Here are 10 tips we found on FamilyHandyMan.com to make your painting projects go smoother and faster while giving you a professional-looking finish that you’ll be proud of. You’ll also find ingenious tips that can cut your cleanup time in half and extend the life of your paint brushes.

Tip 1: To avoid lap marks, roll the full height of the wall and keep a wet edge
Tip 2: Mix several cans of paint in a large bucket for a consistent color throughout the room
Tip 3: Let the paint dry, then cut the tape loose for a perfect edge
Tip 4: Paint the trim first, then the ceiling and walls
Tip 5: Prime and texture wall patches to avoid a blotchy finish
Tip 6: Clean dirty surfaces so the paint can form a strong bond
Tip 7: Roll paint along the edges for consistent texture
Tip 8: Use cotton drop cloths rather than plastic
Tip 9: Feather out paint where you can’t keep a wet edge
Tip 10: Sand trim between coats for an ultra-smooth finish

When you are preparing a house for paint there are numerous things you need to do ahead of time. If you are a novice at this then these tips may be helpful, but it is recommended to hire a professional if quality is important to you.

First of all you need to scrape the old paint off because it tends to lift over time and the surface must be clean and dry, free from grease, oils and flaking or loose paint. With most paints you also need to prep the walls with primer.

The nest thing to do is remove anything around the exterior walls that may get stepped on or ruined by paint dripping on it. Turn off any power to exterior appliance like a BBQ or anything like it. Then go around and remove anything you don’t want painted such as the mail box, light fixtures, shutters and decorations.

Patch Work

If there is anything needing putty or possibly a new board somewhere, now is the time for those types of repairs. If you have a power washer and know how to use it then this is a handy tool for removing loose paint. If you have no experience with this type of tool it can actually ruin the exterior surface, so be careful. If you do use a power washer then you will have to wait until the walls are dry before scraping and sanding.

Final Preparations

Once you are down to the surface you want then you need to feather any roughness out with finer sandpaper. Before sanding, fill any cracks and let it dry before proceeding. After all the finer sanding is done, wash the house once again to remove the dust. Go around the house once again and remove the window screens, storm doors, storm windows and anything else that should not get painted. Once you are satisfied that the old pain is gone and the house is clean and grease free, let it dry. Too much moisture under new paint will ruin the job, so make use it is completely dry before proceeding.

If this seems like too much work then we recommend you find a good house painting contractor with references.