Soothing blue paint on entry walls

DIY Hiring a Professional Painter

Ready to refresh or update your home?  Using a professional painting contractor can help make your vision a reality.

dresser and chairA professional painting contractor can help achieve the look you want without having the additional investment in equipment and supplies needed to do the job right.  Hiring the right professional can make your home painting project go smoothly with less stress.  But it is important to hire the right painter for your project.

Here are some important guidelines for finding a high quality painting contractor:

Referrals

Probably the most reliable way to find a high quality painting contractor is to use referrals from friends or neighbors who have recent good experiences with painting contractors in your area. You can also get referrals from your local Mallory Paint Store.

Get Estimates from at Least Three Contractors

When you receive contractor estimates, ask the contractor to include specific information about what will be done for the painting project.  This will help determine the value differences if you receive widely differing estimates.

Interview Potential Contractors

Consider asking the following questions:

  • How long have you been in business?
  • Do you have a current Washington State contractor’s license? (Homeowners can verify the contractor’s license on line.)
  • Is the contractor bonded and insured? (This helps determine whether your contractor and any hired workers are insured for injury and liability.)
  • Are you a member of any national or local painting contractors’ associations?
  • Will you subcontract this project or perform it yourself?
  • Can you provide references?
  • What kind of written guarantees do you provide with your work?
  • What products do you use?

Walk-Through the Project Area

Take each potential contractor on a walk-through to view the areas (indoor or outdoor) to be painted while discussing the work you would like to have completed.  Be specific about which surfaces you want to have painted (walls, trims, moldings, ceilings, etc.) and the paint colors and finishes you want used.  Stop by your local Mallory Paint Store for help with color combinations.

Finding a Professional Work Style

Part of hiring a high quality painting contractor includes ensuring professional work habits:

  • Does the painting contractor talk about your project in a professional way?
  • Is the contractor courteous?
  • Is the contractor busy? (Good ones usually are.)
  • Does the contractor return your phone calls and provide estimates in a timely manner?
  • Is the contractor on time for appointments?

Check References

Ask for references and when talking to references, ask about timeliness, quality of outcome and also how the contractor treated their home. If possible, visit references to evaluate the painter’s work in person and to see how well it has held up over time.

Review the Contract

Once you’ve settled on a contractor, ask for a written contract and review it carefully. As a consumer, you have the right to ask detailed questions about any issues you need clarified. In particular, be sure to verify the following:

  • What exactly is being painted (house, trim, walls, molding, etc.)
  • Details on preparation and cleanup
  • Paint colors for each area to be painted
  • How the contractor will protect your plants, patios, furniture, or other items
  • How much time the project will take, from start to finish
  • When and how the contractor will be paid

With these guidelines, you’ll be ready to hire the right painting contractor for your home painting project.