This all comes down to the rules.....1. references....does the contractor have them??? I ALWAYS furnish all my prospective customers them....no excuses...2. insurance....again, I always furnish proof....3. Read the proposal carefully...I ALWAYS list materials down to tape used, the brand, the grit of sandpaper, the manufacturer, etc....its INEXCUSABLE to not list all of these items....I am a member of the PDCA, the Painting and Decorating Contractors of America, the foremost authority in the coatings industry and they also approve of what I listed....if you do not follow these guidelines, you will NOT get a job reflective of "professional". Look for the PDCA where any painting contractors are, if they are not a member, RUN!
Homeowners painting their home, whether it's a new coat or a new house, should ask their contractor about low-emitting paints. As the paint is applied and dries, it can release high levels of VOC's, chemicals that may be toxic to the air your family breathes (not to mention, they stink!). On top of that, these off-gassing chemicals can be absorbed by soft materials already in your home (carpet, furniture, pillow, fabric) and act as a new source to continue releasing harmful chemicals (known as "the sink effect"). There are tons of third party certified low-emitting paints on the market now for more competitive pricing and selection. You can find them listed on my organization's website at greenguard.org (those that we certify) or you can find more info from your contractor :) Happy painting!
I turn away any job when the client refuses to pay anything up front. It sends a red flag. I also charge a scheduling fee which is non-refundable. I get 33 percent when I show up and begin work. Another percentage halfway through, and the balance upon completion after client is satisfied. There needs to be skin in the game for both parties as a measure of good faith. If you are dealing with a reputable company (did your due diligence, right?) why wouldn't you want to pay something as work progresses? We do this not only because we love to paint but we require cash flow to stay in business. There is not always 'money in the bank' as you suggest. It's tough these days. The suggestion buy 'Kim' 'Never pay a contractor a deposit' is nonsensical.
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.
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.