Estimates are one of the most important tools to help you land the next job. During our most recent webinar series on estimating, Fred Yarur of PEP (Painter’s Estimating Program) outlined 10 foundational principles to support effective estimating procedures. Use estimate tools. These enhance your ability to make informed decisions. Estimating is the process of […]

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These days, it seems like anyone with a paintbrush and a business card can call themselves a painting contractor. Homeowners who are most likely to be taken in by these unscrupulous “painters” are those who are focused on cost and cost alone. With painting, like anything else in life, you typically get what you pay for. If the painting contractor you are considering cannot answer these ten questions, proceed at your own risk. If they answer all ten satisfactorily, then you know you’ve found a great great professional contractor to work with.

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Labor costs for painting vary widely, depending on region, season, type of painting project, and experience level. On an average, you can expect to pay around $50 per hour for house painting projects. However, highly experienced painters can charge up to $70 per hour for specialty projects like murals. A 2,300 sq.ft. single-story home will require around three to five painters to paint the entire house and will take a minimum of five days to complete for a total cost of $2,400-$7,000.

I live in Fair Oaks and had my entire 2700+ s.f. home with baseboard/crown molding; ceiling and walls to be painted. A big job. We got 4 different bids with this one making the most sense. The job took a bit longer than (by only 3 days) but admittedly we had a LOT of trim work. The best part and the reason I give them 5 stars - is they showed up on time; kept the area clean and clear..and the guys / crew were the nicest people. Having people in my house for over a week was comfortable. I wasn't there on the final day for the walk through but they came back the next day and finished the minor details and even left me 4 containers (mine) clearly labeled for any touch-ups i have to do in the future (along with the larger unused portions of paint) I highly recommend.
I like that you mentioned to ask a painting contractor if they have a list of customers you can call who can give you a recommendation. Referrals can be a great way to ensure a company is reputable and has satisfied customers. I want to find the right painter to help me do the exterior of my home. I will be sure to keep these things in mind as I search, thanks.

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I had a big job in a Townhome that I had just purchased.  I wanted the whole home painted.  Loft and high ceilings and all.  Estimate was timely.  The best way to paint is when the place is empty and luckily I had that luxury.  I wanted to make sure to be painted before I move in.  They were the ONLY company who promised that timing and I believed they would deliver.  You'll see if you meet James the owner.  Honest and classy he is.  The price was fair and I liked everything I saw and heard with the company

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A do-it-yourself approach can work well for a simple painting project. More complicated, large-scale endeavors tend to require the expertise of a professional contractor. If you live in a house built before 1978, there’s an extra reason to hire a contractor: safety. Houses from that era often contain lead paint, and most contractors are specially trained to minimize the health hazards it can cause.

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Painting Cost Estimator is a job tool formulated to help the residential contractor provide an accurate quote based on actual costs and desired profit. It is important to factor in your actual fixed and variable costs such as overhead, labor, equipment, and supplies. The Job Cost Estimator calculates an accurate figure with which to present to your client on a customized quote letter. Benjamin Moore & Co., created the Job Cost Estimator in order to assist you in optimizing your business’s profitability.

Upon first impression they were amazing and gave a great quote to paint my house in Pacific Palisades.  We settled on a start date of December 3rd.  The date came and went and they did not show up.  I had to follow up with them and they said they would come the first week of January.  I have put two calls into them today and they have not returned my call.
If you’re a construction or renovation worker who specializes in painting, you might have given some thought to how you can go into business for yourself. Painting contractors not only need to be skilled in a variety of painting techniques, but also know how to bid on jobs, calculate project expenses and hire workers in order to be successful. Before you can begin working as an independent painting contractor in most states, you’ll first need to apply for licensing, carry liability insurance and file the right documents to have your business officially recognized.

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Start by thoroughly examining the outside of the house or outbuilding -- not just the exterior walls but under the eaves, around windows and doors, and along the foundation. Look for split shingles and siding, popped nails, peeling or blistering paint, mildew, and rust stains. Once you've identified the areas that need attention, roll up your sleeves and make the repairs.

More recently, professional painters are responsible for all preparation prior to painting. All scraping, sanding, wallpaper removal, caulking, drywall or wood repair, patching, stain removal, filling nail holes or any defects with plaster or putty, cleaning, taping, preparation and priming are considered to be done by the professional contracted painter.
Climate is another factor to consider. Sunlight, wind, rain and salty weather can all wear out exterior paint. Oil-based paint is durable against wind, rain and temperature changes, but sunlight tends to degrade it. Alkyd paint chalks and sheds very thin layers when it begins to wear. Latex paint is the more durable option for very sun-drenched and relatively dry climate areas. Latex paint with high vinyl content should be avoided, however. Acrylic resin is by far the more durable binder for outdoor latex paint.

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If you're going to do any part of the painting or prep work on your own, you must know that the first step in preparing a surface is washing it. Since dirt can affect the smoothness of a surface area -- and therefore paint's adhesion to it -- use soap to remove any dirt or stains. Make sure there's no soap left on the walls when you're finished; also make sure to remove any gloss with sandpaper and vacuum up the leftover dust. Home Painters Westminster Colorado
Third: The contractor buys the materials. We get them at a better rate and customers really don't know what they are getting into by being a material racer. Once again, I'm not referring to the guys that paint a bedroom or 2 a week. Tell the homeowner to go grab 50 gallons of paint, $300.00 worth of sundries and related job cost items and I'd be interested to see how it works for them....IT WILL NOT. And if were talking about people getting taken advantage of here, the paint suppliers with no relationship to a homeowner will 100% GOUGE the customer and completely take advantage of them with pricing. Contractors will pay nearly half the price and will still save the customers money marking up paint 10-15%.

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The article and comments were great information to have before deciding how to go about getting a painting job done. I think the important point is that there are several key choices (who to do the work; color, sheen, quality, of paint; how many coats; amount of prep/repairs to be done and by whom, how long the job will take, provisions for changes, how detailed the contract needs to be; advanced deposit/progress payments/final payment; final inspection, etc.) that need to be made and it requires advanced research and planning in order to become well enough informed to make the right choices. Then it requires spending sufficient time to check materials and inspect the quality of the work while it is on-going, raher than waiting to do it all at the end. President Reagan's philosophy of "Trust, but verify." applies.
It seems that private contractors are not currently being used for large-scale painting or construction jobs in Ghana. These projects are typically handled by agencies who receive contracts directly from the government. However, national regulations are constantly changing, and private contractors may be able to bid on high profile projects in the near future.

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I agree with you Richard, as a painting contractor for very many years, people are always looking to get more and more out of you. I had to give an estimate to a lady a few weeks ago who had more stuff around her home than a thrift store including heavy furniture, stuff all over the floor and junk everywhere. I knew if I accepted the job id be a furniture mover and cleaner. I also agree this article makes it seem like the contractor is out to rip off the customers. Fact is I always leave doing more work than agreed upon. It doesn't bother me since the customer is always satisfied. Just saying
In addition to getting references from your finalists, you’ll want bids. Get them from at least three different contractors, and make sure they’re all based on the same criteria. Find out what each contractor’s estimated timeframe is for the project, and whether there’s a waitlist. A good contractor should offer a warranty. Three years is fine; one year usually isn’t enough. Look at the warranty in writing, and make sure you understand any limitations or exceptions written into it.

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The crew assigned to our job was David, the foreman and two assistants. They began promptly at 8am and worked tirelessly until 5 pm everyday. They were experts in every way scraping, sanding and repairing our weathered stucco and wood framed house. At the end of each day, they would meticulously clean the areas around the house and pick up any debris.
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Some previous customers may blame the contractor for problems that resulted from adverse weather conditions — something no one could control. Negative feedback can be important to consider, and repeated horror stories are a sign to stay away, but some complaints must be taken with a grain of salt. This is especially true if you visit online guides like Yelp, where disgruntled customers can anonymously rip a company to shreds, with or without cause.
I turn away any job when the client refuses to pay anything up front. It sends a red flag. I also charge a scheduling fee which is non-refundable. I get 33 percent when I show up and begin work. Another percentage halfway through, and the balance upon completion after client is satisfied. There needs to be skin in the game for both parties as a measure of good faith. If you are dealing with a reputable company (did your due diligence, right?) why wouldn't you want to pay something as work progresses? We do this not only because we love to paint but we require cash flow to stay in business. There is not always 'money in the bank' as you suggest. It's tough these days. The suggestion buy 'Kim' 'Never pay a contractor a deposit' is nonsensical.
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