Interviewing a Painting Company for Your Condo Association

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Finding the Right Pro for the Job

How often do you need to think about exterior painting for condominiums or HOAs depends on what type of exterior your buildings have. Wood exteriors should be painted every 4-6 years, stucco, every 7-10 years. Of course, this will depend on exposure and the condition of the property. There are three things to consider when planning; the type of paint, working the specifications out, and hiring an exterior painting contractor.

First, choose your paint. The color should compliment its surroundings. Consider the roof color, landscaping and any stonework or brick when choosing your color. The finished product should protect the building from ultraviolet solar radiation.

Another aspect to consider is whether to use light or dark colors. A light color will reduce the inside temperature of a building. A dark color will absorb heat.

Don’t forget the climate. The substrate below the paint will expand or contract as the temperatures fluctuate. Another reason you need high-quality paint.

Next, a paint specification and bid package will need to be drawn up. This will give detailed information about everything that needs to go into the job, like prep work, application, color, cleanup, etc. It will also list the exact products that will be used so that contractors who bid on the job will all have the same information. Make sure that they complete an inspection of the area to be painted.

The specification and bid package should include the following:

  • surface prep
  • detail caulking and spot-priming instructions
  • any product specifications by manufacturer name and number for each type of substrate needed
  • number of coats and application guidelines
  • the insurance, contractor’s license and reference requirements needed for contractors
  • warranty requirements
  • a written agreement to follow the provided specifications
  • a general contractor needs to inspect and repair substrates

Finally, you will need to hire your exterior painting contractor. While price is an important aspect, it shouldn’t be your only consideration. Pick the top bids, then interview the contractors. Here are some questions that you should ask:

  • Who is the one with whom I will be communicating?
  • Will there be a foreman on site whenever the work is being done?
  • Does your company have workers’ comp and liability insurance?
  • Is there a way to get in touch with you after hours or on weekends?
  • What are your work hours?
  • Where will your materials be stored?
  • Will you be providing an on-site restroom for your workers?
  • What will you be doing to ensure that the job site is clean and safe?
  • Is a permit needed for this project and if so, will you be procuring that?
  • When do you propose to start this project?
  • When is your proposed end date?
  • How many workers will be on this job?
  • Have you performed background checks on your workers?
  • How will you let home owners know when you plan to begin power washing, prepping and painting?
  • How do you normally paint front doors?
  • How long have you been in business?
  • Will you be adding the association as an additional insured on your policies for the project?
  • Are you associated with any of the following organizations: Community Associations Institute (CAI), Educational Community for Homeowners (ECHO), or other professional guilds or societies? If so, which ones?
  • Do you provide a close out binder once the project is complete?

You should feel free to add any other questions that you feel are important for your particular project. Once you’ve done your homework and conducted the interviews, you can be confident that the exterior painting for your condos will be done right.


Download the Condo Association’s Legal Guide to Choosing Contractors to learn more!

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