Benefits of Painting Your Home By Hand

A homeowner working on window trim with a paint brush.

With so many technological advances in home improvement, painting a home by hand may seem like an archaic art. You’ve got pneumatic paint sprayers with auto feeds that can practically paint the house by themselves, but are they worth it? There is no doubt that spray painting saves time, but there are many benefits to painting your home by hand.

Details, Details, Details

A paint sprayer can cover a huge swath of the house with a single pass, but when it comes to detail work, don’t count on a sprayer for help. Edges, borders and other fine and delicate work still need to be done by hand. This keeps the paint from hitting the trim and other areas that you don’t want painted. Your own steady hand is always the best tool for detail work.

Less Mess

Rollers may not be the easiest tool to use, but the high pressure spray of paint can make a much bigger mess and shoot paint much further. With a roller and paint brush, tape and tarps only need to be applied to the immediate area. When you’re dealing with a paint sprayer, the paint can quickly build in one spot leading to a river of paint flowing down to the tarp, or over-spray beyond the home to hit gutters, nearby trees your neighbor's car and anything else in the way.

Save Money On Paint

When you’re planning on painting a house, you’re going to need a lot of paint. Even smaller homes can use several five gallon buckets. Depending on the brand and type of paint you are using, it can be expensive. A paint sprayer provides a nice even coverage, but it’s easy to waste paint. There’s a lot of paint shooting out of that machine and most people end up using too much. Painting by hand lets you have more control over how much paint you use.

Save Time

This one may seem backwards at first. The whole point of a sprayer is to get the job done faster. That's why they're used so often in commercial and industrial settings. But you're not painting the inside of a parking structure, or the outside of an office park, this is your home. To get the smooth, seamless coverage you want, to even out the paint and make sure it fills every pock mark in the stucco or every wood-grain in your clapboard, you're still going to have to follow the sprayer with a brush to create a professional look you can be proud of. You could do a first coat with the sprayer and a second with a brush, but that means two different methods of prep and two different methods of cleanup, which will definitely slow you down.

Hiring vs. Do-It-Yourself

I’m sure the thought of painting your house and the hours, days or even weeks of work is enough to have you considering hiring contractor to come in and do the job for you. It’s certainly the easiest way. You can go about your normal life and not even be inconvenienced by it. There are two reasons why painting your house by hand yourself is better than using a contractor. Money is the biggest motivator. You could end up paying hundreds of dollars if you’re paying by the hour, and no contractor hurries when you’re paying them by the hour. The second reason is you lack creative control. You may be able to pick the color, but the method of painting and other touches are in the hands of the contractor.

You may want to take the easy route and hire a contractor or use a paint sprayer to save time, but taking the time and effort to do it yourself, the old fashioned way, can be rewarding in many ways.