Tips for Apartment Painters
When it comes to residential painting contracts, apartments are highly desirable because they have significantly more square feet than the average house. More space means longer work time and, consequently, more earnings.
However, the difference between painting a home and an apartment isn’t only a matter of scale; apartment gigs come with their own unique set of challenges.
In addition to patience and effort, apartment painters must have specialized knowledge, including time-tested apartment paint ideas and techniques. This article contains apartment painting tips from paint contractors with many years of professional experience in this area. Read on to learn how to do apartment painting the right way.
Make the Right Bid
The pre-painting phase can be even more difficult than painting itself—at least mentally—especially since there are so many variables to consider when it comes to bidding. You need to scout the jobsite, estimate the amount of materials you will need for the job, decide whether to use your own crew or hire subcontractors, determine your profit margin, etc.
Bidding for a single home project is hard enough. With apartments, it gets even more complicated.
Apartments consist of multiple units, and each unit contains many rooms, including bedrooms, bathrooms, kitchens, and so on. Not all units are alike, either; there are usually multiple floorplans for depending on the square footage and layout of each space.
Be prepared to spend a good chunk of your time investigating the site if you want to come up with a fair bid.
The good news is that apartments tend to have very uniform design throughout, so you may only need to invest in one or two shades of paint in addition to priming and other materials. Also, units containing the same amount of rooms tend to share the same floorplan so once you’ve got each floorplan figured out, you can streamline the process.
Always Paint a Test Patch
You’ve successfully bid for an apartment painting gig, and now you’re faced with a huge project. With so much area to cover, you might be tempted to start slapping paint all over the walls immediately and quickly. There is a big problem with this approach.
Paint colors can be deceiving at first glance. For instance, paint that appears to be a nice taupe color in the daylight can render your walls flesh-colored when the sun goes down and the lights are turned on.
Lighting changes everything, and it’s important to find a shade that works, no matter what time of the day it is.
Always test a paint before you start applying it. Bring samples and examine them under the various light sources and fixtures in the apartment. Look at how the colors turn out in different rooms throughout the day, with the artificial lights both on and off. By doing this, you will save significantly on painting costs and retain a healthy profit margin.
A Smart Start Will Give You a Strong Finish
Always suit up for every job and assemble your tools in an orderly fashion. Start with ceilings first as they are almost always the most physically challenging part of the job. Keep your paint container three-quarters full; it should feel balanced in your hand as you walk around the room and up and down ladders. Use brushes where detail is required, but speed things up with rollers when you can.
You’re in this for the long haul.
Perhaps the most important tip is to always give yourself a lot more time than you think you’ll need. It cannot be emphasized enough that painting is long, hard, and unpredictable—and the unpredictability factor increases with project size.
Damages in walls, textures in ceilings, and other unforeseen circumstances can easily add hours, days, or even weeks to your total worktime. It’s a better look for your business if you overestimate at the beginning rather than miss a deadline later on.
If you’re just getting started in the apartment painting business and want to build leads, research housing developments online or, better yet, walk or drive around the neighborhood and see what’s being constructed. If you spot an apartment in construction, find out who the owners are and reach out to them directly offering your apartment painting services.
To give yourself an edge over the competition, don’t become just a painter, but develop the knowledge and skills to become an effective consultant.
Know what the latest local trends in apartment design are, and make suggestions for paint shades. The goal of every apartment owner is to rent out as many units as they can, and if you can help them do that, they won’t hesitate to hire you.