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MAIN Arrow to Home ImprovementHouse & Home Arrow to Home RemodelingHome Remodeling Arrow to House Painting House & Room Painting

Color chart, house paint & brushWhether you're getting the guest room ready for the holidays, planning a spring or summer home makeover for every room in the house, or protecting the exterior of your home, help is on the way ...

Before taking on that big paint job, first take advantage of expert advice to help with decisions on flat or glossy, prep and plastering, color and paint quality.

Getting ready to paint

In fact, like most DIY home projects, the more thought you put into preparation - the easier your home paint job will be:

  • Color From the beginning, color is probably the most difficult decision you'll have to face. You'll have to live with it for a while, so make sure the hue, intensity and color temperature (from cool greens to warm ambers to hot reds) not only match the carpet and drapes, but your style and temperament, as well. Also take into consideration that those color charts at the paint supply or hardware store tend to dry a bit darker than they appear.

  • Flat, glossy or semi-gloss? Generally, the rule of thumb is to use flat colors in areas like bedrooms and living rooms. Easy-to-clean glossy finishes are reserved for kitchens, bathrooms, basements or kids play areas. Use semi-gloss for woodwork and trim.

  • Prep & plastering Ideally, larger pieces of furniture should be moved to another room, but if that's not possible use the center of the room and cover all with a sturdy drop cloth. Next, clean all surfaces to be painted, then repair small cracks using premixed wall patches or a drywall repair kit. For larger cracks and holes, use plaster of paris or a premixed plaster repair compound. Next, (you're almost done!) use cheap masking tape to mask any areas you do not wish to paint, like trim or baseboards.

  • Paint Since you want it to last several years or more, make sure the paint you use is top-shelf when it comes to quality. Although less-costly paints are initially easier on the pocketbook, homeowners often end up painting more frequently and spend more money over the long haul using cheaper brands.

also see related Features -> 10 Tips for Working with Contractors

More about house & room painting around the Web:

With the painting basics out of the way, check out the rest of the Web for more tips on buying and using brushes and rollers, how to's on applying textured paints and faux finishes, along with quick cleanup tips and money saving guides for transforming your home with a fresh new coat of color ...

How To Prepare Wood Trim for a Smooth Paint Job - Expert step-by-step instructions for keeping the paint off trim and other surfaces before you begin, from the Family Handy

15 Tips for Choosing Interior Paint Colors - Check out this guide to complimentary colors, using color swatches, color coordination, paint finishes and more.

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