Savings And Investment

6 Easy Ways to Save on Painting Projects

Guest Post by Andrea Davis

Applying a fresh coat of paint is the easiest way to revitalize the look and feel of your home. But the price and labor of a painting update can be intimidating for some homeowners. Here are six ways you can you save time and money on your next painting project.

Tip #1: Check Local Recycling Centers

US News & World Report notes that recycling and hazardous waste centers take in old, unused cans of paint from local residents and businesses. Paint has a long shelf life, so it’s not uncommon to find usable paint at these centers. Best of all, paint from recycling centers is usually free.

Tip #2: Illuminate the Walls

Professional painters often bring their own spotlights and clamp lights to jobs. A clamp light or similar illumination tool will help spot mistakes before the job is done. Addressing mistakes as you go will save you time and money later.

Tip #3: Use a Primer

A primer as your base layer will help your paint adhere to untreated surfaces like raw wood or unfinished drywall. The use of primer is also good if you’re dealing with stained or rough surfaces that might require multiple coats of paint to gain an even finish.

Tip #4: Buy Better Paint

Professional painting services rarely opt for cheap paint, unless specifically directed to do so by the customer. Most cheap paints won’t shine as brightly or look as smooth as higher-quality alternatives. Using lower quality paints will also require multiple coats of paint to achieve a finished look, which can increase costs. Most high-quality paints, including those which feature a primer in the mixture, go on in one coat. They will cost more per can, but completing your job will require less paint.

Tip #5: Don’t Rush to Select a Color

Consider how your color will work with your space before making a purchase. Being sure about your color choice will save you time and money. Rushing into a color selection can result in a touch up or repainting altogether.

Tip #6: Know Your Finishes

Lastly, make sure you pick the right finish for the room. Here are the four major finishes:

  • Flat: Great for interior walls and ceilings.
  • Eggshell: Ideal for living rooms, bedrooms and dining room walls as it is easy to wash and touch up.
  • Satin: The easy-to-clean nature of satin finishes makes it perfect for high-traffic areas of the home.
  • Semi-Gloss/Gloss: Reserve this finish for trim, molding, cabinets, kitchens and bathrooms due to its great coverage and washable, durable nature.

Follow these simple tips and you’ll not only find yourself saving money at the hardware store or with your professional painters, but you’ll also save time by not having to repaint or frequently touch up your newly painted surfaces.

Andrea Davis is the editor at HomeAdvisor, which connects homeowners with home improvement professionals in their area for free. 

5 Steps to Buying Your First Home in Western Massachusetts

The Pioneer Valley is a wonderful place to live! With mountains for hiking, lakes for paddle boarding, great restaurants, nightlight, theatre, museums, and shopping, the towns in Western Massachusetts have New England charm with big city activities.  If you’re thinking about buying a home in Franklin or Hampshire County, a little preparation will go a long way.

1. First and foremost, know your credit score. There is only one official free credit report website according to mass.gov, and that is www.annualcreditreport.com.

How much can you afford? To understand your finances, the importance of credit, how much you’ll need for a down payment and closing costs, mortgage rates, and the Western Massachusetts housing market, check out this website: http://markethttp://myhome.freddiemac.com/buy/what-you-can-afford.html

2. Shop for a loan. Look to commercial banks, mortgage companies, and/or credit unions. This website, http://www.hud.gov/buying/booklet.pdf, will help you shop, compare, and negotiate a mortgage that’s right for you.

If you are a first time home buyer, look into the Federal Housing Administration (FHA). Your down payment may be as low as 3.5% of the purchase price. Get more information here: http://portal.hud.gov/hudportal/HUD?src=/buying/loans

3. Shop for a home. Coldwell Banker is here to help! We’ve been helping people find the home of their dreams for 110 years. Start with our website: www.coldwellbankerUMR.com and search for the home of your dreams, and a Realtor in your community.

When you’re ready to make an offer, your Coldwell Banker Realtor will advise you on negotiation strategies and be there to provide objective advice that protects your best interest in the transaction. Our Realtors work with lenders, home sellers, and other real estate agents every day and will use their knowledge and experience to assist you.

4. After your offer is accepted, get a home inspection, http://portal.hud.gov/hudportal/documents/huddoc?id=92564-cn.pdf and shop for homeowners insurance. Lenders typically require proof of homeowner’s insurance. 

5. The Closing. Your Coldwell Banker Realtor will be there for you every step of the way. Knowing the process before the closing might make you feel a little less nervous. After all, this could be the biggest purchase you’ll ever make. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has resources to help:  http://www.consumerfinance.gov/owning-a-home/process/close/.

 

Pamela Sclafani is the Marketing Manager for Coldwell Banker Upton Massamont. She lives in the Pioneer Valley and enjoys everything it has to offer, gorgeous scenery, hills and mountains for hiking, lakes for paddle boarding, the change of seasons, and the close proximity to Boston and New York.