(BPT) - When it comes to simple, low-cost home improvements that can add value and completely change the look of a room, you just can't beat painting. From giving a room a whole new look to protecting the walls and boosting the value of your home, painting delivers many benefits - all at a fraction of the cost of other improvements.
Tackle the job yourself, rather than hiring a professional painter, and you can save even more money.
"Any do-it-yourselfer can achieve professional-looking painting results when they follow the right steps and use the right painting tools," says Arti Lyde, a product director with Wagner, manufacturer of painting products. "Painting can dramatically improve the look and style of your home."
Follow these four guidelines and you can achieve professional-looking results with your own hands:
Prepping is paramount
Professionals know that properly preparing their work space is a key factor in achieving a good end result. Before you crack open that paint can, take these preparatory steps:
* Gather all the tools you will need in one place.
* Protect surfaces such as baseboards, woodwork and windows by taping off with a good quality painter's tape.
* Completely cover carpets with a good quality drop cloth that will resist punctures and rips.
* Some jobs require a primer before putting the final color on the wall. Primer preps the surface and helps the final coat adhere better.
Pick the right paint
The quality of the paint you choose will directly affect how good the job looks when you're done. For a good quality finish it is important to select quality paint, which adheres better, gives a uniform finish and will last longer. Also, look at the latest color trends and select a color that will meet your style.
Before you buy, research the brands available at your local home improvement store. Check out consumer review websites, giving particular attention to those that feature reviews from homeowners who've actually used the products. These independent, real-life reviewers can offer valuable insight into how well a paint might work.
Use the right tools
Many professionals use paint sprayers to achieve smooth, fast results. Now homeowners can achieve professional results. Two new sprayers, the Flexio 570 and Flexio 590 from Wagner, are designed to help DIYers achieve the same speed and good looks as the professionals do. The sprayers allow you to cover an 8-by-10-foot surface in just two to six minutes, and they can be used inside the house or outside on decks, fences, sheds or any other surface you need to paint quickly and easily.
Because both sprayers feature nozzles that allow you to precisely adjust the flow of paint, overspray is minimal - meaning that since you've already prepped by taping and draping, you can use the sprayer indoors with confidence that you won't get overspray on areas where you don't want paint. Another bonus that makes these sprayers great for indoor use - they're quieter than traditional sprayers, making about as much noise as a hair dryer. Finally, unlike other sprayers, the Flexio models don't require you to thin the paint with water; thinning can hinder the performance of even the best quality paint. To learn more, log on to www.wagnerspraytech.com.
Pay attention to the details
Details such as painting baseboards, woodwork and ceilings are the crowning touch on any paint job. Professionals know it's these finishing touches that pull together the look of a room.
With the right tools and professional approach, you can save money by doing your own painting - and enjoy the pride and satisfaction of a job well done.