Easiest Trick for Home Resale: Interior Painting

By Erik Braunitzer - Douglas Elliman Real Estate Company (New York City)

One of the easiest tricks for maintaining your home is through interior painting. Not only does paint protect walls and wood, but it is also an affordable way to freshen up any room in a house.

Before painting, inspect walls for dents, holes, and cracks. Repairing imperfections can mean the difference between changing the color of a room and achieving a professional looking paint job. Use spackle to repair small blemishes in walls, and use caulk to seal cracks and to create unnoticeable transitions between baseboard and walls or between crown moulding and walls.

Consider sanding walls and trim prior to painting to create an extra smooth surface. Use sanding sponges or an orbital sander to dull the existing paint. Choose coarse to medium grit sanding sponges or sanding discs, depending on the condition of the surface. Sanding is an important step in painting, because paint will adhere better to a smooth, clean wall.

When choosing a paint color, also be aware of the the sheen selections available. Flat paints tend to hide wall imperfections. Eggshell, semi-gloss and high-gloss paints may show imperfections, but are easier to clean. Flat paints are popular in living rooms and bedrooms. Eggshell, semi-gloss, and high-gloss paints are more common in kitchens and bathrooms. Semi-gloss and high-gloss paints are also a popular selection for trim, baseboard and crown moulding. Ceilings are typically painted in a flat sheen.

Use painter’s tape when painting hard to reach areas such as a narrow strip of wall that lands between door casing and a corner. Place tape along the casing, and a paint brush will easily reach the strip of wall without covering freshly painted trim in wall color. Also try putting painter’s tape on the floor beneath baseboard. This protects the floor when applying paint to baseboard.

If repainting the ceiling, walls, and trim in an entire room, using the proper order of operations will make the job considerably easier. First paint the ceiling and let it dry completely. Then coat the trim completely, extending the coverage onto the walls. After the trim is dry, use a brush to cut in the wall color where the walls meet trim. Finally, use a roller to apply paint to the walls.

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