Nothing transforms a home quite like a fresh coat of paint. In fact, painting your own house is one of the smartest and easiest DIY upgrades a homeowner can accomplish, especially as they find themselves spending more time at home. With 71% of homeowners undertaking improvement or renovation projects that include paint, according to an iProperty Management Study, here are surefire tips to ensure you are painting like a pro.
- Clean your canvas - Paint adheres better to a smooth, clean surface. While living room walls may only need a dry dusting, kitchens and bathrooms, where dirt, grease, oil or mildew can build up, need extra attention. Wash surfaces with soap and water, rinse well and allow to dry completely. For bathrooms, remove mold and mildew by applying a solution of one part bleach to three parts water and allow the solution to sit for 20 minutes. Then scrub mold and mildew with a soft-bristle brush, rinse the surface and allow it to dry. Be sure to wear safety glasses and rubber gloves when working with this bleach and water solution. For surfaces that are particularly grimy, spray with Rust-Oleum® Original Krud Kutter Cleaner & Degreaser, wipe off with a clean cloth and allow to dry.
- Ensure a smooth surface - Now that the surface is dry, smooth down any uneven or rough surfaces with a bit of fine-grit sandpaper. Another pro tip is to shine a bright light at a low angle across the surface to spot any problem areas. After you have sanded or scraped the area, wipe it down with a damp cloth to remove any dust or residue and allow to dry.
- Don't forget the details - Anyone can paint over a wide, smooth surface, but it's the attention to detail around windows and doors that truly gives a job that professional look. Start by removing any loose or cracked caulking from windows, doors and trim, and apply a fresh bead of sealant for a smooth, sealed surface. Next, use painter's tape to protect windowsills, molding, baseboards, door hinges and the ceiling perimeter, taking your time to ensure that all areas are properly covered.
- Fill in imperfections - Now it's time to tackle the main surface. Cracks, holes and dents will mar the finished project, so apply spackling to fill in these areas. Open a container of pre-mixed spackling compound and apply a small amount over the damage with a flexible putty knife. Spread the compound over the hole or crack in a smooth, downward motion. Overfill slightly and sand smooth using fine-grit sandpaper.
- Paint with precision - Make the job go easier and faster by having a variety of brushes and rollers on hand. Rollers are great for covering large, wide surfaces, but for a professional look around edges and corners, you'll need smaller brushes for the right amount of detailed work. Allow the first coat of paint to completely dry, and then apply a second coat to ensure smooth, even coverage. Once the second coat is dry, carefully pull up any painter's tape and voila! Your space is transformed!