DIY and Pro Help With Your Home Projects
Nothing increases the value of your home more than a properly applied fresh coat of paint. With the price of a gallon of paint as low as about $12 in most areas, you can give your house a new look for next to nothing. If you?re a fixing up a place to help sell it, make sure you pick neutral colors (like light shades of earth tones) as they offend fewer buyers. First you must choose a paint. I won?t mention any brand names but most contractors that I know won?t touch the really cheap paints. They are so thin that it can take 3 coats to cover the old paint. With the current price of labor, it is easier to spend $10-15 more per gallon and get the job done twice as fast. You must also choose a finish.
In general, try to use a more glossy finish on the trim than on the walls. The change in finish helps highlight the trim and makes the house look like high quality construction.
Also wet areas like the kitchen and the bathrooms are typically a higher gloss level than other rooms of the house. These areas may get condensation so the higher gloss paints will stand up much better in these conditions.
There are 6 options for the finish of paints:
Matte Finish (Flat Finish)
The main reason to use flat finish paints is to cover up the poor condition of the trim or walls (this can be due to poor workmanship or wear and tear). This is why is common in many new homes that have poor quality finishing of the sheetrock. It does not wear well since the porous nature of the paint easily takes stains. If you are selling a house, flat paint is a good option. If you are buying a house, try to avoid it.
More durable than matte finish, this primarily wall paint can hold up occasional cleaning. Use this paint for the same reasons as you would Matte finish paint, to cover up the quality of the walls. If you have kids or pets, try to avoid both options.
If the walls are in good condition, this is the paint of choice. It is mostly flat so you won?t get any glair that would attract attention to the walls but it holds up better and can be cleaned. If you have not seen this paint on a wall, it really does have a sheen similar to the outside of an egg.
Satin finish has a smooth velvety look. This paint is good for trim that has too may imperfections for semi-gloss or for walls in areas like kitchens, bathrooms or kid?s rooms
Semi-Gloss paints are very common on trim, windows and doors. It is very durable and flows (when applied properly) to help cover defects. It is usually applied in very thick coats. It is the most durable option for painting areas where you expect wear.
Rarely used in homes other than very contemporary ones. This finish looks similar to plastic. It is extremely durable but can magnify any surface imperfections, so careful preparation and sanding is essential before painting with high gloss paints
Here is how I would spec a mid to high-end quality house (that does not have stained trim):
· All ceilings ? flat enamel
· All trim ? semi-gloss
· Kitchens, bathroom, and kids room ? satin finish
· All other rooms ? eggshell finish
This will be the most durable longest-lasting paint combination
For a low-end home, paint everything (ceilings, wall, and trim) matte or flat. By not having contrasting trim, you eliminate the need to tape off the wall and/or trim to get a clean transition line at the trim. If you can apply the paint before the floor is installed, you can spray the house in a few hours.
Learn more about Painting and Staining.
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