What To Look For When Hiring A Painting Contractor
There are painters and there are painters, and whenever a homeowner decides it is time for a repaint, choosing the right contractor is never an easy task. We have all heard tales of woe when dissatisfied customers have realised they hired the wrong outfit, and what seemed to be a straightforward job quickly turned into a nightmare. If you are contemplating and interior or exterior paint makeover in your home, here are some important points to bear in mind when looking for a painting contractor.
- Established and Experienced – If a painting contractor has been in business for more than 5 years and has a good name locally, you should be in good hands. You might be looking for a painter in Perth or Melbourne, and by doing a little research, it will soon become apparent if a contractor is not up to scratch.
- Awards and Accreditations – For a company to receive awards or accreditations, it must have done something right, and if they consistently pick up awards in the construction industry, this is a sure sign they are professional and attain a very high standard of workmanship.
- Solid Warranty – If a painter is confident in his work, then he should have no problem issuing a warranty. Some of the better companies actually guarantee their work for a full 5 years, which means you really can’t go wrong. If you are based in WA, there is a master painter in Perth that offers a professional 5-year warranty on all of their work.
- Professional Advice – A reputable painting contractor would be happy to give their clients the benefit of their experience by spending time discussing options. Choosing colours is important, and a professional painter would assist the client in the design stage and always have their best interests at heart. The latest generation of paints can offer the homeowner many benefits, and the average person wouldn’t be aware of this, so the painter should point out the product information and offer their professional advice for free.
What types of materials will be used?
You may have certain types of products or materials, such as “eco-paint”, that you want to be used in your building, so it’s important to discuss these with the commercial painting company in advance. You should discuss what equipment will be needed to complete the job. Your building may have a tall lobby entrance with a ceiling that needs painting. You’ll need to understand what equipment the company will be using to paint the ceiling to insure it doesn’t restrict business needs and is safe for the company to use.
They never ask for a deposit
While some paint contractors may request a deposit before beginning the work, well-established, successful painting professionals have sufficient operating income and can easily afford to purchase materials and make payroll. Be wary of a contractor who asks for a deposit! If he is unable to purchase materials, he’s probably unable to pay his staff, too. Every year, too many homeowners fall victim to contractors who walk off the job—and out of town—with the deposit in their pockets.
If you agree to advanced payment of any kind, make sure that materials have been purchased and are on your property, leaving you some kind of leverage, should the contractor default on the work. The bottom line is that a reliable painting contractor should never request a deposit before starting your project.
They offer a written warranty
You can tell a lot about a painting contractor by his warranty. Well-known contractors with established reputations are respected by paint suppliers who, in turn, pass on extended or even lifetime warranties on their paints. This is because they know the product will be applied the right way. For any number of reasons, less experienced contractors may not have valuable relationships with suppliers.
On the labor side, a great contractor works with solid, experienced painters whose work he knows he can stand behind with an extended labor warranty. So, before you hire someone to paint your house, talk to them about their warranties and make sure you are covered.
They invite you to see a job in progress
If a contractor is confident about the way they work, they’ll prove it by asking you to judge for yourself, not only at the end of a job, but while work is in progress. Things to look for:
Work vehicles: are they clean, organized and professional?
The painters: are they neatly dressed and groomed?
Materials: are ladders, scaffolding, drop cloths and electrical equipment in good condition?
Is work being done carefully so as not to damage landscaping or property?
The best painting contractors treat a home, and the homeowner, with respect and professionalism at all times.
What to Look for in a Good Paint
There are many false pretenses that are put on the labels of paint cans. So, what should you look for in a good paint product? Raw materials and the percentage of solids by volume are most important when shopping for an exterior house paint.
Stay away from manufacturers that don’t clearly display what raw materials are used. They are usually not displayed for a reason. Mainly, because of the use of poor raw materials. So… which solids are we looking for?
Acrylic polymers are the most durable and commonly found in quality exterior paints. Fortified paints use a blend of raw material to give ultimate durability. Fortified paints enable raw materials that normally would not blend, to be blended together.
Vinyl polymers are also present in exterior products. Durable products should only contain a small percentage of Vinyl. A Larger amount of Vinyl polymers are most commonly found in low-end products, which are not as durable.
High Vinyl containing paints breakdown and chalk at a must higher rate. However, Vinyl polymers do allow paints to expand and contract. Even with the advantages of allowing expansion and contraction this raw material should be a limited raw material used. This material should not be the main material used in any premium exterior paint.
For absolute best results, A Touch of Color recommends the following products for interior and exterior painting.