House-Painting Tips for New Homeowners

Latinos accounted for 51% of the total net increase in homeownership last year.  For many, it is our first home and the fulfillment of the American dream. However, once we get those keys in our hands the true journey is just beginning.  A home requires a lot of TLC in terms of maintenance and upkeep to stay in tip-top shape.

Each season not only brings changes in weather and topography, but also a new home maintenance to-do list. With Spring having finally arrived, homeowners from coast to coast are determining what they need to do around their homes this season. Many will plant flower and clean the patio are in preparation for the outdoor fiestas to come. However, Casa Latina recommends also tackling at least on major home-improvement project per season.

When was the last time your house was painted? Maintaining the exterior of your home is essential.  You can hire a professional service or tackle the project on your own by following these simple steps:

Inspection

The first thing to do is inspect your house for water damage. If water damage isn’t fixed, the paint job won’t last, and damage will continue to eat away at the house. As you look at your home, have a hammer nearby to pound in any nails that may be up, and be ready to fill in holes as needed. Sometimes water damage can be fixed by caulking areas that water can penetrate, but sometimes boards need to be replaced. But no matter what needs to be done, it will be worth the effort. Scaffolding is useful here, and you can find rental scaffolding at various equipment rental companies.

Cleaning, Scraping and Sanding

This should be done unless the house is older and there are intricate designs in the wood that couldn’t be replaced if damaged. If your house is older, than the wood may not stand up to power washing. In that case, those areas that have older wood and/or intricate designs will need to be scraped and sanded by hand. This is detail work that won’t be fun, but if you don’t take the time to scrape and sand, then these great looking designs are likely to be the first places on the house that will peel and flake.

Primer

The next step is to apply a white, gray or tinted primer. Primer allows the paint to adhere evenly to the house, and tinted primer will often let you use less paint. It’s also an extra layer of attention.; skipping the primer means that parts of your house may fade differently as time passes.

Exterior Painting Strategies

When you paint, don’t scrimp on materials. For clapboard homes, you will probably need a synthetic bristle, a 4-inch paint brush and a round foam-rolling edger to paint under each of the boards. Sometimes the clapboards are big enough that a regular roller will work efficiently. It’s usually best to paint in areas where the sun has already passed — the sun will further dry and warm the surface, making the paint adhere better.

Start at the top and work down. Keep a scraper with you so you can fix any spots that you may have missed when you were prepping the house. Also keep a paint rag, a hammer to pound in nails that may be sticking up.

A freshly painted home is not only beautiful, but it creates a great feeling of accomplishment. Let the family fiestas begin!

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