor cost. There are different quality levels and prices of paint. Don't get a substitute for the brand and level of quality house paint you really want.
  • Quality Counts! A high quality paint has more solids and higher quality pigments. The result is paint that is easier to use, requires fewer coats (less labor), cleans easily (depends on the finish), lasts longer and resists fading and wear. Buy the best quality paint you can afford.
Read more of my color consulting articles on my website.

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