Annette Rosenthal, Real Estate Sales Representative

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Helpful Hints

Brighten up your home with a fresh coat of paint

There's nothing like a fresh coat of paint to help beat the blahs of winter. Painting is a quick, easy and relatively inexpensive way to give your home a face-lift too.

How much of your home is going to be painted will determine whether it's going to be a “do-it-yourself” job or if you need to call in a professional. If you're tackling it yourself,  I suggest the following tips and suggestions.

Choose your colours


If you are thinking of selling your home in the near future, a new paint job can go a long way to make your home more attractive to potential buyers. However, it's wise to stick to lighter, more neutral colours that appeal to a broad range of people and show your home in the best light. If you're planning on staying in your home for a while, go ahead and let your creative side show with your favorite colours. Generally, lighter colours open up a room and reflect more light. Darker, bolder colours can create a dramatic feel and are often perfect for larger spaces. However, don't be afraid to use colour in a smaller space such as a powder room or laundry area. Most paint retailers can match any colour you desire if you bring them a sample.

Latex or oil?

Latex paint dries fast and cleans up easy, but alkyd or oil paint is probably your best bet for kitchens and bathrooms. Visit your local paint store or home improvement centre for advice on the best type of paint for the job you are doing.

Prep time

Although you may want to just dive right in and start rolling on the paint, your job will be so much easier if you take the time to prepare your work area. You won't necessarily need to prime your walls if the existing paint is in good condition, but you do want to make sure all surfaces are free of dust, grease and grime. If the walls are really dirty, you may want to use a mixture of TSP (trisodium phosphate) and water, but in most cases a damp cloth will do.

Repair any cracks or holes in the wall with filler. Apply the filler and let it dry thoroughly before sanding it down and then dust the area before painting. Also, be sure to remove any adhesives. If you have water stains or other difficult stains such as permanent marker on your wall, you may need to use a spot cover (available at hardware stores). Mask off around windows and trim with tape before you begin and protect your furniture and floors with drop cloths.

Gather your tools and equipment

Most household paint jobs require a paint tray or two, rollers, brushes, masking or painter's tape, a ladder and an extension pole. Be sure to protect your furniture and floors with drop sheets and wear old clothing and shoes.

You'll want to ensure you have everything ready before you begin. Also, measure your work area and get enough paint to finish the job. In fact, it's a good idea to have more than enough paint – a little extra for touch ups later on.

Whether it's a room or an entire house, proper planning, the right tools and your imagination will help your paint project run smoothly.

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Save energy this winter
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