One of the most practical ways to enhance your home’s curb appeal is to give it a fresh, attractive coat of exterior paint. Painting your Indianapolis home can add to its beauty, help protect it from everyday wear and tear, and improve its resale value. And finding a trustworthy, professional painting contractor can make painting your home’s exterior a satisfying experience that has you loving the look of your home.
Of course, it’s important to choose the right painting contractor for your needs—and that means doing a little homework. You’re more likely to receive a great paint job and excellent service from a local painting contractor with expertise and a solid reputation among your neighbors.
What else should you look for as you consider who to hire? Here are 10 questions to help you identify a reputable, skilled painting contractor for your Indianapolis home.
1. What is your area of expertise?
Just because a contractor lists painting under their services doesn’t mean they are experienced in handling your needs. Some painters concentrate on interior paint jobs, while others do only exterior. And some do both. It’s best to choose a painting contractor that regularly performs the type of work you are looking for.
2. What brands and grades of paint will you use?
Different types of paints are made for different needs. Some are specifically for use indoors, others for outdoor painting. There are also different “grades”—or qualities—of paint. Lower grades of paint, such as contractor’s grade, don’t last nearly as long as premium grades, and are much more susceptible to wear and tear.
Brands also matter when it comes to choosing paint for your home. Top premium brands, such as PPG Porter, Benjamin Moore and Sherwin-Williams, may cost more than other brands—but they are preferred by experienced painting contractors because of their high performance, attractiveness, and durability.
3. How will you prepare my house for painting?
The quality of a paint job begins with how well your home is prepped for painting. Issues such as damaged siding, holes in wood, and peeling existing paint must be addressed first. Surfaces must be scraped, sanded, and/or primed—this assures that the surface is ready to hold the paint, and adds to the long-lasting durability of a good paint job.
Ask prospective painting contractors what work they are willing to do to prepare your home’s exterior prior to applying paint. And make sure that the prep work is included in their estimate.
4. What services are included in your estimate?
Receiving a detailed, written estimate is the first place to begin when comparing different painting contractors. But don’t make your choice on cost alone. Keep in mind that one contractor’s price may be higher than another’s because they have covered everything in their estimate, while a lower estimate may cover just the basics like cost of paint. Be sure to ask the contractor exactly what’s included and what extra costs there might be before you commit.
5. How long will the work take to complete, and how big a crew will you send?
The length of your painting job depends greatly on how busy the contractor is and how many painters will be working on your house. So, this is an important question, especially if you want your home painted quickly. A written contract with a timeline and work crew specified can provide you with leverage if your contractor isn’t working as quickly as you agreed to. Keep in mind that foul weather such as rain, snow, and ice can cause necessary delays in completing your exterior paint job.
6. What guarantees or warranties do you offer?
Assuming normal wear and tear, a professional paint job with premium-grade paint should last around ten years before you need to paint again. In addition, find out if the painting contractor offers specific warranties or guarantees—and get the terms in writing.
7. Are you licensed, and do you have insurance?
One way to separate fly-by-night companies from respectable local painting contractors is to find out if they have a license to work in your area. To help protect homeowners, cities and states typically issue a license to contractors who meet certain criteria. If a contractor doesn’t perform as promised in their written contract, their license can be withdrawn.
In addition, a reputable painting contractor will have sufficient insurance. This includes workman’s compensation insurance, which helps protect you if someone is injured while working on your home. Be sure the contractor has full coverage for every employee they have, or you could be held financially liable for the injury.
8. Will there be a written contract?
Another sign of fly-by-night painters is that they don’t offer a written contract. Reputable local painting contractors are much more likely to provide a contract in writing and keep to the contract. And while a written contract can still be broken, it also gives you much more leverage should you need to take legal action.
9. Can you provide me with references?
Always ask for references, preferably three or more to get a sense of what you can expect. Companies that care about providing superior service should be able to give you a list of homes they have recently painted. If the painting contractor is reluctant or unable to provide references, consider that a warning sign.
10. How can I keep in touch with you?
There’s nothing worse than choosing a painting contractor, only to be unable to reach them after the job begins. You deserve a painting contractor who is easy to connect with and responsive. Find out how you can stay in touch—and find out how often they will be updating you on the progress of your painting job.
Schedule a Free Consultation
When you’re ready to beautify your home with fresh, vibrant paint, choose a trusted, local painting contractor like JD Hostetter & Associates. Our experienced painting team takes pride in doing professional exterior painting that is affordable, swift, attractive, and long-lasting. Contact us anytime at (317) 517-7847 or use our online form to schedule a free consultation.