Have you ever just looked at your house and were just disappointed in how it looks?
But don’t fret just yet; there is an easy solution that will spruce up your house, and you don’t even have to buy a new house.
If you repaint the outside of your house, it will change the entire feel of your home. A new paint job will make your house feel new again and give it a new life.
So, if you want to build up some social reputation points with your neighbors or are looking to increase the value of your house, a nice paint job will be your best bet.
But, how do you even begin this journey?
Well, finding a well-reputed house painter or a contractor should be your very first concern.
We will, therefore, be looking at what even is a painting contractor, how to find the best one for your house, and how to get the best price out of them.
What Does a Painting Contractor Do?
Before we begin hiring your neighbor that says he can paint your house for cheap, we should talk about what a professional painting contractor is.
A painting contractor is a business ranging from a single worker to a team of thirty that will paint your house.
These businesses tend to be local operations as there aren’t many national contractors out there. They also will do any work associated with painting such as plaster repair, drywall work, and wallpapering, but in general, they tend to focus on painting.
That said, if you are still tempted to hire a cheap neighborhood painter (rather than a professional painting contractor), it’s good to think once again.
But how do you find the painting contractor that will best fit you and your house…
How to Find a Great House Painter? (7 Tips for You)
Now you could go and find the cheapest painting contractor out there, however, this could backfire on you immensely.
A bad paint job will probably look even worse than what your house already has, meaning you will have to pay someone to redo the paint job.
Face the fact – if you want something done right the first time, you have to pay the premium price.
So, how do you find a house painter that will do a good job the first time and will transform your shack into a mansion?
Let’s check out…
1. Check with a Good House Painter Referral
The best painter you will ever find is one that gets recommended to you.
Ask any friends or family if they have had any good experiences with any of the local painters. There is a solid chance that if your family suggests a painter to you, they will do a good job.
Even better, you can visit their house and look for yourself if you like the work that you see, you may pursue that painter.
2. Check the Internet for Different Options
The next logical step if you don’t have any personal connections to any painter is to go online and try to find a local painter.
You can just go on google and type in house painter, and you will find some results for your area instantly. If you want to dig a little deeper, you can go to some specific websites.
You may find something on Facebook, but websites like Angie’s List, Houzz, Yelp, and many more will give you a more reputable list of painters.
3. Do a Walk Around in Your Neighborhood
Similarly, to the first way, you can literally just walk around your neighborhood.
Especially if a company is working as you passed, you can easily find out their name and how to contact you. Then you can come back when they are finished and determine if you like the work they did.
You can of course look up the company online to double-check its credibility.
4. See if Local Paint Stores can Get Good Contractors for your Job
You can visit a local paint store to discuss with the employees to find which of the local painting companies are good.
The paint shop will supply the painters with paint, so they know who has a lot of business. The employees will help you by pointing you in the right direction.
5. Compare the Estimates Given by Different Painters to Choose Whom to Hire
So, by now, you should have a few leads on who to hire.
But again, before you just hire the first one, you should compare and contact the companies. Ask for the written estimates from each of the companies so you can compare.
Remember, getting a written estimate is crucial if you do not want to get ripped off later. In the estimate, you should look through all the details such as how many layers of paint they will do and how long it will take to complete.
These are important factors that may push or pull in any way, so take your time to decide what will be best for you.
6. Walkthrough Your Area to Note Any Existing Damages before Painting
This is just for your personal safety, as you don’t want the contractors to accidentally break anything.
So, you should go around your house and check out if there are any damages before they arrive. Note if your walls are chipped, or if your furniture is broken.
Just in case an accident happens, and something breaks, you can prove to them that they are at fault. And in that case, even their insurance company can offer the repair cost if needed.
Also, be a nice person and clean up your house so the painting contractor can come in and do their job efficiently. It helps out everyone if you clean before they arrive.
7. Consider Paying 10% of the Job Cost while Signing the Work Contract
After you agree on a contract with the choice of your painters, it is customary to pay them a certain percentage at the beginning of their work. This is to help them with supply costs, and it tells them that you are serious about paying them the entire amount in the end.
We recommend you to not pay too much (or more than 10% of the total job cost) as a down payment in the beginning.
Also, you can pay them as they go. If the job is a particularly large job, it would make sense to pay them half of the price when they complete half the job. But you will have to work this out with the company.
Benefits of Hiring a Professional
While you can save money by painting yourself, there are good reasons why hiring a professional painter is a better idea.
While you may pay more at first, you may save considerably in the long run.[wp-svg-icons icon=”checkmark-circle” wrap=”i”] Speedy
A professional house painter does the job faster compared to someone who does not paint that often. This is because they carry their own supplies, can get what they need in terms of paint quickly, and work faster in general while not sacrificing quality.
Plus, you can go about your business while they take care of painting your home.[wp-svg-icons icon=”checkmark-circle” wrap=”i”] Insured
Believe me, hiring a cheap painter without insurance can be perilous.
On the other hand, a professional painter not only works hard for you, but they are also covered by insurance to ensure that if their work causes any damage to your home, it is covered.
Be sure before you hire any professional painter or painting company that they are licensed and insured – particularly when you are planning something dangerous like lead paint removal.[wp-svg-icons icon=”checkmark-circle” wrap=”i”] Well Equipped
For those who are painting for the first time, you will need to gather your equipment and supplies. Invariably, you will either forget something important or perhaps use the wrong paint.
A professional painter carries everything needed plus knows what type of paint works best for your home. And because they are properly equipped, they can get the job done quickly.[wp-svg-icons icon=”checkmark-circle” wrap=”i”] Efficient at Work
It is the job of a professional house painter to do high-quality work. Otherwise, they would not be in the profession.
You can expect evenly painted walls, no drips on the carpet or baseboards, and they will use the right paint that lasts a long time. If you do not paint that often, then you may not get the same results.
In other words, they not only paint quickly, but they are thorough with the job that they do in a shorter amount of time. This is because they have several jobs lined up, which means they have to do good work in a relatively short period.
What may take you several hours, professionals can accomplish in far less time.[wp-svg-icons icon=”checkmark-circle” wrap=”i”] Can Provide Exceptional Advice
It’s the little things about a finished paint job that make it stand out.
A professional is trained to perfect the details which result in a beautifully painted wall, ceiling, or other parts of your home.
An experienced painter also will listen to what you want and not only set out to accomplish that task, but they will also offer suggestions that make what you want even better. They know the paints, techniques, and other information that you may not have considered.
In the end, you save time, money, and effort, all while getting the results you want when hiring a professional painter or painting company.
What to Ask a Painting Contractor?
Before you sign any contract with any painter, you should ask them a few questions so you know what you are getting.
Here’s a simple list you can ask your prospective painting contractor, so you know you are getting a good worker.
Q. Is the estimate free?
This is obviously the first question you should ask your contractor before anything gets done.
If the contractor doesn’t offer free estimates, that is fine, but you shouldn’t pay too much for an estimate. An estimate should help you pick a business you want to go with.
Q. Will you help pick me a paint?
You may not be an interior designer like the ones you see on television, so you may not know what looks good.
Lucky for you, these professional painting businesses and contractors spend all day inside houses painting, so they would know what will look good.
They are also knowledgeable about paints to help you choose the best brands, colors, or grades. They are experts in this field and should be honest with you as they gain nothing by lying.
Q. Will you fix any wall problems?
Some of these businesses are fully capable of fixing any problems in your walls, such as damaged soffits, cracked trims, dents, or holes, but not all of them do so.
Some businesses take the easy way out and just paint over the problems to save their time and money.
But this will negatively affect the end results you will be getting and can even add to final costs in many cases. You should try to find a business that is honest with you and will do what is best for you and your home without skipping the important steps.
Q. Will you give me updates on the progress?
Painting can be a very time-consuming activity that could take multiple days. And some people don’t feel comfortable with workers inside the house without supervision.
So, if you want to be home when they work, it is reasonable to ask what times they will be working. Also, they should tell you how close they are to be done if they are considerate painters.
Q. Will you charge per hour for labor or per project?
It’s good to note that some of these professional house painters would be willing to get paid on an hourly basis for labor. At the same time, there are many who would like to fix a price based on a complete project.
When hiring the best painter for your painting job, it’s good to confirm how they will be charging so that you do not face any hassle afterward.
With all those questions in mind, house painters – if professional – will make all things clear for you.
They should be hired only if they are really willing to get the project and if they answer all your questions.
If you get all the satisfactory answers to your above questions, you may proceed with a few more like these:
- How many coats of primer, paint, or stain will you lay down?
- What kind (and what quality brand) of primer and paint you will be using?
- Is the cost of paint, primers, and other paint supplies included in the estimate?
- How long will it take to complete the entire job, and do I need to vacate the house during the work?
- Will you use the masking tapes all around the trims (and other non-paintable areas), or will you use the cut-in method?
How Much Will it Cost to Hire a Contractor?
Although we talked through this entire article about how great a repaint of your house is, you should know that the price of this project can be dramatic.
How much it costs to hire a professional painter can vary based on size, the business, the paint, and dozens of different factors.
Most painting contractors will have a formula you can use to figure out their rates.
These formulas are based on the square footage of the walls and ceilings and may have some other factors, such as preparation time and other flat costs.
As a rough estimation, we can tell you that an interior paint job for a whole house can be nearly $10,000 or even more.
|Painter Cost Per Day||$200 to $500|
|Painter Cost Per Hour||$20 to $50|
|Painter Cost Per Square Foot||$2 to $4|
Please note that while residential painters may consider getting paid in terms of cost per project (that may go from anywhere $100 to $5,000 for the project), commercial painting companies will most of the time work by getting paid in terms of cost per square foot due to obvious reasons.
Although there is not much difference between commercial and residential paint projects, the costs may go much higher if it’s a kind of multi-level commercial building or a complex.
The best thing to do is just to ask multiple contractors what their quote is for your house and how much you will need to pay them per hour.
You will be able to figure out what is a fair price based on the various quotes.
We recommend you get at least three quotes so you know you are not being scammed.
It’s best if you have the contractor actually come to your apartment (or an exact painting location) so you can ask questions and talk about the quote along with your actual expectations.
Make sure, that you schedule your meeting with all the contractors within a week period.
This will ensure that the contractor you choose is not hired by others and there are no price differences in the paint supplies during that specific time range.
If you do this for all of the contractors, you will be in a good place.
How to Deal with a Bad Painter?
For now, you already know what to ask your painter while hiring them for a job.
But accidents happen! You cannot completely avoid them.
A BAD painter can leave hazardous cans of paint on your property without getting them disposed of properly. They may also get the paint splatter all over your belongings (and on floors, windows, or doors) without caring to clean them properly.
Worse, they can be a sloppy worker who is always late during their working hours.
Worry not! Just in case the painter you hired turns out to be the wrong choice – there are options for you.
1- Communicate Politely to Get the Problems Fixed
Communicating politely and being calm is key to fixing various kinds of issues (no matter personal or professional).
If you have a hard time dealing with your bad contractor/painter, it’s important that you start by staying friendly and polite.
You should first try talking to him about your concerns and ways how he can get them fixed.
If the contractor isn’t communicating well with you, you can try calling the highest person (like a manager) or authority of the company who is in charge of your work.
You should explain to them the problems you are facing with your painter and ask about their plans on how they will be addressing them.
In case the highest authority person is not available, OR you do not find any solutions to your problems by talking politely, it’s time to take the initiative and put some extra pressure.
2- Let Them Know That You Are Posting A Review about Their Service Online
No matter how experienced a painter or a contractor company is, they all love to maintain their reputation.
If you are continuously getting unsatisfied responses and disastrous work quality, let them know that you are using various home improvement websites and are going to post a detailed NEGATIVE review about their bad services on them.
Specifically mention the names of the sites like:
- Angie’s List
- Home Advisor
- Google Places
Most probably, they will not love to get their business affected by getting these negative reviews from the customers. And by putting some pressure in this way, you can change the way how your painter deals with you.
They will now know that you are not going to keep quiet and can damage their business reputation significantly.
So, the only option they will have is to deliver the best quality service you desire to get.
On the other hand, if you find that the problems you face are still not getting fixed, you are open to posting a negative review about the specific painting company you hired.
Make sure you do not post anything offensive or false. Just be specific about the services you hired and the quality you received in detail.
How to Avoid Dealing with the Wrong Painting Company?
Having all the above information in mind, you will most probably be looking forward to some tips on how you can actually avoid getting into a regrettable situation.
Well, it all depends on how much homework you do before hiring a painter for your project.
To put it simply, there are lots of ways by which you can check the professionalism of the house painter you are hiring. Some of the things you need to check are:
1- Check online reviews:
Go through the detailed online reviews about the company. Check whether there are people (in large numbers) who have experienced bad quality service from the specific company before.
You will come to know about them easily while reading the testimonials written by real consumers out there like you. If there is a large percentage of negative reviews, it’s good to avoid such a painting company.
2- Make sure they are insured and licensed:
Before you hire a painting company or a contractor, ask whether their business is licensed or not.
If they are licensed to perform house painting work (interior or exterior), ask with whom they are. In most cases, if they are licensed, they should not be hesitant to tell the truth.
And if you want, you can then get in contact with a licensing agency to confirm the truth.
In a similar way, ask about their insurance company. You may ask for a copy of the Insurance Certificate that is issued to the company from the insurance company.
And confirm what the coverage includes:
- General liability: to protect the damage to your property during the work process
- Workers’ compensation: to protect the employee (or a painter) working for your project
In addition to proper license and insurance, you can also find out whether the business of the painting company is bonded via a third party.
This may prove beneficial in case you experience problems such as dishonesty, employee theft, or non-fulfillment of the paint job according to the working contract.
3- Check how professional the painting company is:
True professionals always show signs of how professional they are at their work.
Most of the time, they have an official website in addition to a physical office or a headquarter that can be visited.
By visiting their official website, you may know whether they use specific work uniforms, letterheads with logos, promises about their punctuality, and so on.
You can also ask about whether they will be using any specific accessories like work pants, work boots, shoe covers, etc.
4- Check the detailed estimate and avoid hefty deposits:
When you have checked carefully and found your painter has already passed all the above tests, talk to him about the detailed estimate.
This should include the breakdowns of the house painting procedures, the painting materials they use, and the total costs involved (approximate).
Make sure that you avoid any such company that demands to have large deposits in advance. No matter what the case is, you are not obliged to pay more than 50% of the total estimation before the work.
The bottom line,
Hiring a good home painter can be a great relief rather than completing the entire project on your own.
However, as the competition is growing, various companies tend to make promises that they cannot actually afford to fulfill.
It’s always good to do your homework right and deal with a professional painting contractor or a company that can keep up its promises.
As they say – what you pay is what you get!
It’s best to communicate politely, be calm and pay the satisfactory sum of money that your painter deserves for his working hours and labor is done, then to repent later. This way, they can be more helpful and thoroughly clean the messes in your work area (or your entire home) before leaving.
Hopefully, you are prepared after reading this article, so go out and find your house painter now.