Exterior House Painting – DIY or Hire a Pro

Daisy Ratnasari

When it’s time to paint the exterior of your house, there are several different ways you can go proceed. You can do it yourself, hire the neighborhood teenager, or hire a professional. If you are a proficient house painter, you may want to consider painting the outside of your house yourself. If the idea of spending every weekend up on a ladder painting your house sounds more like a curse than a blessing, you may want to consider hiring a professional painting contractor to do the job.

It’s always tempting to try to throw some work to your neighborhood teenager to help pay for college or to give him/her some extra spending money. However house painting is not an easy job, and all of the good work attempted by a hired helper may not produce the professional results that you were hoping for. Also, the liability falls on you as the homeowner if the person gets hurt while working on your house. There are parts of your home that are going to be very difficult to reach, even with a very long ladder. Don’t take this risk.

Exterior House Painting – DIY or Hire a Pro

A professional painting contractor has the tools, skills and experience to do the job right. Your time will be yours to do other things with besides climbing the ladder all weekend. A professional painting contractor is also licensed and bonded in case of any accidents or mishaps.

The best way to find a professional painting contractor is to get recommendations from other people who have had excellent results with a painting contractor. If you do not know anybody, you can check on websites, the Chamber of Commerce, your local paint retailer or check the neighborhood for signs by painting contractors in people’s yards. Homeowners often let painting contractors put their signs in their yards to advertise their services and attract new customers.

When interviewing a professional painting contractor, it is important to ask the right questions. Make sure that you get a quote in writing. Have the contractor explain the complete process to you, from preparation, grade of paint and how long the job will take. A professional will stand behind his estimate. Make sure that the contractor has done a background check and drug testing on all employees and subcontractors. Ask to see a portfolio of their work and to get some references from past customers. You must feel comfortable with the contractor, you will be working together. If the relationship doesn’t feel right, it probably isn’t.

Exterior painting can be a time consuming process, especially if the house hasn’t been painted in a long time. Old paint has to be scraped off, the area primed and sanded. A lot of this work has to be done standing on a very high ladder. After the prep has been completed, the priming and painting begins. If you have a two story house, the top of the house is the most difficult. Make sure that your painter is neat and clean, sweeping up old paint chips. If your house was built before 1978, there is a possibility that lead based paint could have been used on the house. These paint chips could contain lead, so it is important that the chips are cleaned up before a child could put one in its mouth. A professional painter will use the best quality paint, so the paint job will last for years to come. Your home is your greatest asset, so treat it well. One of the best investments you can make to your home is getting your home painted by a professional painter.

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