How to Prepare Your Home for Painting

home exterior painting

If your home in Wilmington needs to be updated, a fresh coat of exterior paint is a fast, affordable way to improve its curb appeal. So if your home exterior is looking shabby or if you are simply ready for a change, consider painting the exterior of your home yourself or enlist a professional painter to do it for you.

Painting a home is a huge job, but it isn’t an impossible job for some homeowners. You just need to do your research to know how to prep the exterior surface by scheduling residential pressure washing, as well as what type of brushes and paints you need to use.

You can also team up with a professional painter by doing all of the prep work on your own, but then letting their team come over and do the actual painting with their best tools, safety equipment and professionally selected paint.

Whichever choice is best for you, you’ll still need to know exactly how to prepare your home for painting. Here are some of the most important things to consider.

6 House Painting Preparation Tips

  1. Choose which parts of the home to paint, collect the ladders and other necessary safety equipment. If you are preparing to do the painting by yourself, you’ll be glad you did. Having a plan will make the actual painting go a lot faster once you begin. Gathering your equipment ahead of time guarantees that when you begin painting, you shouldn’t have to stop and search for needed supplies, meaning you’ll be able to maintain a wet edge the entire time you are painting.
  2. Choose the right paint and brushes. The fun part of painting your house is choosing the color or color combo. You will also need to choose the right paint finishes for all parts of the home. Latex is better than oil-based paint for home exteriors. It is less messy and much easier to clean up. The flat surfaces need more of a flat, or matte, finish, versus semi-gloss for the trim. You’ll need synthetic fiber brushes for latex paint. Rollers and sprayers are also time-saving options if possible.
  3. Pressure wash. Finally, it’s time to begin prepping the exterior of your home for its brand new paint! Put time into pressure washing your home (or hiring a local pressure washing service) to remove any cracked or peeling paint. The high pressure water is the recommended way to eliminate old paint, and it simultaneously cleans the exterior of your home. Some of the sections of paint should peel off as soon as you spray over them. That’s a sign that the paint was deteriorating and needed to be replaced!
  4. Remove peeling paint. Now that the old paint has been loosened, get more of it off with a plastic or metal straight edge, being careful not to dig into the wood. Then sand surfaces for a smooth finish. It isn’t necessary to sand every surface all the way down to the bare wood. Any sections where the paint is still adhered just need to be cleaned and have the edges sanded so the new coat of paint goes on smooth.
  5. Prime. Don’t skip the primer! Primer is an important step because it covers up any prior paint (especially with dark colors), results in even color for your new coat, and a smooth exterior with minimal imperfections. Let the primer dry based on the directions so that the original layer of paint won’t mix with it or create a rough patch.
  6. Plan to paint on the best day. A professional painter can look at the weather forecast and determine the most opportune day for painting a home. That’s why they’re professionals! If you want to do the painting on your own, wait for a day that is between 75 and 85 degrees, and with very low humidity. This will result in the best adhesion.

Why Painting Your Home is a Good Idea

Not only does a new paint job make your home look years newer, it also provides a layer of protection to the overall exterior of your home.

Paint helps prevent insects from eating or boring into your home’s exterior. It also stops wear and tear from the elements. Good quality paint prevents wood from rotting and dirt doesn’t stick to paint the same way it does to wood.

Peeling paint is an obvious signal that it needs to be replaced. If your paint is peeling on your home, you really need to go ahead and have it repainted to protect the wood beneath.

Worn paint really takes a toll on your home’s appearance. If you’re worried about curb appeal, painting your home is one of the best things you can do.

Painting is also a good idea if your home doesn’t seem to “fit in” in the neighborhood. If your home’s exterior color makes it stand out too much, or if it is the opposite and you really want it to stand out, a different color can completely change its vibe.

Hiring a Local Professional Painter in Wilmington

After prepping is finished, you have the option to hand the work over to a professional painter in Wilmington (if you hadn’t already chosen that from the start!). Hiring a painter is affordable. It also guarantees that the results will exceed your expectations with little effort from you.

Hiring a local painter to paint your home has several obvious benefits:

  • A professional painter knows the most efficient way to do the job, meaning the paint will look a lot better and the project will be a lot faster.
  • Pros don’t make a big mess. Their results will be much neater, with no extra paint splattered or spilled on your home.
  • Because of their skill and knowledge, your new exterior paint will likely last longer than if you painted by yourself.
  • A professional painter will already have the safety equipment needed to paint areas higher than ground level.

Depending on your DIY abilities and interests, you can trust your painter to do all the pre-painting preparation, too. Most pros are fully prepared to take care of every part of the job, from eliminating old paint and cleaning the exterior to actually applying the new paint.