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Not So Nice Paint Can Do More Than Make Your House Pink - It Can Lower its Value

Posted by: Heidi Nyline

Honestly, I was all set to re-launch my Not So Nice in my Neighbourhood series with a nice house. I promise. A neighbour (and customer) recently installed an amazing alpine garden in her front yard and I love it so much I am going to show it to the world.

But that is going to have to wait until next week. Because I can't keep my mouth shut on another house in my neighbourhood any longer.

It happened this summer.

Warren came home from walking the dog and said "you've got to check out this house in our neighbourhood that just got painted".

It was so bad he actually took a photo and brought it home for me. The photo was bad but when I went out the next day to investigate, I was speechless.

The latest addition to Heidi's Not So Nice in My Neighbourhood collection.

What happened here?

Well, it could have been that the homeowners bought cheap paint like this poor guy did.

As soon as I saw this article I lost all my inhibitions about resurrecting my Not So Nice in My Neighbourhood series. If I can help ONE homeowner from doing this to their house, I can endure the "you are so mean" and "who are you to judge?" comments and criticism.

Cheap paint doesn't have enough of the expensive ingredients (titanium dioxide) to provide solid coverage for a high pigment colour like this cranberry red. The end result is a streaky paint job and a colour that looks pink instead of red. Daniel Smith of Strokes of Genius Painting in Ottawa wrote a great article today on exactly what the difference is between cheap paint like Behr and a high quality paint like Benjamin Moore Aura. Lori Sawaya of The Land of Colour also wrote a really good article on why a white primer and bad colour choice added to the problem.

Instead, I will show you the difference with a couple of pictures. We painted this house this summer and we used the right paint. Two coats.

The right products can make all the difference in the end result.

But this problem isn't just about using cheap paint. It's also about using cheap labour. I don't know if the homeowners of the house in my neighbourhood decided to take the DIY route or they hired the cheapest painter they could to do this to their house. In either case the end result is they have decreased the value of their home.

Think about that. Spending the effort, time and money to paint your home and you make your house worth less than it was before it was painted. Those poor homeowners. That paint job will have to be redone, which means spending more money, time and effort.

Lesson(S) here:

Use the right products when you paint your house. Cheap paint might not save you money in the end. If you are on a budget, don't go to Home Depot looking for the cheapest paint and advice from an inexperienced sales person. Go to a paint store where the staff knows and understands the products and when and where they should be used. They can help you find the right paint for your budget. White primer under a clear base red paint will never cover.

Get professional colour advice when making a significant change to the exterior colours of your home. I don't even want to get started on the colour of those pillars and the garage door and how bad they look. A professional colour consultant would have steered both the guy in New Hampshire and the homeowner in my neighbourhood to much better colour choices. The wrong colour paint costs the same as the right colour paint.

The wrong colour paint costs the same as the right colour paint.

Hire a professional painter. I know there is an entire marketing machine out there telling you that any industrious homeowner can make a quick trip to the local big box store and can get all the advice and equipment needed to paint their home - just like a pro. To the small percentage of weekend warriors out there that can tackle a project like painting their entire house, my hat is off to you. To the rest of the folks out there, don't be fooled by a 30 second commercial or a well edited episode on HGTV. Painting the exterior of your house is a big job and doing it wrong can have lasting implications on your house.

Hiring a professional doesn't mean hiring anyone that calls themselves a painter. You need to hire a painter that knows how to do the job properly and what products to use. If you need advice on how to do that check out my section on Hiring the Right Painter.

I guess this means I am back. Calling out bad paint jobs, bad painters and bad paint.

Feel free to send in the comments. I can take it.

Posted by: Lindsey
Do you mind me asking what color blue that is on the last home?

Hi Lindsay, it was a custom colour chosen by the homeowner.

Posted by: Patch
Finding this post has awsneerd my prayers

Well then, my work is done :).

Posted by: Vanessa Rider
I think it is perfectly okay to point out the obviously ugly in order to steer others in a better direction. I can only imagine how devastated the neighbors across the street were when they watched the paint going on. Sometimes I wonder if there is an element of colorblindness involved in these unfortunate selections. I think there should be a sticker on exterior paint that says, If this color turns out to be atrocious, please, for the love of your community, let us alter the color. Or start

 Too funny Vanessa. Unfortunately there is no such sticker.

Posted by: Sharyn Adler Gitalis
Heidi: I think that the pink house is pretty and fun. You should read the book, ''The Big Orange Splot" by Daniel Manus Pinkwater. Why not have a crazy pink house. I bet that person feels marvelous every time they go home.

Hi Sharyn, I agree that bright coloured houses can be fun and beautiful. We've done lots of painted ladies with what would be considered crazy colours - including pink. Unfortunately, this house was meant to be Red and not pink. It's only pink because they used the wrong paint.

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