If the exterior of your home could use a fresh coat of paint - or two - start the process by getting an estimate that includes any and all work required for a high-quality, long-lasting paint job. Use the following checklist to ensure your estimate includes everything it should.
Power washing the exterior of your home with an environmentally safe detergent should be included in the painting estimate, as should hand washing of any areas a power washer could damage. Proper cleaning methods remove dirt, chalk and chemicals from the surface of your home, all of which can prevent fresh paint from adhering to the exterior of your home. These cleaning methods also remove mildew spores that destroy even the freshest of paint jobs. If your home's exterior was recently power washed, this step might prove unnecessary; discuss the issue with your painting contractor as part of the estimate process.
Do not simply accept "Prep" as a line item in the painting estimate. Have your contractor detail in writing the prep work to be done. For example wood requires that loose or peeling paint be thoroughly removed and any bare wood primed before the finish coat is applied. Gaps should be filled with caulk before a penetrating primer gets applied. And before any of the prep work begins, the landscape must be protected. All of these steps should be included in the estimate, as should the product name of the primer to be used.
The painting estimate also should stipulate that all non-painted areas be covered and that cleanup be complete after the work is done. Request that your painting contractor also detail how the paint will be applied and in how many coats. Ask how the contractor handles weather conditions such as rain. The best painters suspend work when a 50 percent or more chance of rain exists. Request that the brand of paint be noted in the estimate and ask your contractor for recommendations on which paint will work best on your home.
If your painting contractor ranks as one of the best in the area, he will include a final inspection in the estimate without you having to ask. It will include a complete and thorough walk-around during which areas requiring touchup will be determined and additional cleanup tasks will be noted. When you select ProTect Painters, you also will receive a final walk-around at the completion of the job.
If the estimate you receive includes all of the above, you can expect a high-quality, long-lasting paint job. If sticker shock sets in upon seeing the final cost, keep the following in mind: An exterior paint job should not be viewed as one-time cost but instead as an annual investment. A high-quality paint job can last more than 10 years, while a low-quality one could require redoing in as little as three. By no means should you consider tackling this work yourself, unless you work as a professional painter and can carve time out of your busy schedule to paint your own home's exterior.
One final estimate issue to keep in mind: Discuss the payment schedule up front and put it in writing. It's common for professional painters to receive a deposit when the contract is signed and progress payments during the job.
This post is a part of our series on Exterior Painting tips.
Specializing in exterior and interior painting, on residential and commercial projects, ProTect Painters provides local businesses and homeowners across the country with highly-skilled, trustworthy, and fully insured and licensed painting professionals who provide superior craftsmanship. Utilizing a myriad of paint options and finishes, combined with flawless customer service, ProTect Painters guarantees a stress-free home improvement experience for its customers.