Whether you’re in the market to sell your house or the outside just needs a refresh, now is the time to paint your house. Warm-weather days appear more frequently, which means less rain. Spring is considered one of the best seasons to revitalize your home’s exterior. Ideally the outside temperatures for painting should range from 50-85 degrees Fahrenheit. When temperatures rise above that, you risk having paint that dries too fast and clumps on the brush. Below 50 degrees the paint may not stick to the surface, and then crack or peel.
Choose the Right Paint
Faced with a wide array of paint types and colors in the hardware and paint stores can be bewildering and confusing. Before entering a store, do some research so you have an idea of what you want.
If you choose to paint your house yourself, you can afford to splurge on the cost of the paint. Almost always the premium line from any manufacturer will be your best bet – it will cover better and the paint job will endure longer than its more inexpensive counterparts. You can also look at how long the warranty for a particular paint lasts and the longer the warranty, the better the quality. Latex or water-based paint, for ease of application, wins hands down over oil-based for the average homeowner/painter.
Color should be an individual choice unless you have to abide by certain homeowner association rules. Go outside and look objectively at your neighborhood. Are the houses all painted in neutral colors or earth tones? Do you want to blend in or stand out? If you’re in the market to sell, opting for bright purple might discourage some buyers.
If your house has gingerbread trim or other details that you want to stand out, paint those in an unexpected or bold color and keep the main part of the house on the low-key palette. Research house photos online to get an idea of what shades and hues look appealing.
Gather Your Supplies
You’ll need the following before you start:
- Pressure washer (can be rented)
- Caulk and caulking gun
- Drop cloths
- Paint scraper
- Brush, roller (need roller trays, too) or spray gun
- Paint (measure the area you’re going to paint to estimate the number of gallons needed – the major paint companies all have calculators on their websites)
- Painter’s tape
- Spackle knife
- Medium-grit sanding block
- Plastic sheeting
Paint in 10 Easy Steps
Before you begin, check the weather report. Don’t paint if rain is predicted, if it has just rained or foggy weather is forecasted. When you’re ready:
1. Test the paint in an inconspicuous spot. Wait until it’s dry and make sure it’s the color you want and that it’s adhering to the walls without any issues.
2. Pressure wash the full exterior of your home.
3. Spread drop cloths around the house.
4. Using a spackle knife, apply epoxy filler to any cracks or holes. When dry, sand the area with a sanding block.
5. Remove loose or chipped paint with a paint scraper or sanding block.
6. Protect doors, windows, light fixtures and anything you don’t want painted with plastic sheeting and secure with painter’s tape.
7. Pour exterior paint into a bucket, roller tray or sprayer (whichever you plan to use) and work your way from the top of the house to the bottom. Use smooth, overlapping strokes.
8. Let the paint dry.
9. Remove the plastic sheeting covering doors, windows and light fixtures.
10. Paint the trim and doors.
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