Top 10 Reasons to Use a Painting Contractor

By Debbie Zimmer (Paint Quality Institute - //

Even experienced do-it-yourselfers sometimes need to turn things over to a pro. Here are 10 reasons to call a paint contractor in:

  1. When painting a two- or three-story home. If you’re not in ideal physical condition, and even if you are, there’s no need to risk life and limb proving that you are capable of painting the exterior of your multi-story home yourself. The work can be tiring, ladders high, and the ground hard. Life is safer on terra firma.
  2. When a great deal of surface preparation is called for. Applying paint is very satisfying, but most exterior paint jobs start with a lot of scraping and sanding, not to mention replacing of rotted wood and missing caulk. This work can be tough and tedious. That’s why people get paid to do it.
  3. When you suspect the presence of lead-based paint. If your home was painted before 1978, it may have lead-based paint, which can cause serious health effects when it’s disturbed by scraping or sanding. A professional will know more than you about handling the situation, and will take appropriate steps to protect you and your family.
  4. When you’re not sure what type of primer and paint to apply. If you don’t know what type of paint is on your home, you may not know what type of paint to apply. On top of that, many paint jobs involve multiple surfaces and problems that may require different types of “specialty” primers. A knowledgeable contractor is better qualified to decide what types of paints and primers will provide the best paint “system” on your home.
  5. When the project requires use of specialized equipment. You might be handy with a brush or roller, but what if the job requires use of a power brush, power sander, power washer, and/or power sprayer? Are you prepared to spend time and effort learning how to use the equipment? Are you willing to spend the money it will require to rent or purchase them?
  6. When applying coatings that require special expertise. Some paint jobs require specialty coatings that should only be applied by a painting professional. Case in point: elastomeric wall coatings, which are extra-thick paints that are used to span cracks in masonry coatings.
  7. When it’s important to finish the job quickly. Maybe you actually do have the good health and skill-set to handle the painting, but simply don’t have the time to complete it. Examples: Maybe a big event at your home is fast-approaching. . .or winter weather, which can hamper paint film formation. Or maybe your real job has gotten very demanding. If so, let someone else do their job! You, the contractor, and the contractor’s crew will all benefit from your decision.
  8. When you have better things to do with your time. Maybe you have not only the good health and skill-set to do your own painting, but also the time. However, the family vacation beckons, or that long-awaited fishing trip with your buddies, or maybe you simply can’t tear yourself away from your golf game. Is it more important to live your life, or to save money?
  9. When you simply need extra hands to complete the job. Even if you’re perfectly capable of doing the painting, the extent of the work might be overwhelming. If that’s the case, you could still do some of the work yourself, but augment your effort with a contractor’s crew.
  10. When you want the best-looking paint job. If you’re the self-reliant type, this is the reason you really don’t want to hear. However, it just might be that an experienced professional really could do the job a lot better.


As you can see, there are many times when it’s wise to turn to a professional painting contractor. But be smart when you do: always get a written contract containing dates, specs, and payment terms; be sure to check references; and verify that the contractor is licensed and insured.

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