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Should You DIY or Hire a Pro for Exterior Painting?

You’ve noticed the exterior paint on your house losing its curb appeal. Maybe it’s fading from exposure to the elements or peeling on the outside. Either way, you need to freshen up the exterior. It’s a possible job to do yourself, however, you’re undecided if it’s better to hire a professional residential painting company for the task. Below, we’ll discuss if it’s worth it one way or the other based on your situation. 

Your Exterior Painting Experience

Ask yourself: how many interior or exterior paint projects have you undertaken? Painting is a profession. Like many other services, there are tricks and methods to become more accurate and efficient with the time you have allotted. This all comes with experience. 

Sometimes it’s not as simple as putting a fresh coat of exterior paint on your house. What if you discover wood integrity problems on the way? What if windows are no longer caulked properly? If your home is older, has noticeable outside damage, or you haven’t painted it before, hiring a pro may save you a lot of time, costs, and headaches. 

House Type & Features for Exterior Paint

Assessing whether the painting project is right for you or a pro can really depend on your home’s style. One main consideration is the house height. Homes which are higher, have multiple stories and are older may be better off left to an expert. There will be a greater surface area to paint, coat and dry. Having more hands, an exterior paint company is able to stay on top of the workload. 

Another aspect to think about is the intricacy of your home. Unless your house is an easy square-shaped block, there are nooks and crannies that can be missed, even with an optimal ladder. If your home is only a single level, painting it yourself should be easier. Detailed painting in awkward positions will happen on higher floors which can be handled better by a professional. 

If your house has noticeable problems, there can be extensive prep work required. If you notice rotting boards, mildew, or paint peeling, it may take a couple of extra days to address these issues first before even starting. If you have an older home built prior to 1978, it’s likely to have lead paint, which needs to be handled safely. You can talk to a paint retailer about these exterior paint issues and they will be able to assist you. 

Exterior Paint Materials & Tools

Having or not acquiring the proper tools for the job will aid in your exterior painting decision-making. Simply by glancing around your work area, do you have enough materials and equipment to begin? From ladders, lifts, prepping materials, paint removers, caulking, applicators, primer, and paint, there can be lots of costly tools to obtain. If you have a lot of these materials on hand, then it might be economic for you to do it yourself. 

Useful Tips on Doing it Yourself: 

In regards to prepping your home’s surface, cleaning is the most important job. Make sure to gather supplies like scrub brushes, masking tape, pails, bleach, a cleaning agent and a powerful hose. If you have plants nearby, ensure to have drop cloths so paint isn’t splattered on them. 

Scraping and paint removal is required to create a smooth surface for your first coat of exterior paint. Carbide scrapers along with a dry brush will smoothly chip away peeling and blistering paint. Note that pressure washing and power sanding can be damaging or dangerous, as the latter can release toxic paint ingredients toward you. Afterwards, find some caulk that’s recommended for windows to seal them up and allow adequate time for it to dry. 

If you’ve done plenty of DIY painting around your home, then you should have a variety of paint applicators. Gather different-sized brushes and try to stick to quality brushes which hold more paint, don’t lose bristles, and apply paint smoother. For primer, ensure to apply it to new, weather or possible problem spots to apply a proper seal. Note the surface doesn’t need to be clean. Verify that the primer is compatible with your chosen paint type, which will typically be acrylic latex paint. This exterior paint type is better at withstanding outdoor elements and retains its colour. Make sure to consult with a retailer or a painting professional on the best paint for your project. 

Decision Time: Do you Hire an Exterior Painting Pro?

How serious are you at tackling an exterior painting project? A DIY job can be a very fulfilling and cost-effective experience. After evaluating some of the key points mentioned above: your painting experience, your home type, and your materials on hand, you should have an idea if you want to take this job on yourself, 

Remember, your home is your most valuable asset and mistakes can cost you a lot more than a few extra drops of paint. It’s a time-consuming and potentially costly project. If you’re unsure about the process or value your leisure time more, there’s no harm in contacting a team of professionals to assist you.