Filling gaps with a paintable acrylic-latex caulk cuts down on drafts and makes your trim look better than new. The secret to using caulk is to cut the tip smaller than you think it should be; too much caulk makes a mess. Also, instead of using a nail to break the inner seal, use a small wire so you don't stretch out the nozzle. Also consider buying a dripless caulk gun, which will automatically back off the pressure after each pull on the trigger to prevent unwanted oozing.
I contacted six highly-rated contractors to receive bids for painting the exterior of my Eagle Rock house.  Two never responded, one was too busy to schedule the work before spring, and three responded promptly with inspections and cost estimates.  Mr. Lee of House Painting, Inc. also provided a printed list of references and copies of his business license, insurance and BBB rating.  He was low bidder by a small margin, and I contracted with him for the work.  His crew was outstanding - excellent preparation (sanding, priming, stucco patching), fast and efficient paint coverage, and excellent clean-up at the end of each work day.  I will certainly call them in the future for interior painting.
In this Dec.18,1984, file photo, United Motor Manufacturing Co. President Tatsuro Toyoda gets in the drivers seat of the newly unveiled sporty 4-door subcompact "Nova" in the new Fremont, Calif., United Motor Manufacturing Co. plantjointly jowned by General Motors and Toyota. Toyoda, a former president of Toyota Motor Corp., who led its climb to rank among the world’s top automakers, and the son of the Japanese automaker’s founder, has died. He was 88. Paul Sakuma, AP
This is the memoir of a professional painter (think houses, not canvas) from Montana who desperately wants to be something else. Or does he? Burbidge rolls out the long, sometimes painful, but always interesting journey he underwent for 15 years, and his eventual break with that fascinating subculture, all the while retaining his painter’s soul. The book, as you might assume, is not really about painting. It’s about the people who apply the paint. It’s also about their lives, loves, hates, prejudices, addictions, and phobias. Burbidge describes them as “Dressed in white as they craft a backdrop to civilization, painters invite invisibility, smarting from the stigma of a simpleton occupation.” The author’s masterful descriptions, dialogue and characterizations serve as an ideal base coat for these entertaining stories in which humor is often found even amid the soul-deadening weight of the daily grind. Burbidge hints at an undeniable pride in being a professional painter. And for good reason, as he says in his introduction: “First fact about paint: it’s only one-thousandth of an inch thick when dry. But that one-thousandth of an inch protects and colorizes most of what humans construct on this planet, so what it lacks in depth it recovers in width, despite going largely unnoticed except by the people who put it there. The painters.” The next time I visit a supermarket or cross a bridge, I will try to remember that someone had to go up there, brush, roller, or sprayer in hand, and do the job that most of us take for granted. I’ll think about what that person looks like, if he has kids, a college degree, a gambling addiction, a penchant for practical jokes, or a chip on her shoulder about how the public perceives her choice of occupation. And if you read this powerful and entertaining collection, I bet you will, too.
Remember: You want to get the highest quality paint your budget will allow to ensure its lasting beauty. You'll also need painting supplies like primer, brushes, rollers and painter's tape. A professional will have these items on-hand. According to statistics, paint and other supplies account for about 15 percent of a professional painter's total cost; labor will factor into 85 percent of their charges.
As an owners rep and former estimator for a gc i do expect to pay a reasonable deposit say 10 percent and then weekly progress payments. I am asking the painter to book his time and to do the work on my schedule. Most painting companies are not huge operations they will pay their staff weekly. For most repaints i ask for one tinted primer coat and one finish coat for 100 percent coverage. New work gets one tinted primer and two finish coats for 100 percent coverage. The cost of the paint is not really that different for colors or finish. Brands like european fine paint and C2 are more expensive than Ben Moore and sometimes more difficult to roll based on their consistency. Some home depot brands are as expensive as the Ben Moore and of equal quality others aren't. Red paints are notorious for number of coats required and special priming requirements.
A professional painter will help you select an exterior paint designed for long-lasting results, superior protection, and ample coverage. Higher quality paint requires fewer coats and lasts far longer, saving you money down the road. Oil or latex paints in a flat/matte or satin finish make excellent choices for the exterior of your home. These paints will endure extreme weather conditions, can be customized to your specific climate, and are ideal for painting siding.
I turn away any job when the client refuses to pay anything up front. It sends a red flag. I also charge a scheduling fee which is non-refundable. I get 33 percent when I show up and begin work. Another percentage halfway through, and the balance upon completion after client is satisfied. There needs to be skin in the game for both parties as a measure of good faith. If you are dealing with a reputable company (did your due diligence, right?) why wouldn't you want to pay something as work progresses? We do this not only because we love to paint but we require cash flow to stay in business. There is not always 'money in the bank' as you suggest. It's tough these days. The suggestion buy 'Kim' 'Never pay a contractor a deposit' is nonsensical.
Texas Professional Painting understands that your home, business, or commercial property is important and that a sound painting job protects your investment. Our skilled San Antonio exterior painters are highly experienced and can tackle any project – whether it is stucco, wood, vinyl, or brick. With Texas Professional Painting, you can get peace of mind that every project will be completed promptly and professionally. Your satisfaction guaranteed.
D weekend in August.  Robert sent me a complete bid, signed upfront.  It arrived timely manner. He was doing most of the walls and the kitchen cabinets. He arrived on time, prepared and walked/talked me through the process. He was really good a outlining the days it would take and the steps involved so I was able to push back the flooring and avoid overlap.  We added a double-door to the project after the fact and Robert was able to accomodate me.  He  gave me paint recommnendations.    After the flooring was completed there was an issue with baseboards. The company had torn them off and not replaced correctly.  Robert notified me and went out of his way to send a detailed description of what happened.  This was just purely from an ethical, moral "right thing to do" to help me out standpoint!!  I would not hesitate to reccomend Robert as a contractor and painter. Not only a good guy but does a great job and extremeley professional. If he lived in CA he would be my "go-to" painter for every project.  If you need a painter look no further.
Primers aren't just diluted paint. They're formulated to establish a solid, even base, seal stains and ensure that the topcoats of paint go on smoothly and bond securely to the surface. "Most homeowners use latex primers, but the pros stick to alcohol and alkyd primers because they'll cover almost anything," says John Weeks, of John the Painter in Mobile, Alabama. Primer can affect the appearance of the topcoat. "It's okay to spot-prime the ceilings but not the walls, because primed spots will show," adds Span.
For smoothing the edges of scraped spots here and there, you can wrap a piece of sandpaper around a wood block. For larger areas, it's less tiring and more effective to use an electric orbital sander. Move it up and down or back and forth across the surface to remove old paint and smooth rough edges at the same time. Don't use an electric disc sander or a belt sander. Both can leave swirls or dips in the wood that will show through a new coat of paint.
The pros were split on this tip. "Masking tape is problematic," says Mark Dixon, a painter in Missoula, Montana, and author of "House Painting Inside and Out" (Taunton Press, 1997). "Paint can bleed behind the tape, or remove the paint it's stuck to." Another problem is bridging. "Latex paints form a skin," says Dixon. "Removing painted tape can tear the skin, resulting in a ragged rather than a sharp line." Lastly, taping takes time. "Learning how to cut in with a brush takes practice, but if you can do it, you'll leave most tapers in the dust," Dixon says. (Cutting in is painting just the surface you want, not the surface adjacent to it — for example, where a wall meets the ceiling.) On the other hand, "If you can't cut in, you can't beat tape," says Span. The pros we spoke with all recommend painter's (blue) tape because it's easier to remove than masking tape. To prevent bleeding, Span uses a putty knife to bed the tape. After letting the paint dry, he scores the edge of the tape line with a utility knife to avoid tearing the paint.
Even if you go it alone, specialize to keep your initial investment low. If you do only interior painting, for example, you might get by with one ladder, a few brushes, rollers, basic hand tools and such, for an investment of less than $300. Again, you can add to your tools as you need to (every job is a bit different), and parlay profits into the equipment necessary for exterior painting or working on large commercial properties.

If you are unsure about what colors will work best in a space, you may wish to hire an interior decorator to help. Decorators can look at your furnishings, the size and shape of a room, and the amount of light it gets to help you determine the best shades for the space. Design services cost around $50 to $200 an hour, and can help you find the perfect colors for your home.
Inspect the surface area for holes, cracks or other problems and apply acrylic caulk to fill them in. Use a putty knife to smooth out the caulk and remove any excess to prevent bumps. For particularly thin or narrow crevices, you may have to use your finger to smooth out the caulk. Caulk contracts and shrinks, so apply a second layer once it's dried.
The time needed to complete an exterior paint job varies depending on the size of the home, the condition of your home’s exterior, the weather conditions and type of paint used on the job. An average project lasts 3-4 days, while a complex project may take a week or more. Additional time may be needed to fix loose or damaged siding or add primer to areas without coverage. Your painter will provide a timeline that explains how long the project will last and will schedule the job to avoid inclement weather.
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