Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Should You Hire a Pro or Paint Yourself?

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Should You Hire a Pro or Paint Yourself?

Article excerpt

It's hard to escape the commercials. In just 30 seconds, two average homeowners pick a shade, move some furniture, pull out the rollers and, voila, a new room!

Painting a room isn't as easy as it looks on TV. Any painter worth his brush will tell you that there are a lot of factors that come together to make a worthy paint job, like prep work for instance. They also will tell you which jobs homeowners can tackle on their own and which ones are best left to the pros.

Perry Nesselroad of ImageWorks Painting thinks that the main factors homeowners should consider in making the DIY vs. professional decision are the money savings, available time and the variance in the quality of the job.

"Most people in today's society struggle to find the time to fulfill family obligations." He points out that a good experienced painter could take five to six hours to a couple of days to complete a room, depending on the amount of prep work, walls, trim, windows and doors that need to be finished.

"Homeowners need to ask themselves what is more valuable -- spending a few weekends of your time painting or the cost of having a reputable painter complete it for you."

Exterior painting is much more involved and carries more risks. Harsh weather, working on ladders, setting up scaffolding and dealing with the old lead-based paints that are common on older homes are all causes for alarm.

Brian Mohring of Kosta Contactors said that he and his partner specialize in exterior paint, spending about 70 percent of their time working on grand old houses in the East End.

"I tell all our customers upon meeting them, 'If you just want us to slap on a quick coat of paint, we are not the company for you.' " He points out that a good exterior painter must protect your landscape, know what products to apply on the surfaces and substrates (i.e wood, vinyl siding), and follow the proper lead abatement removal and disposal procedures outlined by the EPA and local authorities. …

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