Interior Painting Part 1: Planning and Prep Before the Coats

Painting the interior of the house needs to be done more often than exterior painting. Some spaces are painted on average once every two to three years, while others average once every seven. The easiest way to obtain a skilled, professional paint job is to hire a contractor.


When is it time to repaint?

Home interiors don’t need to withstand the same wear and tear as the outside of a home. However, the brushes and rollers come out more frequently indoors.
 
A home interior may not withstand the elements, but homeowners have to live among those colors and maintain a higher standard of cleanliness indoors than out. The look and feel of a room’s walls has an effect on anyone living in it. Painting the interior of a home is also more practical than an exterior paint, as projects can be room-by-room or all at once.
 
What is important to consider when scheduling interior painting?

 
Spaces with high daytime traffic, like hallways and living rooms, will often be the hardest to rope off to paint. Vacating a room, moving furniture and watching the paint dry can be an inconvenience, and so taking advantage of a week where fewer people are in the house (or right after a move) is ideal.
 
Times of the year when homeowners spend more time at home are helpful “due dates” to bear in mind. If there will be visitors over the holidays, or if the kids will be at home all day for a week during a break, painting key rooms before then can be an item checked off the list in advance. These rooms can be that much more inviting—and photogenic—for a special event.
 
The first step: looking around a space and identifying needs and challenges.
 
The timeframe and budget to paint a room start with the square footage. Measurements for a room are taken preliminarily, and then windows and doors are subtracted as non-painted surfaces. The decision to paint the doors or not should be discussed during the initial consultation.
 
Ceilings have special considerations depending on their structure. In many cases, they might go unpainted for longer periods of time. Walls are cleaned much more often than ceilings, however, and so an argument can be made to take advantage of scheduling a job to get the entire room refreshed.
 
The structure of a ceiling will inform what paint colors or patterns will look attractive in the space. The painting of ceilings is desirable, regardless of whether they’re smoothly finished or textured, and whether they include beams or tray ceilings, are vaulted or coffered.
 
Homeowners can come prepared to a consultation with square footage. Details about existing paint, ceilings and trim will also be important to get an accurate quote. When it comes to the paint solvents, sheet plastic and other accessories for the actual job, that’s where the contractor comes in.
 


After planning and scheduling, prepping the space is next.
 
Hangings need to come off the walls, and furniture removed. Unless the area is vast, even storing furniture in the center of the room under sheet plastic can get in the way of painters doing their job. They will need space in the room for staging supplies, too.
 
Once the walls have been cleared, cleaning is the next step. Thoroughly washing the walls is an opportunity to examine any issues in the wall itself. Paint will stick better to clean walls than to a surface covered in fingerprints and dirt.
 
The contractor can also discuss with a homeowner what types of paint have been used in the past, especially if any deeper layers used lead-based paint. The manufacture of lead paint was banned in the U.S. in 1978 by the Environmental Protection Agency, but many older houses might have layers of lead-based beneath newer coats.

If you want to take advantage of our painting expertise, whether it's part of a remodel or not, give us a call.