A chore most people hate but is one of the most cost effective for keeping your house in good condition is keeping up the outside paint. Paint acts as a sealant for keeping out the 3M’s: mold, mildew and moisture.
This layer of protection keeps wood from rotting and water from getting in that can damage the inside or cause health issues, it even helps protect against insect invasion. By keeping your paint maintained, you can also save yourself thousands of dollars in repairs from having to replace damaged wood.
Now there are ways to help your paint last longer that is easier than painting the home. Keep shrubs and tree limbs cut away from the home so they are not damaging the paint by rubbing or scratching through the coating. Washing the dirt and grime off your home at least once a year (twice is better), will help the paint last longer as well.
You can accomplish this task by using a pressure washer (make sure you don’t use too much pressure or you can damage the paint this way as well) or using a hose with a scrub brush and soap. With proper care, the average outside paint coat will last five to eight years depending on brand and quality.
Speaking of paint quality, buying a good paint is another way to stop having to paint so often. It also holds up better to the weather elements and most work harder to protect your home. Your home is an investment and paint is one of the cheapest ways to protect that investment (it’s also one of the cheapest ways to do a complete home makeover), so purchase quality paints and primers.
Spring and fall are the best times of year to paint the outside of your home for both you and the home. The days are warm without being too hot or cold or too sunny. Direct hot summertime sun will ruin paint as it’s drying, so don’t paint in the summertime. Wintertime in many areas is often too cold unless you live in a mild climate. Paint when it’s comfortable outside so the job is less stressful for your body as well (you can remind yourself that by painting you are giving yourself a great workout).
Two things to do before starting to paint are to clean and prep the surface and to fix any problems such as water damage, chalking, peeling paint, mildew or rust. Walk around the house and examine it closely for any of these issues. If you find them, correct before painting. Apply a new coat of chalk around windows and drains. The paint will cover the chalk and act as more sealant and you probably haven’t applied new since the last time you painted. Wash the home with soap, water and a scrub brush or use a power washer to clean.
Remove any covers, screens, shutters, wall mounted fixtures, mailbox, and street numbers or down spouts that you can. This will make the painting process easier because you don’t have to worry about getting paint on these things. If you can’t remove them, cover them with plastic and painter’s tape. If you’re using a paint sprayer to paint the house, you also want to cover windows and doors with plastic. Finally cover the plantings around the home with a drop cloth to prevent paint from getting on them.
You are now ready to start with paint and primer. Just remember to always use the same kind of paint that is on the home such as latex to latex, oil to oil, etc. so t the paints stick to the last layer. If this is first coat on the home, you need to apply a layer of primer before the paint, don’t skip this step. If it’s a repeat coat, make sure you use primer in any location the paint was scraped through by plants damage, paint scraping or repairs. You can also use the paint/primer combined paints to apply more protection.
Always mix all the paint cans together before painting to ensure a consistent color over the entire home (each batch tends to vary slightly in color). And always get the right tools for the job whether using rollers, brushes and ladders or a paint sprayer. Protect yourself by wearing eye protection and clothing that won’t matter if paint gets on it.
Start your painting after the house is dry in the morning from any moisture or dew from the night before. Start on the side getting the morning sun first and then follow the sun around the home for the day to ensure the best drying and light for working. Always finish a wall, don’t stop in the middle or you will get lap marks. If you need to use a ladder, make sure the ladder is set securely and don’t lean off the sides of the ladder to paint more, move it instead. Finally paint the flat walls first and do the trim last. Once you’ve hit the trim painting, you know you’re in the home stretch and almost done.
Take your time with your outside painting to get it right and it will reward you with years of protection. Go the extra step, keep your paint clean and you’ll get even more life out of it.
The problem with a two-toned room is that it can be a little drab. Yes, you can easily play with the colors to make the whole room appear bigger, but if you are after aesthetic appeal, then two colors will seem safe, plain, and simply uninteresting.
To make a room livelier, cozy, and warm, why not create a red accent wall?
A red accent wall is simply one wall of the room painted red. However, creating a red accent wall is a very bold move since it will contrast loudly with the other colors of the room.
You really have to choose the right shade of red to pull off a beautiful accent wall that emphasizes a room rather than make it gaudy.
Before you paint one wall of the room red though, choose the red shade carefully. Don’t use too bright a red color though; it’ll appear garish. Instead, choose a muted red color, such as brick red, Indian red, or maybe even dark burgundy.
These colors work well with lighter colors such as beige, white, cream, and even gray and taupe colors. You can also try these colors with white and black.
If you’re going to use a red accent wall in the bathroom, it’ll look best with white. The clean, sterile look of white will be balanced by the red wall tiles. The red accent wall will give the bathroom depth and, at the same time, add a focal area in an otherwise stark room.
Pick three shades of red paint samples before you create the red accent wall, and then paint sample squares for each of the three shades on the wall, making sure that you label each square with the name of the paint accordingly. Allow the paint to dry before giving it another coat of paint.
The paint will change after a few days. What started out okay may not look good after a while. This will help you make a good decision when choosing the shade you want for the room, and this will also help you observe the colors in different settings, such as time of the day or in natural or artificial light.
When painting the room, be sure to place drop cloths to protect your floor. You don’t want the paint staining the floor or the carpet. Before you apply the red paint, use a primer first. Some people will tell you that it’s best to use a pink primer, but to be sure though, always ask the paint technician.
Of note; white primer is a big no-no if you’re going for a red accent wall. It’ll only make you spend more money on more red paint to create the effect that you want.
Finally, make sure that you paint the wall twice or thrice. It’ll need at least that much coats of red paint to totally cover the primer and give you the depth you want. Make sure that the paint is thoroughly dry, too, before adding in another coat of paint.
If you’re unsure of your red accent wall, then be sure to get in touch with your local interior designer who can give you the best tips when it comes to accent walls. An accent wall is a very good way to liven up a room; however, if you’re unsure, then always consult with your local interior designer first.