What I'm Seeing Now

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You Do Know That Not All Paint Sticks On Everything, Right?

I often see painting errors on new construction, and I often think -- you do know that not all paint sticks on everything, right?

This is a brand-new home.  Nobody has moved in.  This is the final walk through.

This is the FAMOUS REVEAL!  It's when the builder can finally SHOW OFF THE HOUSE.

Painting requires knowledge and skill.  It is not a slop-it-up product.  Care must be taken to paint at proper times - basics, like when it isn't too cold outside, or too hot, or wet.  These basics are only small a part of the understanding one gains when the painting craft is learned.

The craft IS NOT LEARNED in a parking lot where the "painter" is picked up along with a group of other "painters" for work that day on somebody's expensive new home.

Knowing how to spray paint onto a surface is one thing.  Know what preparation must be made to the surfaces prior to painting is another.

Priming is one way to prepare a surface for painting.

It protects the subsurface and provides a very good product for the paint to stick to.

When priming is not done, like to the right where MDF is used (medium density fiberboard) the trim will swell and deteriorate rapidly.  Many such spots on this house had not been painted, much less primed.

But, not all paint will stick to everything.

Latex paint will not stick to an oil-based product - like oil-based paint or plastic.

Why not?  Because latex has a different chemical make up and its surfectants (the paint additive that sticks the paint to whatever the surface) will not adhere.  Before you go spraying latex paint around, care must be taken to prevent latex paint from being sprayed onto material to which it will not adhere.

None of the plastic fixture mounts on this house were protected prior to spraying them with latex paint.

Notice how the latex is already peeling from the plastic?

How long has this paint been there?  I'm told less than two weeks.  All of the vents, plastic track members, bases, etc., were spray painted and are peeling just as beautifully as these two plastic bases.

Not only does this demonstrate a LACK OF PROFESSIONALISM, WHICH IS MY BIGGEST, BIGGEST, BIGGEST BEEF WITH NEW CONSTRUCTION, but it also demonstrates a LACK OF SUPERVISION, WHICH IS MY SECOND BIGGEST BEEF WITH NEW CONSTRUCTION.

People often ask me which is the best builder, or if the builder of the home they are buying is a "good" builder.

My answer is simple:

IT DEPENDS ON THE SUPERVISOR WHO IS ON SITE EVERY DAY,

AND THE SUBCONTRACTORS THE BUILDER HIRES FOR THE HOUSE.

Is that plain enough?

Now this mess has to be taken care of and I assure you the result will not be attractive.  And some of the plastic bases and vents with peeling paint are very high up!  Good luck.

This is entirely unnecessary.  There isn't enough time to do it right, but there's enough time to come back later to fix it?

My recommendation:  some of this sort of thing can be handled up front by the buyer.  They can ask if the supervisor on site every day actually has long experience and up-to-date understanding of proper construction techniques.  How long has he been with the company?  How many houses has he supervised the construction of?  Where do they get their subcontractors?  And do the subcontractors have actual employees, or just groups of "construction professionals" they pick up for day labor?  These kinds of questions are essential and will have solid impact on the quality of the product buyers are paying good money for.

 

 

 

 

Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC  

Based in Bristow, serving all of Northern Virginia.

Office (703) 330-6388   Cell (703) 585-7560

www.jaymarinspect.com


Comment balloon 15 commentsJay Markanich • November 26 2014 01:57AM

Comments

Good morning, Jay....I've experienced both types of painters and the bottom line is you get what you pay for....and one must be patient and not rush the painter...I had one for my downstairs rooms who took forever, but the final job is flawless with multiple coats....the upstairs cost me half and was finished in a half the time.....I can see some flaws....it looks good but it's not perfect....

Posted by Barbara Todaro, Marketing Agent for The Todaro Team (RE/MAX Executive Realty ) over 4 years ago

Jay, sometimes it pays to hire and pay for a profesional. Sounds like someone was looking for a cheap short cut. enjoy your day!

Posted by Wayne Martin, Real Estate Broker - Retired (Wayne M Martin) over 4 years ago

It is a challenge here for FHA buyers....painting outside trim in frigid temp...not sooo much !

Posted by Sally K. & David L. Hanson, WI Realtors - Luxury - Divorce (EXP Realty 414-525-0563) over 4 years ago

I once had a plumber, Barbara, who looked at the job and said he could do it.  He asked that we allow him to take his time, because he looked slower because he was very careful.  But he promised a perfect job.  We have called him back many times since.

Even the builders should be hiring professionals Wayne.  This is more than just a cheap short cut - this is ignorance.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 4 years ago

It simply cannot be done S&D.  They will have to wait until spring.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 4 years ago

Painting is not as easy as it looks -- and you are right on with your comment, "There isn't enough time to do it right, but there's enough time to come back later to fix it?"  Coming back to fix anything is the wrong answer-- do it right the first time!

Posted by Kat Palmiotti, The House Kat (Grand Lux Realty, Monroe NY, 914-419-0270, kat@thehousekat.com) over 4 years ago

Kat - at the risk of sounding arrogant and perfect, a professional does not consider the job finished until the job is done right.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 4 years ago

We know of a so called painter in the area.  When he paints he paints everything.  Including the electrical outlets and he doesn't care.  I do understand now he is no longer employed.  That is a good thing.  He did leave a ever lasting impression on everyone. 

Posted by James Dray, Exceptional Agents, Outstanding Results (Fathom Realty) over 4 years ago

Good morning Jay,

Learned this one in the automobile business.

Make yourself a great day.

Posted by Raymond E. Camp, Licensed Real Estate Salesperson Greater Rochester (Howard Hanna Real Estate Services) over 4 years ago

That is idiocy James.  People don't understand how complex a chemical paint is and it has to be done right.

Raymond - different paint still!  And no doubt you remember Earl Schieb.  Any car for $99.99!!

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 4 years ago

It's just paint JayMan, let's just spray it on and call it good. Who's going to know any better? 

Posted by Tom Arstingstall, General Contractor, Dry Rot, Water Damage Sacramento, El Dorado County - (916) 765-5366, General Contractor, Dry Rot and Water Damage (Dry Rot and Water Damage www.tromlerconstruction.com Mobile - 916-765-5366) over 4 years ago

Exactly the mentality Tom.  Exactly.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 4 years ago

Jay, I advise people on painters. The good ones typically will be more expensive in the beginning but their work will last so it will be less expensive over time.

Posted by Donald Hester, NCW Home Inspections, LLC (NCW Home Inspections, LLC) over 4 years ago

"IT DEPENDS ON THE SUPERVISOR WHO IS ON SITE EVERY DAY,

AND THE SUBCONTRACTORS THE BUILDER HIRES FOR THE HOUSE."

Amen, Brother Jay!!

 

I will say that I don't like the way they spray paint on some of the new homes. Sometimes they spray right over the hinges and everything that gets in the way! Watch out... here he comes!!

Posted by Fred Hernden, CMI, Albuquerque area Master Inspector (Superior Home Inspections - Greater Albuquerque Area) over 4 years ago

Don - it's my experience that good lasts longer.  And professionals cost more.

Brother Fred - this house has James Hardie, installed incorrectly in may places and many ways.  Not GuildQuality.  The spray paint coat was ridiculous, and in the right light you could see a thin, single layer here and three coats over there.  See comment to Brother Don above.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 4 years ago

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