9 Essential Questions to Ask Your Painting Contractor Before You Hire Them

Most people place a lot of weight on a building’s appearance which is why we paint our homes when putting them up for sale. This is why it is important to take your time when hiring a painting contractor. The wrong decision may lead to a poorly painted house.

Are you looking to hire a contractor for your next paint project? There are some tips you can use to know whether a painter will do a good job. Read on for 9 questions you should ask any painting contractor before you hire them. 

1. Do You Have General Liability Insurance And Workman’s Compensation Insurance?

Accidents happen and no matter how experienced your painter is, they could still damage your home. Ask your painter if they have general liability insurance and how much it is for. Ensure that it has at least 1 million pounds of coverage, as this should be enough to cover damages to your property. 

The contractor should also have workman’s compensation insurance for their workers. If an employee gets hurt on your property and they do not have proper insurance, you may be liable for damages. So it is your responsibility to check the painter’s documentation and ensure that all employees are insured. 

If the painter is employed, they would under their company’s insurance. But if you are hiring an independent contractor, they should have their own insurance. So make sure that the proof of insurance that contractors provide is theirs.

You can call the agent listed on their insurance certificate to ensure that the cover is valid. Avoid hiring a painting contractor that does not have proof of general liability painter’s insurance. 

2. How Will You Prepare the Property For Painting?

The preparations that go into painting a house are as important as the actual painting. Painters should commit to filling in holes in walls and sanding off old paint. They should also state how many people will work in the preparation process.

Preparation is essential. Have the contractor write out his plan and sign it so that you can ensure that the job is completed as agreed. 

3. What Type Of Paint Do do You Recommend?

Certain brands of paint are lower quality and might not look the best on your building. But some painters may have a financial incentive to sell these brands to get a commission.

Think twice about hiring the paint contractor if they recommend a questionable brand. This means that they lack integrity and they value money over quality.

4. What Do You Consider a Well Painted Surface? 

Before hiring a painter, you should come to an agreement on what a well-done job will look like. You should also agree on what action should be taken if the paint job is not done accordingly.

Actions could include withholding payment or requiring the job to be redone. The Painting and Decoration Association (PDA) provides objective guidelines for what a quality painted surface is. When asked, your paint contractor should give an answer like the PDA’s guidelines.

5. Are You a Member of Any Trade Organizations?

Reputable painter contractors are usually members of trade associations like the PDA. This is important because trade organizations have standards of professionalism that members should meet. Trade organizations also need their members to stay updated on the latest painting techniques and regulations. 

Hiring a painter that is under the authority of any trade organization might result in the likelihood of a high-quality job.

6. How Much Payment Do You Need Upfront?

If a paint contractor asks for a large up-front payment it may show that they don’t have enough capital to start your project. If you make a large upfront payment you also lose leverage to get the painter to finish the job. But the contractor also needs to pay his staff and buy supplies to complete the job so they need a payment to start work. 

Industry insiders recommend making a partial payment after a couple of days’ work. This way the contractor gets compensation for work done. You can also see whether the work is progressing as expected. 

7. How Will You Protect My Property?

Paint can be very damaging to surfaces such as floors, roofs, and even cars. An unprofessional painter will not take proper care to protect your property. To ensure that you hire a contractor that leaves your property as they found it, ask them how they intend to protect your items. 

Professionals use enough tarp to cover all your surfaces. They should also mention extra measures such as moving your car and other moveable properties away from danger areas. Go after painters that have great attention to detail and revamping spaces especially when it comes to preparing your property for a paint project. 

8. How Do You Handle Lead and Dust?

It is now known that lead is poisonous to the human respiratory system. Any homes that were painted with paint from 1978 or earlier contain lead. Any painter that downplays the issue or is uninformed about it may expose his workers and homeowners to hazardous dust. 

You should also ask what type of PPE the contractor provides for workers, as well as how they protect home occupants from dust. At the least, the painter should provide employees with breathing protection and any dust created by sanding should be collected in a filtered vacuum. This will prevent you from getting choked by dust.

9. Can I See Your Recommendations From Previous Clients?

An excellent paint contractor should have 5-star reviews from many previous clients. Check their online page to see what kind of reviews he has received. Additionally, think twice about hiring a paint contractor that lacks an online presence. 

You should contact the references that your painter gives you to ensure that they did a good job as stated. Avoid painters that only have one or two references that you can contact as those may be friends or family.

Vet Your Painting Contractors 

It is important to choose a professional painter for your home or building to get a proper paint job. These 9 questions will go a long way in weeding out unprofessional painting contractor options.

For quality results on your next paint job, contact us today.