Winters in the Adirondacks can go on longer than many non-winter sports enthusiasts like, but the silver lining is an extended window to complete winter home projects. Being stuck inside during cold weather gives homeowners a perfect opportunity to freshen up some interior projects. As the weather cools and you spend more time inside, projects may jump out at you. Noticing the details of your indoor living spaces, areas that need attention or improvements will likely pop up during the longer winter days indoors.
Our Adirondack Premier Properties agents have helped many sellers prep their home for sale, and many of the same spruce up tips also apply to winter home projects. If it’s been a while since your last update, cleaning and painting your kitchen and bathrooms is a great way to brighten up your home. Painting can provide a fresh, much-needed update, whether you choose a new color or just add a fresh coat. Added bonus – it’s a project that can be done quickly for a few hundred dollars, making it the perfect weekend project.
Winter Home Projects – Painting Basics
If you’ve never done interior painting before, doing a little homework and prep before you start can increase your chances of a better outcome for your winter home improvement projects. First, consider recent trends and what color palette would work best in your existing space. Consider using an online paint simulator tool to test out different colors on your cabinets.
Second, decide what kind of paint will work best for your surfaces. According to HomeDepot.com, the type of paint you need depends on what materials the cabinets are made of. Wood or compressed wood can be sanded, then repainted. Laminate cabinets should only be painted with products designed to stick to plastic surfaces. While acrylic and alkyd paints can do a great job, glossy or semi-gloss oil-based paint is best for durability and scratch-resistance.
In addition to picking out the right kind of paint, it’s also good to put some thought into how you will apply the paint to the surface. Be sure to use good quality synthetic bristle brushes for acrylic paint. Natural bristle brushes work best for oil paints. Also, be sure to have a system set up to thoroughly clean and dry your brushes in between painting sessions.
Prepping the Space
When you have all your supplies in hand, it’s time to get your spaces and surfaces prepped for your painting winter home projects. Clear all clutter from your countertops, empty the cabinets, remove all hardware. To prevent unsightly spatter, cover backsplashes, appliances and floors with plastic sheeting secured with painter’s tape. To make sure that all drawers and hardware are returned to their correct locations, label them clearly so you know where they go at project finish.
Depending on the paint you choose and how much ventilation is needed, open windows and cover doors with sheeting to keep dust and fumes from the rest of the house. When the chosen paint type requires opening windows, many Adirondackers move the project to a garage or outbuilding. This allows the house to stay sealed up tight and eliminates worry about wind and wet getting inside while the project is in progress.
Once your spaces are cleared, covered and ventilated, it’s time to prep your surfaces to best receive the paint. Begin paint preparation by degreasing the cabinets and sanding all of the surfaces smooth. Prime the cabinets with paint primer, and use a wood filler on all holes to give the hardware a tight secure fit. Paint carefully and brush away any drips or runs as soon as you see them.
After you have a smooth and dry primer coat on, it’s time to begin applying your color. To prevent thin spots, peeling and bubbling, allow plenty of time between coats for the paint to dry thoroughly. ThisOldHouse.com recommends finishing with a high-gloss acrylic varnish over the final coat of paint for a rich, modern look.
Taking your time and following the guidelines above you will be able to produce a smooth-to-the-touch finish without streaks, wavy lines or drips. A fresh coat of paint in the right color can help your old cabinets breathe new life back into your kitchen or bath. With relatively little cost and preparation, painting kitchen and bath cabinets is one of the best winter home improvement projects to get big return on your time investment.
If you are looking for other ideas to increase the saleability or aesthetic of your home, check out some of our other blogs or contact one of our Adirondack Premier Properties agents today!