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How to paint a house

You’ve seen it done. How hard can it be? It’s just paint. Put it on the brush and put on the wall…right? Maybe you have dabbled before and have decided to do a larger project and just need a few hints on how to paint a house. You’ve come to the right place.
Painting can be an enjoyable experience when done properly. Follow these step by step approaches and you should be on your way to painting an entire home in no time!

1. Choosing the Paint

Much like other construction/decorative projects, it helps to have a final visual in mind before even beginning. This is extremely challenging, but must be done. If you paint one room at a time with randomly chosen paints, your house will have no theme and rooms can even clash. Most paint or hardware stores have very helpful hints on how to choose colors now. They have many varieties and shades and even show complimentary colors. Some major retailers even have websites where you can click colors and see it in a room!

2. Preparation

It is assumed that you are working on a finished house. If so, you may be able to begin painting very quickly, but it is always good to look over all the walls and clean them before starting. For most projects, you will need to move furniture, take down pictures, and patch holes/scratches in walls. After everything is removed and all holes filled, you will need to sand the walls. Use harder grain sandpaper for rougher edges and then fine grain to finish off. Using an extension pole with sandpaper on the end is a good way to sand entire lengths of wall to give an even smoothness. Once all sanding is done, the walls and floors will need to be cleaned of dust.

3. Where to Start


The best suggestion for a starter would be to start your painting in a room that will not see much traffic. That way, you can get practice for rooms like a living room where everyone comes and goes. Try a laundry room or closet to begin with. Build confidence and test colors. Use a drop cloth and paint tape where needed, then you are ready to begin. Shake the paint well, stir it, keep a rag on hand, and dip the brush gently into the paint. There is no need to get the entire brush wet. Keep it clean and smooth.

4. Room by Room. Wall by Wall


Begin brushing at one corner. This is often referred to as “cutting in.” As you “cut”, run the brush 2-5 inches from the ceiling, floors/trim, and windows. Do this for the entire length of one wall. Basically, you want to cover all corners with paint before using the roller which cannot reach into tight places. While the paint from cutting is still wet, take a roller, roll it fully covered in paint until it is not dripping and begin rolling from top to bottom across the entire wall. Do not stop halfway up the wall. Use strong, solid motions and move from one cut at the top to the bottom. *If you notice, there may be a line of paint closer to the handle side of the roller. This is where most of the force is being pressed. Lighten up your force, but also keep that side towards the direction you are going so that you pick up this paint as you go and work it evenly into the mixture.

5. Finish the Room


Repeat the process of step 4 for each wall in a room. Make sure to work quickly enough so that paint is still wet as you roll. Don’t rush or you may have accidents that slow you down even more. Move the drop cloth as need and use a ladder to reach the ceiling corners. As you begin the next wall, be mindful of the wall you just finished since you will be tempted to step to the left of your roller and land a shoulder right in the paint. Keep the pressure regular on your roller and finish the first coat with ease. Once that is finished, you can add more coats, but if you have any runs on the first coat, it will show through every coat afterwards. Keep it smooth and you will finish the room. Then, repeat the process room to room and you will have an entire house painted!