How to Prepare Your Home for Painting

home exterior painting

If your house in Cambridge needs to be updated, a fresh coat of exterior paint is a fast, inexpensive option to improve its curb appeal. So if your home exterior is starting to look worn down or if you are just ready for a change, consider repainting the outside of your house yourself or enlist a local painter to do the job for you.

Painting a house is a big job, but it isn’t an impossible job for some homeowners. You need to do your research to understand how to prepare the exterior surface by scheduling residential pressure washing, as well as which brushes and paints to use.

You can partner with a professional painter by completing all the prep work yourself, but then letting their crew come to your home and do the actual painting with their best tools, safety equipment and professionally selected paint.

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

6 House Painting Preparation Tips

  1. Decide which parts to paint, gather the ladders and other necessary safety equipment. If you are planning to do the painting by yourself, you’ll thank yourself later. Having a plan will make the actual painting project go much faster once you get started. Organizing your tools beforehand guarantees that once you start painting, you won’t have to stop and search for needed supplies, meaning you’ll have to maintain a wet edge the entire time you are painting.
  2. Choose good paint and brushes. The most fun part of painting your house is deciding the color or color combination. You’ll also need to choose the right paint finishes for each part of the house. Latex is better than oil-based paint for home exteriors. It’s less messy and easier to clean up. The flat surfaces require more of a flat, or matte, finish, versus semi-gloss. You’ll need to us synthetic fiber brushes for latex paint. Rollers and sprayers are efficient options.
  3. Pressure wash. Finally, it is time to start prepping the exterior of your house for its brand new paint! Invest time into pressure washing your house (or hiring a local pressure washing service) to wash off any cracked or peeling paint. The extreme pressure water is the recommended way to remove peeling paint, and it also cleans the outside of your house. Some sections of paint will peel right off as soon as you spray them. That’s a sign that the paint was aging and had to be replaced!
  4. Remove peeling paint. Now that the original paint has been loosened, scrape it off the house with a metal or plastic straight edge, being careful not to dig into the wood surface. Then sand bumpy surfaces for a smooth finish. It isn’t important to sand each surface down to the bare wood. Any sections where the paint is still adhered need to be cleaned and have the edges sanded so the new coat of paint goes on smooth.
  5. Prime. Do not skip priming! Primer is a very important part of preparation because it covers up any previous paint (especially important with dark colors), results in an even color for your new coat, and a smoother exterior with less imperfections throughout. Let the primer dry according to the directions so that the first layer of paint doesn’t mix with it or result in a rough patch on the surface.
  6. Plan to paint on the best day. A professional painter can look at the weather forecast and tell you the most opportune day for applying exterior paint. That’s why they’re experts! If you want to do the painting yourself, wait for a day that is somewhere between 75 and 85 degrees, and with little 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 house look several years newer, it also creates a layer of protection for the overall exterior of your house.

Paint will help prevent insects from eating or clawing into your home’s exterior. It also reduces wear and tear from inclement weather. High quality paint stops wood from rotting and dirt doesn’t adhere to paint the same way it does to bare wood.

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

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

Painting is a good idea if your house doesn’t 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 want it to stand out, a different color can totally update its look.

Hiring a Local Professional Painter in Cambridge

After the prepping is done, you might want to hand the job over to a professional painter in Cambridge (if you hadn’t already chosen that from the start!). Hiring a painter is affordable. It also guarantees that the results will exceed expectations with less effort from you.

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

  • A professional painter will know the best way to do the job, which means the paint will look much better and the project will go a lot faster.
  • Companies don’t make a mess. Their results will be neater, with no extra paint splattered or spilled around home.
  • Because of their skill and experience, your new exterior paint will probably last longer than if you painted by yourself.
  • A professional painter will already have the safety equipment necessary to paint surfaces above ground level.

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