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10 Things Not to Do When Painting Your Home

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You Paint It Yourself

You really think you could take on that professional painter in a house-painting showdown? David De Lossy/Photodisc/Thinkstock

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The biggest mistake you can make when painting the exterior of your home?

Painting the exterior of your home.

Now, let's be fair. Painting a house's exterior doesn't have to be a professional's job. Plenty of folks have dived into a home-painting project and gotten a terrific result. But those people are no doubt motivated, guided by research and undaunted in the face of setbacks. They might not be entirely normal.

Most of us are cheap, clueless and impatient for a quick, flawless result. And that might mean that you're better off hiring a group of dedicated contractors who can guarantee your vision. Take into account all the things we've just talked about: how big the job is, what kind of timeline you expect, cost and materials. If you're not feeling super confident about the task -- or you do have a bigger obstacle, like lead paint -- hire someone to do the dirty work.

Author's Note: 10 Things Not to Do When Painting Your Home

Since my husband routinely uses my last name as verb meaning "to do a house maintenance job quickly, cheaply and shoddily," I pretty much just brainstormed all the dumb things I would do if asked to paint a house exterior. Plan for two days (in the highest heat of summer), give the house a cursory squirt with a hose, buy applicators from a garage sale and expired paint from a discount outlet, then get bored with taping windows and trim halfway through. Voilá! Kershnered it.

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Sources

  • Bonderud, Doug. "4 common DIY house painting mistakes." AngiesList.com. Oct. 11, 2013. (June 16, 2014) http://www.angieslist.com/articles/4-common-diy-house-painting-mistakes.htm
  • California Paints. "Painting Exterior Surfaces." Californiapaints.com. (June 16, 2014) http://www.californiapaints.com/project-guides/painting-basics/finish-coats/exterior-painting.aspx
  • Chism, Mike. "Is it worth buying the most expensive paints?" Chism Brothers Painting. 2014. (June 16, 2014) http://www.chismbrothers.com/blog/is_it_worth_buying_the_most_expensive_paint
  • DIY Network. "10 things you must know when painting a house exterior." DIYNetwork.com. (June 16, 2014) http://www.diynetwork.com/painting/10-things-you-must-know-when-painting-a-house-exterior/pictures/index.html
  • Flietner, Maureen Blaney. "Painting the House." BobVila.com. 2014. (June 16, 2014) http://www.bobvila.com/articles/372-painting-the-house-should-you-hire-a-pro/#.U59mnJSwJaZ
  • Heavens, Al. "5 steps before tackling an exterior paint job." Chicago Tribune. Jan. 31, 2011. (June 16, 2014) http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2011-01-31/classified/sc-home-0131-home-remedies-20110131_1_exterior-paint-job-debbie-zimmer-adhesive-foam-tape-squares
  • Hurst-Wajszczuk, Joe. "How to paint your house's exterior." This Old House. 2014. (June 16, 2014) http://www.thisoldhouse.com/toh/photos/0,,20180479_20399507,00.html
  • Kolle, Jefferson. "How to strip years of paint off a house." This Old House. (June 16, 2014) http://www.thisoldhouse.com/toh/article/0,,386353,00.html
  • Minnesota Department of Health. "Exterior Lead Paint Removal." Minnesota.gov. June 4, 2013. (June 16, 2014) http://www.health.state.mn.us/divs/eh/lead/homes/exterior.html
  • Paint and Decorating Retailers Association. "Frequently asked questions about paint applicators." PDRA.Org. 2013. (June 16, 2014) http://www.pdra.org/paint-applicators.html
  • Resene. "Check the weather before painting." Resene.com. (June 16, 2014) http://www.resene.com/homeown/painting-your-home/Check_the_weather.pdf
  • Schwartz, Donna Boyle. "What type of paint is best for exteriors?" BobVila.com. 2014. (June 16, 2014) http://www.bobvila.com/articles/oil-vs-latex-paint/#.U59B-5SwJaY
  • Tedeschi, Bob. "The How-Tos of House Painting." The New York Times. July 13, 2011. (June 17, 2014) http://www.nytimes.com/2011/07/14/garden/the-how-tos-of-house-painting-the-pragmatist.html?pagewanted=all
  • U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. "About lead-based paint." HUD.gov. (June 16, 2014) http://portal.hud.gov/hudportal/HUD?src=/program_offices/healthy_homes/healthyhomes/lead
  • Zimmer, Debbie. "Best paint offer return on investment." Paint Quality Institute. April 2011. (June 16, 2014) http://www.paintquality.com/homeowners/newsletter/archives/april2011.html

UP NEXT

Can I use interior paint for exterior surfaces?

Can I use interior paint for exterior surfaces?

If you love your interior paint, can you use it outside? Get the scoop on the different formulations of interior and exterior paints.


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