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Painting Tips

When it comes time to sell your home, it can pay to touch up the painting. The added perceived value of a properly maintained home is well documented, and there’s no easier (or economical) way to give the impression than with some fresh paint.

So, what should a home seller paint? Following is a list of 10 top touchups, according to experts at the Paint Quality Institute — headquartered in the aptly named Pennsylvania town of “Spring House”. . . really.


1. If you want buyers to come rushing to your door, make sure the door is well painted. A fresh coat of paint here will make a great first impression.

2. Next up is the entrance hall, where prospects get their initial glimpse of the interior. At the very least, clean every surface and touch up areas where the paint shows marks or nicks. Better yet: Put on a fresh coat of neutral-colored paint throughout.

3. Bathrooms and kitchens get special scrutiny from prospective buyers, so give extra attention to these rooms. Touch up as needed and put plenty of effort into the powder room, which many will visit during their tour of your home.

4. Size does matter when it comes to the kitchen. If you want to make yours look bigger, then paint the kitchen white or off-white. At the very least, remove food stains from the walls and conceal water spots by applying a coat of primer followed by some touchup paint.

5. Look at your windowsills, especially if your view is special. Prospects will likely spend time gazing out. Don’t spoil the moment. Sand, prime, and paint the most important sills as needed.

6. Check your woodwork. You can quickly touch up chipped or marred paint on chair rails and floor molding.

7. Inspect areas that come in frequent contact with soiled hands – especially window frames, door frames, edges of doors, and walls around light switches. If the areas are dirty, you may be able to clean them, assuming you used a glossier paint; if that doesn’t work, then do touchup painting.

8. Same approach with cabinet doors: Scrub clean of fingerprints, if possible, or touch up painted areas. Pay special attention to the kitchen, which should be spotless.

9. Water stains on the ceiling from old roof leaks are a huge red flag for prospective buyers. After making certain that your roof is sound, be sure to prime and re-paint these potential “deal-breakers”.

10. Put the finishing touches on your home by scrutinizing every remaining wall and painted surface, looking for stray flecks of paint, as well marks and stains from whatever source. Conceal them with some touchup paint, and your home will be good to go. . .and show!
The Paint Quality Institute advises that this list of touchups isn’t just for home sellers, it’s also a handy checklist if you’re staying put. And springtime is a great time to tackle these minor projects, when the days are longer and you can throw open the windows for a burst of fresh air.

~Courtesy of the Paint Quality Institute:

Sometimes you want to change the wood paneling in your home. Maybe your style has changed, it doesn’t look right with new furnishings, or you want to paint the walls as part of a remodeling or redecorating project. No matter your reason for wanting a change, painting wood paneling can seem daunting.

  •   Preparation is the key to this process. Clean the walls very thoroughly, making sure that any stains have been completely removed with the appropriate cleaner, and that the walls are all free of dust and dirt. Next, putty any nail holes or imperfections and, once dry, sand until it’s flush.
  •   Next you want to sand the paneling itself, just enough to take the sheen off the finish and rough up the surface so paint will adhere better. Don’t forget to sand other wood trim in the room and then go over it all with a clean, damp cloth to get rid of any leftover sanding particles.
  •   Caulk any cracks or gaps between the paneling and other elements in the room, such as doors or windows.
  •   Now you can go back to your normal paint prep routine—protect your floor by covering it with drop cloths, and use painter’s tape on areas it’s needed.
  •   Using a medium nap roller cover, prime the paneling with a stain-blocking primer. You may want to have the primer tinted so that it looks similar to the color you’ve chosen for the topcoat. Once the primer has completely dried, you can paint your topcoat, probably needing two coats of Miller Paint.
  •   Last up is applying primer and then painting the trim in the room.


Traditional Hall by Aiken Architects & Designers A. Tate Hilliard, Architect/Builder

Traditional Hall by Aiken Architects & Designers A. Tate Hilliard, Architect/Builder


When you’re ready for a change but the room has wood paneling, not to worry. Follow the steps above, seek out advice when necessary, and your paneled room will feel new and fresh in no time.



~This post inspired/contributed by ColorGuild. ColorGuild, the global paint and color authority, is a member based organization serves as a definitive resource on color and coatings.  As a member of ColorGuild, we welcome their contributions.