How many coats on what?

nancitaJuly 5, 2012

Hi all,

We've had five estimates for painting the interior of our home. The upstairs is brand new plaster walls with pre-primed trim and doors. The first floor is just a freshen-up.

The first, and lowest, estimate was primer everywhere, one coat paint on ceiling and closet walls, two coats on everything else. Is that acceptable? The three closets will have closet mades.

The last painter said he could match the estimate if he only did the above and was able to come in before the finished floor was down to spray the primer and first coat on everything. He would still guarantee the work. This was for the second floor.


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Christopher Nelson Wallcovering and Painting

No need to prime the downstairs if it is already painted

    Bookmark   July 6, 2012 at 6:01AM
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We have been doing the painting ourselves on our new second floor. 1 coat of primer, which the newly plastered walls soaked up a TON of. 2 coats of the final color on the walls. 2-3 coats on the trim, depending on how much sanding I had to do in between coats. 2 is usually enough, but I had one door casing that got bumped while drying, so I basically sanded off a coat to get it smooth again.

Just curious, how much are the estimates? Oh - and does it include sanding the walls and patching/caulking the nail holes & gaps in the trim? Even a great finish carpenter will have little gaps between the casing and wall sometimes, if you don't use latex caulk to seal that before painting it won't look as good. And the nail holes have to be puttied & sanded. The walls won't need much work before painting but you probably still want to run your hands over them to feel for any bumps or blips that the plasterers left. its often easier to feel them than see them on virgin plaster.

    Bookmark   July 6, 2012 at 7:56AM
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The cheapest estimate for one coat primer, one coat white paint on ceilings and closet walls and two coats on everything was $7500. I thought that was a lot so I got four other estimates, all of which were in the $9000 an$10,000 range for two coats on everything.
The painter I will probably go with gave me a quote of 9200. When I told him about the $7500, he said he could do the job for the $7500 if he could spray paint the primer and do the one coat in closets and ceilings too.
I must say I was shocked to find out the cost of painting.
The contractor is oing the caulkng of trim and the plaster guy is SUPPOSED to come bac to fix a few spots.

    Bookmark   July 6, 2012 at 1:53PM
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I am changing the color of the first floor walls. They are light and I am changing them another light color. The kitchen will get s skim coat because it has a bad area. Primer?

    Bookmark   July 6, 2012 at 1:57PM
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Are you really going to pick the winner by who is the cheapest? I thought those days were long gone, or at least they should be.
Watch putting anything over fresh plaster, and if none of the painters has spoken or asked about that, there is a reason NOT to go by price.

    Bookmark   July 7, 2012 at 1:21PM
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Well, If it makes you feel any better we were quoted $8k for our second floor. And that's why we are doing it.

It is not a job for the faint of heart. I figured out that it takes me about 20-25 min to scuff sand, tack off, and paint one side of our doors. We have 9 doors (3 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, 1 linen closet). Each door needs at least 3 coats, which means 1 hour for each side of the doors or 18 hours on JUST doors. These are pre-primed, too, so the first pass is just touching up the primer after a good sanding and vacuuming.

Add in door and window casing, the baseboards (not pre primed), and everything else and it is a TON of work. I'm starting to understand why they want $8k. But ... That will buy new windows for the first floor so I keep painting. I'm taking a break from those damned doors right now, in fact.

We have spent a chunk of money on painting so far, even though we had some tools:
8 gallons of paint @$42 each
2 Five gallon buckets of primer @$75 each
Roller covers, tray liners at $15 total
Good brushes (Purdy) for $50 (roughly)
A power roller to replace the old one that died $90
A good extension pole that clicks at different lengths instead of screwing tight (and then unscrewing when you use it) $30

All total, I expect to spend about $1000+ in supplies. Some stuff is reusable, lots isn't. And I expect we will need more paint before we are done, too, so,add another couple gallons to that first line item.

This is a really long way of saying ... If you can afford to hire someone to paint, then do it. If we didn't need windows so badly I would not be doing this now :)

    Bookmark   July 7, 2012 at 3:24PM
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Lori A. Sawaya

. . . and that is why I absolutely loathe the phrase "it's just paint".

It's not just paint.

    Bookmark   July 7, 2012 at 4:02PM
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Brushworks Spectacular Finishes

I must say I was shocked to find out the cost of painting.

Painters have families to support too. :)

    Bookmark   July 8, 2012 at 7:47PM
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Christopher Nelson Wallcovering and Painting

must say I was shocked to find out the cost of painting.
Painters have families to support too. :)
Yes they do!

Have you had an estimate for a new roof, had a plumber in, electrician, carpenter? All would put the painters price to shame.

    Bookmark   July 9, 2012 at 5:19AM
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