Selecting the Right Top Coat for House Painting Projects

A visit to the home center or paint supplier may be confusing. There are scores of paint types, methods of application, and special effects to select from. The following suggestions will help you sort out the confusion:

Choose a high quality latex primer and top coat. That means you'll spend $30 to $45 per gallon. Top quality paint applies better, lasts longer, and looks better compared to cheap discount paint. Consider it an investment in your home's value.

Gloss and semi-gloss paints are more stain-resistant and washable, but highlight any wall problems. Flat paints are excellent for living and dining rooms. Eggshell gloss is a nice all-around finish for hallways, kids' rooms, kitchens, and bathrooms. 

• Some professionals feel flat paint is the best way to go for ceilings, others love a bright white gloss that reflects more light into the room. If your home tends to be on the dark side, gloss ceilings reflect more light and makes the room appear larger.
• Plan on two top coats for the best looking job and figure on about 400 square feet per gallon. Also, be sure you have about a half gallon left over for touch-ups.
• If you live in a dry climate, you might want to put in an additive to slow down drying time and make the paint more workable. Adding a few ounces per gallon of Floetrol or another similar additive can make the jobgo easier.

Go over those mildew-inhibiting paints if you live in a humid area, and also for baths, kitchens, and laundry rooms. These paints will not kill mildew that's already present, but they'll keep mildew from forming later on.

When you've decided on the paint system, the following step is to decide on the colors and tints. For a few homeowners this is the project's fun part, for others it's divorce material. Fortunately, there are six shortcuts that will help you decide:
1. Take your time and look into builder's open houses to get ideas of what's currently voguish in your area.
2. Consider color schemes in home magazines and check out some helpful websites
3. Gather up paint chips of colors you like and narrow it down to those that you believe will go with your home's other colors.
4. Keep in mind that color choice should take into consideration your home's architecture, ceiling height, and exterior and interior colors.
5. When you have narrowed it down to three or four colors, get pint samples from the paint store and roll four foot swaths on one of the walls you are planning on painting. Live with it for a few days and see which color grabs you.
6. Don't be afraid of making a big mistake. What's the worst that can happen? You could always repaint!

© 2012 Tip Writer