Well as for my first post dealing with painting, I thought it would be good to discuss some important things that every client should ask their painter so that they get the desired outcome. When ever I go into a home these are some of the key points that I always try to go over with clients so that there are no unwanted/unexpected surprises throughout the process.
1. Tell them what your vision is for your project.
It is really important to convey what your purpose is behind you hiring your painter. Is it to just get a fresh coat of paint? Is it to fix damaged areas and restore your walls? Is it to be different and to make a statement? Is it to make them more durable/washable so your kids won’t damage them as easy? These are all really important questions that will help your painter give you a better end product and achieve your desired result.
2. Ask what brand of paint they plan on using.
Most professional painters will have a brand/store that they buy their paint from. It might not be the same as what paint you have picked out. If all you have done is picked a colour then he can take that colour to any store and get it matched. Some times people think that the most expensive paint is always the best but that isn’t true in every case. Get the best bang for your buck. Let your painter buy the paint as he will get contractor pricing instead of what you would get. Also if your home is older than 15 years and hasn’t been painted in the past 15 years then you might have oil based paint on the wall which needs to be primed before latex can go over top.
3. Make sure that it is clear between you and the painter what condition you want the walls to be in when he/she is done.
This is really important. Do you want just a fresh coat of paint on the walls? Do you want only major damage fixed? Or do yo want every deficiency fixed so they look like brand new? Each of these will cost a different amount of money. Walk through with them and show them what you want fixed so it is crystal clear to everyone. This s a good time to go over your expectations for the finished product.
4. Ask if they can supply references.
It is always a good thing to have access to previous clients whether you choose to call them is up to you. Some times just knowing that they took the time to contact past clients and that they were willing to give feedback says a lot. Also see if they have a website or online presence where you could see pictures of previous work.
5. Written Guarantee.
It says a lot about a companies confidence if they are willing to guarantee their work for a period of time or not. See how long it is guaranteed for and if they will give it to you in writing. Some companies guarantees might be 50 seconds or 50 feet, which ever comes first after they walk out the door. You don’t want the used car dealership guarantee.
WCB = Workers’ Compensation Board. In Alberta if a construction company doesn’t have WCB then there is no way I would ever hire them. If one of the workers falls off a ladder in your home and breaks his leg, he could sue you for what ever reason and the employer is not held responsible. If they do have WCB and someone is injured the WCB coverage protects you as the homeowner and the employer is held responsible.
The other aspect of insurance is based on protecting your home. If a painter spills a can of paint/stain all over your carpet, does he have insurance to replace it? Or what if your home burns down because the painter put stain covered rags in your garbage outside? What level of coverage do they have.
Payment is one of those moments that shouldn’t be awkward or uncomfortable in anyway as long as the steps above are followed correctly. Ask your painter when payment will be expected (usually upon completion/inspection). Also find out what methods of payment they accept (Credit, E-transfer, cheque, debit, cash). Supplying their GST number is always a good thing as well. Keep it legal.
If you follow these 7 questions/points, hiring a professional painter will be a stress free easy process that is completely worth the money invested into it.
Stay tuned for our post next Monday on Colour.