Are you planning on painting the exterior of your home or a building on your property? Homeowners often gasp when they are given a painting estimate for thousands of dollars from a professional painting contractor. It’s not always a case of your professional painter being priced too high, sometimes it’s a case of the customer not fully understanding what’s actually involved on the part of the painter to complete the project.
To make the problem worse, there are many painters masquerading as professionals, that really shouldn’t be and their estimates are thankfully really easy to spot, we’ll explain how below.
Professional Painters Use Contracts and Thorough Written Work Orders
Have you ever received a bid for a painting project scratched out onto a piece of paper? Was the scope of work and materials list pretty vague? Were they vague about the methods they will be using to paint your structure? Professional Painters don’t do this. When a professional painter provides you with his/her painting estimate it will probably be on company letterhead, and more than one page. You’ll receive a thorough description of the work involved, the materials being used and any and all requests or special considerations you’ve asked for in writing.
Having a written contract and description of the work being performed protects both parties. It’s not cheap however to have proper paperwork drafted by a legal professional. If your painting estimate looks professional, it’s a good first indication that the painter behind it might be professional too. If you received your estimate on a napkin, with a handwritten quote and misspelled words, it might be a clue to keep looking.
Professional Painters Are Insured
Proper insurance both for employees and the projects a painter works on are very expensive business expenses we must pay as professionals. You’d think this would be obvious but make sure the painting estimate you’ve receive has come from an insured painter. Believe it or not, many painters have none. What if the painter accidentally damages your neighbors property with some paint overspray? Do you think your unprofessional fly by night painter will be equipped to handle that situation financially? It’s very unlikely and you just might never hear from the again.
Your estimate from a professional painter will probably mention the fact they are licensed and insured to do business in your area.
Professional Painters Use High Quality Products
There are many different grades of exterior paint from many more different paint manufacturers. They are not all created equal. This is why professional painters work with proven brands from paint manufacturers that have a solid reputation and stay on the cutting edge of painting technology. We’ll tell you exactly what brands and specific paints we’re using for your project. Some contractors will tell you that you’re getting high grade paint but is it really what’s going on your walls? A professional painting contractor will be able to prove it.
When it comes to exteriors there is are special considerations that must be taken depending on the surfaces being painted, their cleanliness or age and the environment the surface will be exposed too. Choosing the right coatings for your building exterior is best left to the professionals.
Is Your Project Difficult To Access?
There is a lot to be said for ease of access to a project and the work-space surrounding it. If the project is easy to access it makes our job easier. If the property or project is difficult to get our equipment in and out or we need to take extra time preparing the area for our presence than it can be more costly. This is especially so with exterior painting where the environment and other conditions can also come into play.
What Type Of Surfaces Are We Painting?
Different surfaces require different levels of preparation so that paint can adhere correctly. Aluminum and Steel siding for example, while both metals, paint adheres very differently to them. The same goes for your cedar sided home, hardie plank or even stucco. If it takes extra time to prep the surface you want painted you can be sure it will be reflected in the final cost of the project.
Professional Painters Offer A Written Warranty
This is an important one and it’s a little bit deceiving because while some contractors will offer a warranty, they simply just won’t be around to service it down the road. This is especially so with the lowest bids. These painters under value their time because they need the next dollar quick. It’s not a guarantee that they’ll be around in a year to fix that flaking, peeling paint they’ve left you with. A professional painter will offer you a rock solid warranty, in writing and while that’s still not a guarantee you’ll just have to look at the contractors reputation, the length of time they’ve been in business and how they conduct themselves to make that determination for yourself.
If your warranty information is clearly detailed and explained on the estimate you’ve received then it’s a good sign.
Prep Work and Property Protection
Probably the most important part of any painting project. The level of prep work your painter puts in will determine the visual aesthetics of the final product. If your estimate doesn’t account for detailed prep work and an explanation of what your painter will be doing than keep looking. Professional painters put great emphasis on their prep work. While professionals offer a warranty it certainly doesn’t mean they want to deal with warranty claims. They take every effort to make sure your surfaces are prepped properly and the paint goes on smoothly.
Another part of the prep work is making sure your property is protected. This means all areas not meant to be painted need to be covered and protected. This involves the careful placement of masking tape, drop clothes, and other “paint shields” we have at our disposal. We can cover floors, furniture, appliances, flower beds, and more.
Understanding Your Painting Estimate
A good chunk of your estimate will account for the time and materials needed to prep your project for paint. This is important and you’ll want to make sure you are getting what you’re paying for. This is true of exterior paint jobs. Spending the extra time and money to get the job done well will ensure a more enduring paint job and fewer repainting cycles during the life of your home.
White’s Painting and Power Washing is a full service painting contractor in the Indianapolis area. We offer outstanding dependability and excellent quality finished painting work. Dont throw your money away on the lowest possible bid when you can hire a professional painter to do the job right and get a written warranty . With over 30 years experience we can do an excellent job for you.