6 Ways Some Home Painting Services Cut Corners
To do it yourself or hire a professional? That is the question that crosses everyone’s mind before committing to a home painting project. If money was a non-factor, it would always be best to have your home painted by the pros, but most of us are on a budget. For this reason, it might be tempting to go it alone instead. However, DIY projects can be expensive (not to mention time-consuming) in their own right and fraught with problems, especially if you’re not experienced or prepared.
Still, hiring painters doesn’t guarantee that you’ll end up with excellent results, either -- there are, unfortunately, a number of malicious, devious, and/or lazy people out there, and the painting sector has its share of them. Fortunately, the worst offenders often don’t stick around too long (enough complaints and negative public reviews will have that effect). Despite this fact, plenty of painters continue to do business while slyly taking shortcuts, deceiving customers, and delivering less-than-ideal results.
When looking for painters to hire, then, it’s important to remain vigilant so you don’t regret your decision. And knowing the various ways in which some companies might take the low road can help you separate the wheat from the chaff. Here are six ways less than reputable home painting services may cut corners.
How Some Painters Cut Corners
1. Skip Important Preparations
Proper preparation is half the battle of any successful paint job. Certain surfaces should be covered to keep paint off of them, paintable surfaces should be cleaned, sanded, and primed prior to painting, interior rooms should be well-ventilated to reduce odors and harmful fumes -- the list goes on. One of the primary ways certain local house painters cut corners is by speeding past these crucial steps or skipping them entirely. While it’s true that this prep work can be time-consuming, neglecting to perform it can result in major messes, poor paint adhesion and uneven coats, negative health effects, and more. Ultimately, then, painters who take these shortcuts often end up costing their customers more time and money as they may need to invest in touch-ups, clean up spilled and splattered paint, replace ruined flooring, furniture, and/or fixtures, and so on.
2. Use Low-Quality Paint
Unsurprisingly, the cost of paint and other materials makes up a significant portion of the project’s total cost. While the home painting service is responsible for supplying these products, the customer bears much of the cost burden. To keep costs low, some painters might purchase cheaper paints, but don’t be seduced by the smaller number -- cheap paint products are typically thinner, less durable, and generally held to a lower standard than more expensive, high-quality products. The most devious contractors might even pretend that they’re using quality paint while actually applying low-grade stuff, all the while passing the inflated cost onto you so they can reap the extra revenue. In the end, you may end up paying more than you would if you had simply purchased the paint yourself, and you’ll be faced with flimsy results that don’t stand the test of time.
3. Dilute Paint Products
Even if a painting service does use high-quality paint, they might try to stretch the use of each can by watering it down. If the painters you hire come to your home with paint canisters that have been previously opened, there’s no way of knowing whether or not said paint has been diluted until it’s perhaps too late. So, pay attention to the products they bring with them.
4. Don’t Apply Enough Coats
Many surfaces require more than one coat of paint for full, even coverage. There are exceptions, of course, such as previously-painted surfaces that are still in decent condition. Applying additional coats takes some time, so some interior house painters might prefer to not even bother with a second (or third) coat. If you aren’t around during the paint job and/or you don’t know what to look for, you can be easily duped into thinking your surfaces have been coated with a sufficient number of coats when, in fact, they have not -- this is why this shortcut has become so commonplace, and why it’s so important to be on the lookout for it.
5. Spray when Not Called For
There are multiple ways to paint a surface, and different situations call for different methods. Applying paint with a roller, for instance, is typically called for when painting large, unobstructed areas such as walls and ceilings. Brushes are often used to cut in edges and paint more precise features. Paint can also be sprayed onto surfaces, but this method should be used for more specific applications. Some painting contractors may resort to using paint spray for exterior painting projects simply to speed up the process. While this method is certainly faster than rolling or brushing, it can result in uneven coverage and improper adhesion. If your painters do prefer to spray exterior house paint, then, make sure they give you a detailed explanation as to why they’re going this route -- speed isn’t everything.
6. Leave Out Key Details in Their Contract
If you’re looking for a blatant red flag that indicates a painter is likely to cut corners, look no further than the contract itself. The less-detailed the document, the more room there is for confusion, hidden fees, left-out duties, and so on. If your contract doesn’t explicitly lay out each component of the project and the accompanying cost, your local painters can more easily get away with cutting corners across the board, whether it’s by not completing a task, neglecting to apply the proper number of coats, failing to clean up after themselves, etc. The bottom line is this: don’t sign any deal or partner with any painter until you know exactly what’s included in the project and what it will cost upfront. This way, if any shortcuts are taken, you’ll have legal, documented recourse.
Don’t Buy into Taking the Easy Way Out
Much is at stake when committing to a home painting project. You don’t want to break the bank or your back in the process, nor do you want shoddy results that will need to be redone in no time. Hiring professional home painters may be your best bet, but only if the company you hire is skilled, reliable, transparent, and dedicated to long-lasting, beautiful results. Going with a painter who cuts corners simply isn’t worth it, no matter how low their prices may be.
At Nash Painting, we take pride in our work, and we don’t consider a project complete until our customer is totally satisfied. This is why we’ve become the trusted go-to painter for homeowners in Nashville, Brentwood, and Franklin, TN. To learn more about us, our services, and our values, call us at 615-829-6858 today!