So you're planning to paint your house. The question is do you do it yourself, or do you hire a professional house painter to do the job for you?
Painting is essentially one of the easiest DIY jobs that you can do at home. But it is also a job that is incredibly easy to make a mess of ... literally. So before you decide to attack the task of house painting yourself, take stock and make sure you are up to the job.
What you need to know to get a paint job right
You don't need a university education to paint your house, even though in some European countries you can study for a master painter's certification. But the truth is you do need some basic information along with some quite technical knowledge to ensure that you get it right.
First of all you need to know about the different types of paint that are available for painting our homes, both inside and outside. You need to know which of these may be used on different surfaces. What's good for wood isn't necessarily good for a plastered wall. You also need to know how to prepare the surface you are going to paint. While the basic preparation process is the same in terms of stripping and cleaning surfaces, base coats and primers are made for specific purposes. If you use a product that is not compatible with the paint you have chosen for the top coat, you're going to be in big trouble. Not only will you make a mess, but you'll be wasting the good money you have spent on paint and paint-related products.
Top ten reasons to hire a professional house painter to do the job for you
If you have the necessary knowledge, experience and energy to paint your own house, go for it. But here are ten good reasons why you might prefer to hire a professional to do the work for you.
- You don't have to take any responsibility for tedious preparation. Instead you can just make sure the person you are paying does it correctly.
- A well trained and experienced professional house painter will know exactly what products to use. All the same, check these products out to make sure you are happy with the choice.
- An experienced and capable painter will also be able to give you all the information you need to know about paint. With their guidance you will be able to choose the ideal products for your home – particularly if you want to make your own choices.
- A good professional will be well equipped. You won't have to outlay anything on ladders, drop sheets, buckets, rollers, paint brushes and so forth. Some may agree to you buying the materials to save on the contract.
- A good professional house painter will know how to prepare every type of surface correctly. It won’t matter whether he or she is painting a ceiling, walls or door and window frames…
- Professional painters are trained to take care of details you might not even consider. For example they will (or should) remove hardware like handles before they start work. It takes extra effort, but they are getting paid for this.
- If the pro painter makes a mess, it's not (or shouldn't be) your problem.
- Painting jobs usually take days and sometimes even weeks. If a professional painter is responsible for the job you won't have to clean up every day, but they will.
- If you are working with a professional interior designer, this person will liaise with your professional painter. The same applies to a project manager. You can simply check that the job is done to your satisfaction.
- If the job isn't done according to schedule and in terms of the contract, the painter will have to rectify the matter. If you do the painting, you simply can't pass the buck!
What to expect from a professional painter
Apart from producing a good paint job, you can expect the pro painters to be exceptionally well organized and knowledgeable. If you are going to pay for a professional, you can expect that person to be well equipped and able to give you all the advice you need. This includes both product and color advice.
Expect to be shown good references and ask to see examples of work the company has completed. Check what licenses the painter has and make sure the company has adequate insurance. If something goes wrong and your precious furniture is wrecked, you don't want to have to fork out to rectify the situation.
Expect the painters to show up clean and organized EVERY day. Sure they'll get a bit grubby during the work day, but a successful work site is a clean, well organized work site.
If budget is a serious issue, consider young, new professionals who are starting out. But still get some sort of reference and perhaps start with one room or section of the house as a trial. While you may be concerned in terms of trustworthiness, it's a two-way street. After all, if they don't do the job properly and professionally, you're not going to pay! If they do, you will.
Some reputable Canadian painters
While we cannot take responsibility for any type of recommendation, here are some professional painters you might like to check out.
- The Canadian Painters, Great Painting Services - www.thecanadianpainters.com
- Painters.ca - www.painters.ca
- Commercial and Industrial Painting Contractors (Oakville) - www.propainters.ca
- Kara Painting (Toronto) - www.karapainting.ca
- Levsha Pro Painting and Home Renovations (Toronto) - www.levshapaintingandrenovations.com
- New Beginnings (Toronto) - www.renaissancepainters.ca
- Painting Canada Inc. (Hamilton) - www.goldbook.ca/hamilton-on/painting-contractors/painting-canada
- Renaissance Painters (greater Toronto area) - www.renaissancepainters.ca
Just remember that when you approach professional painters, you can expect a professional service. And if you find a good, professional painter or painting company, tell your friends. There is, after all, nothing that is better than word of mouth – and this is one of the best reasons to hire a professional house painter you know you will be able to trust.