Updated: Apr 12, 2022
Painting a room is one of, if not the biggest return on investment (ROI) you can do for your home
When it comes to selling your home, nothing beats a fresh coat of paint to increase its value.
Now if you are planning on staying a while there is nothing wrong with adding your own personality, just remember that when time comes to sell, your paint choice might be dated, tired-looking, or off-putting to home buyers.
In this post I'll share some facts to consider about doing an interior paint job, and give you some handy tips should you decide to tackle the work yourself.
Here are some facts to consider:
In our market, paint offers a recovery rate of 50% to 100%
(Source: CAA Quebec)
Here's what the folks at Remax had to say:
Painting is the most under-appreciated home improvement. Nothing provides a higher ROI than quality, professionally done painting. When putting your home on the market, consider a professional painter who can help select the right color palette, skim the walls, seal trim and repair minor damage before applying top quality paint that’s appropriate for each surface. (Source: REMAX)
I typically recommend these paint types:
Eggshell for walls
Semi-gloss for trims and doors
Proper matte ceiling paint
Tip: the glossier you go, the more imperfections will show as the light catches on them. So be sure to have a smooth, repaired surface before you begin. More helpful tips below if you plan to do the work yourself.
By the Numbers: Budget for an entire 2,000-sq.-ft. home: approximately $10,000-$15,000. For a specific room estimate, I'm happy to provide one - just shoot me a message using the contact page.
If you plan to tackle the work yourself, here is some info that can help you.
Before You Begin:
Determine your neutral color scheme
Just say no to wacky or dramatic trends, as they will come and go. A hard reality to face, assuming you're selling, is that the home you've lived in and loved for years, where your precious memories were created, is no longer going to be yours.
It's helpful to remember this when you're overwhelmed with choices or when you find yourself redecorating to your personal taste. Don't get me wrong you may have a great eye for style, just keep in mind that you are trying to display the house's best assets, not your personality.
There are a number of factors to consider when choosing a color scheme, from how much natural light the home gets to how a space relates to the other areas around it (for example closed rooms vs. an open floor plan). As always, I'm happy to discuss these matters with you and help you figure out the best solution.
Some neutrals to consider:
Warm whites and off-whites
Beige, sand, champagne
Crisp white trim
Go for quality paint
I suggest going to a paint specialty store, I like using Benjamin Moore but the choice is yours. Good quality paint makes all the difference. It goes on smoother and has better coverage, which reduces work time. It makes the work easier, faster and more enjoyable (YES it can be fun!).
Oh and DON'T use 5 year-old paint! Lesson learned the hard way... To be fair, if well kept, paint can be reused years later just test it before. If you want to learn how to store your paint long term then just ask me!
Don't skip any steps in your prep
Patch your walls, fill nail holes, caulk all your seams, sand to a smooth finish and clean the walls before you paint! Painting is a finishing project, meaning if your walls are not prepped properly, any and all defects will show.
The prep work is time-consuming but well worth it.
Ideally, empty the room of furniture and personal effects
Clean your walls. Depending how bad they are, you can use something like TSP and water
Remove any screw hangers (a good trick is to use a screwdriver and hammer to push them into the walls. Less damage to the wall than pulling it out)
Fill holes in walls, baseboards, window casings and any crown and base trim in the room.
Use painters caulk to seal the seams between all trim and walls
Protect your floors with dropcloths (tip: dropcloths made for painters are preferred to old bed sheets, for example, since paint can still seep through the bedsheet onto your floors)
Plan to paint everything that needs to be refreshed - Walls, trim, doors, ceiling
If possible, try to re-paint everything in the room. In reality, fresh paint on the walls will likely end up making your tired old window frames more noticeable. Old grimy window trim and stained, nicked baseboards really stand out and nothing beats walking in a freshly painted room, that's bright and clean and the trim work pops! Obviously if the ceiling or anything else is in really good shape then leave it as is.
Here is the order I like to paint in:
Ceiling first (it's easier to cut a straight line on the wall than on the ceiling). When painting the edge don't be afraid to paint on the wall as well. That's how you get a crisp transition.
Trim, doors and window casings. Same thing here, go ahead and paint on the wall -- it will be covered with wall paint later. If you have crown mould, paint them along with the rest of the trim, however tape your ceiling before. It's very hard to run a straight line on the small edge of the moulding.
And finally, walls. They are plenty of videos online on how to cut lines freehand but if you feel unsure, taping is the way to go.
Tip: Make sure you get premium painters tape however, like Frog Tape. Cheap store tape or even regular blue paint tape tends to bleed, meaning the paint WILL make its way behind and make a mess of your seams.
Take your time!
After all that work it would be a shame to waste it all on sloppy work. A bad paint job can be spotted from a mile away. Doing it right takes quite a bit of time and requires some decent equipment. If you're looking for a someone to look after the work for you, then you know how to reach me :)
There you have it! Enjoy your handy work and plot out your next home improvement.
New before + after shots added regularly -- follow along!