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Which Painting Contractor Should You Choose?

Which Painting Contractor Should You Choose?

Looking For a Painting Contractor Fast?

February 24, 2010

If you're repainting all or part of your home and hiring your own painting contractor, you should consider more than the contractor's ability to apply paint. The difference between one local painting company and another is often how good a businessperson he or she is. A major factor is how well and how promptly the contractor communicates with you. You're behind the wheel in hiring a contractor's painting services, so how do you reach your destination?

Colorful Painting Services

Your first step should be choosing the new paint colors for your project. Narrow down your paint choices and purchase at least two different colors to try on a wall. Paint a 4' x 4' swatch of the samples with two coats. The painting contractor should match your final choices.

How to Find a Good Painting Contractor

Next, ask friends and neighbors for referrals from contractors they're happy with. Try to get at least four painting contractor referrals. After you have the referrals, take the following steps:

  • Before contacting them, call the Registrar of Contractors and Better Business Bureau to confirm a current state license, and any complaints or lawsuits.
  • Call the contractors and ask for references who are not relatives or personal friends.
  • Call all references and ask if the work and relationship were satisfactory. Also, ask whether you can see the finished job.
  • Meet the contractor and ask to see proof of Workman's Compensation, insurance, and bonding.
  • Ask who the crew will be and how long the crew members have been with that local painting company.

Ready, Set, Get a Painting Services Bid

If you've had trouble getting your messages returned from the local painting company during the get-acquainted stage, cross the contractor off your list. Many jobs become frustrating because messages are returned slowly or not at all. This behavior could be frustrating during the work period. Finally, ask for bids from the contractors still on your list. The bid and contract should do the following:

  • Include the painting contractor's name, license number, and phone numbers.
  • Iinclude descriptions of everything to be painted, what's not to be painted, paint brands and colors, how many coats, and whether the paint will be sprayed, rolled, or brushed on. The bid and contract should guarantee no uneven paint coverage.
  • State who moves furniture.
  • State in writing the size of the crew and an estimated number of days (give or take a few) for completing the job. Also, the bid and contract should state a fair financial consequence of not completing work as agreed.
  • State the price and payment schedule. You should withhold a large amount until all work is done to your satisfaction.

Don't be afraid to hold the painting contractor to every term of the contract. After all, it's your money. If the contractor is good, he or she does what was agreed to and hopes for your excellent referral.

 

About the author: Suzanne Clemenz designed her passive solar home and interacted with the contractors every day of the 6-month project. She started drawing floor plans and making models in the early '70s after purchasing several building lots. Recently she expanded and remodeled her newly-purchased home, working with contractors on the floorplan, electrical changes, painting, installation of wood laminate flooring, flood prevention walls and stonework, major drainage issues, an irrigation system and a landscaping. Researching and keeping up on issues and products related to home design and maintenance is an ongoing avocation.
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