I managed commercial construction projects for many years, have built and remodeled several properties, and never once have I encountered any of these scams. The tone of this article is deeply troubling. The author seems to be saying that ALL painting contractors are inherently dishonest, and that has not been my experience. The underlying advice here is sound: get it all in writing and cover as many contingencies as possible--so pointing out potential pitfalls like coat coverage is helpful. But do that in the spirit of clear communication of expectations, not with the expectation that the person you are hiring will try to cheat you at every turn. Not every contractor takes outrageous advantage of change orders; not every contractor will sneak past necessary preparation and/or repairs. Contractors of all sorts get a bad rap as it is; reinforcing a stereotype with articles written from this point of view just seems unproductive.
Lap marks are those ugly stripes caused by uneven layers of paint buildup. They occur when you roll over paint that’s already partly dry. (In warm, dry conditions, latex paint can begin to stiffen in less than a minute!) The key to avoiding lap marks is to maintain a “wet edge,” so each stroke of your roller overlaps the previous stroke before the paint can begin to dry.
I would love to explore installing this system in our home. Sadly, the nearest gas line is just down the hill from us on the cross-street. Quoted price by New England Gas to bring a gas main 300 feet up hill - $25k, and that doesn't bring it to the house, just the street in front of the house. We have municipal electricity, so the price is low currently, but we have an oil furnace for heat & hot water. Neither of these sounds like a cost-effective replacement for gas.

You may think you're home safe with a low- or zero-VOC paint, but once it's tinted with the universal colorants used in most paint stores, it could be anything but. On average, these colorants add about 150 grams of VOCs to a gallon; darker shades have more. To get around this, either settle for colors that are factory-mixed or look for paints with no-VOC tinting systems, such as Mythic, Freshaire Choice, or Yolo Colorhouse.
Interior paint has come a long way in the 32,000 years since we started slapping it up against the sides of cave walls. That primitive mix of crushed charcoal, clay, and animal marrow has evolved into a sophisticated cocktail of pigments and resins able to resist scrubbing, stains, and mildew. Today, paint ranks among the most DIY-friendly—and thrifty—home-improvement materials, easy to brush or roll on and quick to transform the look and feel of a room with just a couple of gallons.
In most cases, you'll be able to remain in your home during a painting project. However, if you are painting multiple rooms or your entire home it may make sense to stay elsewhere for the duration of the job. If your project involves lead abatement or anyone in your family is sensitive to dust or fumes, you should consider leaving the premises until the job is complete.
The cost to paint a room will vary based on the size of the room, the type of paint you select, any ceiling or trim work needed, and any repairs needed. If no repairs or other additional work is needed, painting a room with contractor-grade paint could range from $1 to $2 per square foot, including materials. Selecting a luxury paint (some cost more than $100 per gallon) will certainly increase your house painting costs. Here are some additional examples of average house painting costs, per room:

So, you’ve chosen your paint colors (hues & all) with the proper finish for each room of the house. But how do you ensure that moving through each, freshly painted, room won’t make it seem like you changed your mind a few too many times? The answer is easily answered with one word…. Well, two words… baseboards & molding. Though the dominant colors & their respective finishes may vary in each room, you should choose one color & finish for any accent pieces.
As you walk through your lighted rooms (preferably day light) see if the new coat has light spots showing the precious paint. This is call "bleeding through". This means that there's only one coat of paint or the paint was diluted or the trasition of colors were from light to dark (or the other way around) and primer was not use or the painter is inexperienced.
Not only do I agree with what you are saying; but, I will not use Angie's List for referrals again. Their "A" rated painter did some of the exact things they are now warning against; however, they are still rated "A". I sent in a review and it took eight weeks to post it. They allowed the contractor to lie about what happened as a response. I had proof and photos. Angie's List is a scam; instead ask neighbors and friends for referrals!

I would never suggest that one of my clients buy their own paint because A . They will pay an average of $20 to $30 more per gallon which could add up to $1,000 or more to a full repaint B. most times I'm in the paint store homeowners are kind of pushed to the foreground as they handle all the contractors in the store and C. Paint is heavy, takes up a lot of room needs to be left in it clean dry area and I hate to put a client to work when they are trying to hire me to do their job.
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I disagree with your criteria to hire a painter. A prompt returned call is nice but does not indicate the quality or fairness of the painter. As far as a written estimate, that should be more of a qualifier for the bid versus an evaluation criterion. I'm not sure one would have favorable results by hiring a painter on this basis. As far as the bidding process, change orders should ONLY be used if the customer requests additional scope (PMP 101). Angie's list should consider asking reviewers if/how much they were told to pay compared with the estimate. Unfortunately, there are a lot of contractors that are unethical and need to be accountable.
Sand the trim with a fine-grit sanding sponge. Sponges get into crevices where sandpaper can’t go and let you apply even pressure. Then apply the first coat of paint, let it dry at least 24 hours, lightly sand it again for a completely smooth surface, and apply the second coat. After each sanding, vacuum the trim, then wipe it down with a tack cloth to remove the dust.
Prime. Dark colors, stains (once sealed), and previously unpainted surfaces (drywall, spackle, etc.) will need a primer coat, usually white. NOTE: most paint stores & home improvement centers will now tint primer (at no charge) to match fairly close to the color of the finished coat, that way two coats of primer need not be applied. Although not all surfaces need a prime coat, skip this step at your peril! Dark colors will likely show through the first -- or even the first couple-- topcoats of paint. Sealants and unpainted surfaces like spackle patches will absorb or repel moisture in a topcoat at a different level than the areas surrounding them. Applying a good primer coat will help even out these differences. Primer equalizes a wall to a uniform surface. It's like erasing a canvas before drawing a new picture. Although some will argue the point, you generally don't need to spend a great deal on primer or buy special primer. A cheap, 5 gallon (18.9 L) bucket of plain, flat white paint will usually do the trick and cover a large area. Give your primer at least 24 hours to dry (follow its instructions) before applying a topcoat.
Carefully consider the gloss level. The shiny gloss paints are easy to clean, but will make any wall blemish stand out. The flat paints will help disguise wall blemishes, but can be difficult to clean. Generally, you'll want glossier paints where there's lots of steam or cooking (baths and kitchens) and in high-traffic areas. Flatter paints are preferred for large walls and ceilings.
While painting isn't rocket science there is a lot of job-aquired skill in paint which a professional painter/home remodeler has aquired. There are way to many "EXPERTS" in home repair now and also way too many homeowners that know everything about nothing. As a full home remodeler/repair with over 30 years in the industry most people need to hire a pro and several bids should be the norm for ANY project about to be undertaken. The low bid is hardly ever the best but then again with todays economy a lot of professionals are looking for work. Just BEWARE of any one that comes in and immediately starts talking about lead abatement and air quality as most of these type of "Professional" contractors was probably working as an engineer or a school teacher or some other type of professional last year. Always check references, ask for a list of satisfied customers going back at least ten years and find out how long the individual has been a professional home repair/skilled craftmen in the field of the project you are paying them for...

WOW! I think the guy I hired read this first and I have photos that would make your skin crawl. Bottom line: he got me for $1900.00. Every single thing he painted had to be completely redone....that's when I discovered he did NOT use the colors I picked, he actually used leftover exterior paint from his mother's house! Because I have pets he said things needed to be sealed first and I did agree to that. What I did NOT agree to was using some kind of foul smelling gray stuff ON MY HARDWOOD FLOORS! THEN he painted them BLACK, telling me that all they were good for was covering over with laminate or carpet. He also dripped and tracked paint all over my ceramic tile floors. PLUS left a wet used paint roller in my garden window and had stuff piled in front so I didn't find it until it had dried. I have no idea how much that is going to cost to repair. Then he left without finishing (thank God) but left the "leftover" paint, uncovered, in the rain. Again, hid it so I didn't immediately find it. Obviously we will be going to court but I doubt if I see a penny from him.
For interior paint I prefer the semi-gloss, provides a very subtle sheen and is super easy to clean -no flaking, chipping, etc. I've painted a lot, and found that Sherwin Williams Ovation paint has been the easiest to use, and provides the best coverage. I even painted my ceilings with it and WOW! I was done it no time at all, with perfect coverage.
Friends of ours had their house painted by Warline Painting and were really pleased with the job. When Warren came to our house he had many good ideas about what we should do. Heidi then showed up with help picking our colours. The job was done shortly thereafter and looked great. We were away for a few days and before we had a chance to contact Warren he left a message that he had checked the doors and they needed a little touch up. He had noticed little inperfections and came to fix the problem before we even knew we had them. It is great to finally find a trade company who treats your house as though it's their home.
When hiring a contractor it is always best to hire one who is personally referred to you by someone you trust. Hiring through ads or phone book is hit and miss. Check with your local paints stores, they know the good guys from the bottom feeders. Go to the stores that sell the high quality paints like Benjamin Moore(nonpareil), Pittsburg, Sherwin Williams or Glidden. Don't go the the big box stores for referrals, the people there don't know squat!
We hired Warline to refinish and paint all of our kitchen cabinets and bathroom cabinets. We found their service to be excellent -- professional, clean, unobtrusive, friendly, high-quality, and economical. We are very satisfied with the work they did, and would recommend them to anyone looking to refresh their kitchen. We are very happy with our "new" kitchen and bathrooms!
I hired Warline to repaint a room in my new home. I chose a very dark color and was scared that it might show flaws. Luckily, there was no need to be concerned, because the job was absolutely flawless!! Not only was the work done in an extremely timely manner, but the painter was very courteous, and the work is amazing! The room looks 100X better than before. Thank you Warline - I could not be happier.
Keep an eye on the new cans as they're being brought in. Make sure they look new and don't have paint in the rim of the can. If it's a five-gallon bucket, check to see whether the lid is still sealed on with the plastic strip. The only time it's acceptable to mix water in the paint is when you're using a deep or ultra deep base paint to reduce its stickiness, which is rare with new paint technology. Dark primary colors are composed almost entirely of tint that makes it very hard to work with without adding water.
Most pros don't bother cleaning brushes and rollers if they are going to use them the next day on the same job. "Latex paint dries slowly in cold temperatures," says Maceyunas. For two-day jobs, he wraps the rollers and brushes in plastic grocery bags and sticks them in the refrigerator. "Just allow the roller to return to room temperature before reusing it," he says. Roller covers are almost impossible to clean thoroughly. Most pros buy new covers for each job.
Paint colors can help define the character of your home, but choosing the right shades may seem overwhelming. To get started, collect paint chips from your local Home Depot store and try them out on your walls at home. After you've narrowed things down, get a paint sample mixed so you can test your colors on a larger scale. Your painter can also make recommendations and help you nail down the perfect colors.
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