Evaluating Exterior House Painting Professionals
Is your home’s exterior ready for a new coat of paint? Painting your house is a smart investment that can increase your home value, improve its’ curb appeal, and protect it against the elements. Unfortunately, the most stressful part of the process is often choosing a painting contractor. So, we’ve put together this guide for you with everything you need to know about evaluating exterior home painting professions.
Step 1 – Collect Recommendations
Ask your friends, family, and neighbors if they recommend any exterior painters. Then, check out the work that the painters did on their homes. If the quality lives up to your expectations, call their contractor to get a quote.
If you don’t know anyone nearby, read reviews online for local painting professionals. Consumer Reports recommends calling at least three painting contractors to set up an appointment for an estimate.
Step 2 – Meet the Painter
A professional painting contractor will need to visit your home to give you an accurate cost estimate. It is a serious red flag when a painting contractor quickly jumps to a cost without walking around your entire house and looking it over well.
Take the time to meet with them and show them around your property when they stop by for an estimate. This will allow you to see if they are paying close attention. It will also let you ask important questions such as:
- How many members are on your crew, and what is their experience level?
- How many coats of paint do you apply?
- Will you power wash and prep the exterior before applying paint?
- Do you offer a guarantee or warranty?
Step 3 – Set Clear Expectations
Clearly communicate what you expect with the painting contract. Before meeting with them, determine what level of prep and imperfections are acceptable to you. Then, when you discuss the project, let them know your expectations. Be clear about any special requests. For example, if you want the surface completely free of unevenness from past paint jobs, let them know and be prepared to pay extra for the additional labor this will require.
Step 4 – Collect Estimates
Ask for a written estimate that breaks down labor, materials, primer, and paint costs. It should also include the amount of surface preparation they plan to do and the brand and model of the materials. Getting estimates in writing will make it easier to compare and contrast offers.
Step 5 – Evaluate Their Work
As you evaluate their estimates, take into consideration the quality of their past work. It’s a great idea to drive by homes they have worked on recently and a few years ago to see how those jobs turned out. It is often tempting to choose the contractor with the lowest price, but you may not get the best value for your money. Painting your home’s exterior is a significant investment. If you go with the cheapest contractor, you may end up needing to hire another painting contractor to redo the job in two years instead of five to seven. Viewing their past work can help you assess the value of their work.
Step 6 – Get a Contract
Once you have picked a painting contractor, ask them to draw up a contract for you. Along with the information from the estimate, it should include essential business information:
- Contactor’s name
- Office Address
- Cell phone numbers to contact
- Business license number
In addition, be sure to get a copy of the painter’s liability and workers’ compensation insurance certificates. A professional painting operation will be fully insured, so you don’t have to worry about being on the hook if a crew member is injured on the job at your home.
Step 6 – Request a Guarantee
If their contract doesn’t include a guarantee for their work, ask for one. Most professional painters offer a risk-free guarantee that they will correct any work you aren’t happy with for no extra charge. In addition, they provide a two-year warranty to fix any peeling, flaking, chipping, blistering, or severely fading within the first two years after they completed the job.
If they don’t offer either, they might mention that the paint comes with a warranty. While that is true, keep in mind that the paint warranty doesn’t include labor costs which is the most expensive aspect. Therefore, if a contractor refuses to offer a guarantee and two-year warranty, it’s a wise idea to choose a different painting contractor.
High-quality painters want you to be happy with their work. We don’t cut corners because ensuring your exterior paint looks great and lasts for years is our top priority. We want to build a long-term relationship with you and earn your recommendation. If you are looking for a painting professional you can trust in central Connecticut, check out Franklin Painting’s reviews and get an estimate!