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How do I choose a painter for my house – is my friend’s recommendation any good?

This is the second article in our series on choosing a painter for your job. You can read the first post here (it’s about comparing quotes).

As with anything in life, there’s nothing better than being able to use a friend’s recommendation when looking for a service provider of any description. The only problem with doing this is that a fresh coat of paint done by pretty much anyone will always look great to the naked eye. It is only later down the track that you find out a paint job hasn’t been done properly.

We recently became aware of a “painter” who worked on some new plaster walls and failed to seal them. One coat and no sealer looked ok to the naked, untrained eye. Some weeks after the job had been finished the client knocked one of the walls, and to their shock, off came the paint and the plaster. The client called in a Master Painter to check the walls and when the Master Painter rubbed his hands over the walls, off came the paint and the plaster.

As much as we love our friends and neighbours, experience has taught us that they don’t know a good painter from a bad one. They tend to form their opinion on price (cheap is good!), appearance and whether the house looks clean when they have finished. While the last point is important, it really isn’t the way to determine a good painter.

Professional Painter

The wrong way to save money on a paint job

Often a cheap price means the use of low grade paint and products in your home. As we mentioned before, freshly done, the low grade paint and products will look great. It will only be down the track after your walls are subjected to everyday wear and tear that you will see the difference and wish you’d paid a bit more.

Good quality paints cost more but are worth it.

The right way to save money on a paint job

Try purchasing the paint yourself. You can then ask your painter to quote you for the labour portion of the job separately. They will also be able to tell you how much paint you will need and any other products you will need to have the job completed properly

The other advantage of this is that the “paint store” will track your purchase history – most painters won’t do that for you.