Benefits of Hiring a Professional Painting Contractor
There are people who do all their painting themselves and say this is a task anyone can do. They forget what they went through to reach that confidence. Even if you are an experienced do-it-yourselfer, the benefits of hiring a painting professional are many.
- A professional painting contractor carries insurance to cover things that can go wrong. If you do it yourself, you deal with anything that comes up in the process.
- Professionals already have the equipment they need to do the job. That includes sprayers, protective gear, quality brushes, ladders, scaffolding, and more. They know how to use it, too. If you need that equipment, you have to buy, rent, or borrow it and figure out how it works while you are trying to paint your home.
- People who paint for a living have the experience to do their job efficiently. Their reputation is in their work, so they do their job well. They want loyal customers so they do their job in a way that encourages you to call them the next time you need something painted.
- You save time by hiring a professional painter. Instead of trying to fit prepping, painting, and cleanup into your schedule, a crew can come in and do it faster than you ever could.
- Professional painters usually get discounts so they can buy those high-quality paints. They also know which types of paint are best in specific situations, how to handle the various application techniques, and can advise you on more than the color. (They can help you with color, too.)
- A good painting job involves careful prep work so that the paint lasts. This can include scraping, sanding, drywall patching, and more. If lead paint is involved, you have a hazardous materials site with all the regulations that cover it.
- A good painting job usually involves a primer coat and at least two cover coats with appropriate dry/cure times between application. This will give you a finish that lasts a long time but it usually means you need to time those applications correctly so that the layers bond as they should. Professional painters schedule this but homeowners can find it tricky since they have other things to do.
- Once the paint is on, a professional team cleans up afterward so that you are free to enjoy your home. DIY painters aren’t free until they clean up their mess.
- A professional painting contractor should provide a warranty covering problems relating to their work. If you do it yourself, you are stuck with fixing your mistakes when you have time.
How to get started with hiring the best painting company near you
Finding a good Sarasota house painting service is a matter of doing some research and asking some important questions. Make copies of your list for each company you research and keep track of what you find. Unfortunately, there are “professional painters” who do shoddy workmanship, switch products, and look for ways to raise their bill. Your best bet for avoiding these dishonest companies is by finding out all you can before you call them and looking carefully at references.
- Better Business Bureau is a good place to start. Look for painting contractors in your area.
- Angie’s List has a search feature for state and federal contractor licensing. This is also a good site for finding reviews of local companies and more.
- Home Advisor also is highly recommended as a starting point in researching state licensing requirements.
- Go to the painting contractor’s own website and see what professional associations they are members of. Don’t forget to look up that association. Get a feel for the company by exploring their site. While an impressive website does not always mean they will do an impressive job, you can find contact information and more. Are they involved in the community? A local company that sponsors youth sports, for instance, will be around for a while. References and a portfolio of past jobs should be researched for legitimacy.
- Talk to your neighbors and see who they suggest and why.
- Talk to your local authority to find out about any permits or credentials that are required for the job.
- Check with your home owner’s insurance agent to see if there are any concerns to be aware of.
Questions to ask prospective painting services and contractors
When you narrow down your choices to two or three painting contractors, it is time to have them come look at the job and give you an estimate. This is your chance to decide if you are comfortable with them and an opportunity to see what they will be like on the job.
- Do you have proof of insurance and can I have a copy for my files? Look carefully at this. General Liability, for instance, needs to be at least $1million or more.
- Are you bonded
- Are your workers hired as employees or subcontractors? Many times, an independent contractor is not covered by the company’s policy so they need to have their own. Do they?
- What paint do you recommend for this job and why? What types of preparation and repairs need to be done and will you do it? How will you protect my property while this painting is being done?
- If you have a strong preference for a specific paint, make sure they will use it. If the painter strongly suggests using something else, make sure you understand why and agree with it.
- Estimates need to be specific. Who will get any permits required? What exactly will be done to prep the area? Who will do any needed repairs? What brand and color of paint will be used? What primer will be used? How many coats of the finish paint? When will the job start? What is the expected timeline? Will the weather affect the timeline? Will the painters work every day? Which days and how long is their day? Will they clean up after each day? Will the area be blocked off from the rest of the home to keep fumes out of living space? What type of warranty will be given for this job?
- Any questions that you come up with during your research should be on your list. Ask the same questions for each company you consult.
- Financial arrangements are an important part of your contract. Most of the time, partial payments as the job progresses and final payment after final inspection work well.
What kind of training and certifications should your painting contractor and crew have?
There is a wide range of options for becoming a professional painter. Because of this, it’s a good idea to ask the contractor you are hiring what their qualifications and certifications are. Then, look up those programs so you know what type of painter you are hiring.
- According to the Bureau of Labor and Statistics, most construction and maintenance painters are trained on the job and require no formal education.
- If lead paint is involved, the Environmental Protection Agency has a lot of lead paint rules, including certification for painters who work with it.
- The Painting Contractors Association has developed industry standards that provide a glimpse of the level of expertise that can be attained. Even if a painting contractor is not a member, these standards are worth considering.
- There is an International Union of Painters and Allied Trades that offers apprenticeships and training programs. Your painting professional may be a member.
- Some painters get their start by being in the U.S. Job Corps painting program.