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HI,
I'm new to this site, but i've been in business for many years.
I am the owner of a custom painting and cabinetry com.
I will try and keep this short and simple.My problem is that I've built this reputation through my customers to fix most imperfections in walls and ceiling before I paint.(meaning - nail pops,dents,and any seams that need to be feathered in). After each job I complete about 95% of all imperfections and it looks great,but it usually takes me around 2 to 3 days of spackling and i'm losing money on the job.The advice that i'm looking for is do you guys spend most of your time spackling,and how do you charge for it. Alot of the new construction repaints I do have a ton of nail pops in the ceiling and the walls.Is it expected of painters to go spackle crasy and if you do how do you charge.How much do you spackle?
 

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well abm customs, i am like you, i spackle nail holes, caulk cracks and stuff like that. However i don't go crazy doing it unless they specifically ask me to get all the imperfections out of the wallls and out of the doors and trims. I am a detailed oriented painter though, and i do empasize on spackling and caulking, but i don't go over board caulking tiny hairline cracks or spackling small pinholes. Besides most home owners aren't that picky. The way that i make sure that i don't lose money on jobs due to prep work, is to do a thorough walk through of the house before giving my estimate. I carefully check for all prep work needed and account for it. I carry a written checklist with me that i created, and on it i have dissected a paint job to simple, basic procedures like "cauliking, spackling, sanding, etc." and by each item i jot down how much time i plan to complete each procedure. For example, next to "sanding" i might put 4 hours, that being the time it will take me to complete all sanding on a given job. Once i have completed my walk through and carefully jotted down how much time i plan to complete the job i then estimate for materials. I then go home and do my math. I add up all hours estimated and multiply by my hourly rate, I then add in for materials, paint and other equipment needed. I then mail the prospective client a written estimate. If the owner wants to know on the spot the price for the job then i roughly do the math and give them a ballpark estimate, but advise them that it is only a ballpark estimate and that i will still mail them the accurate estimate also.
This is the method that has seemed to work for me. It might work for you
 

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sauced, you might want to break that down into paragraphs. I read a lot and that was difficult for me to follow.
 

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okay, so basically what i tried to say in that huge paragraph was that i am also detail oriented, and pay alot of attention to the prep work.

In order to make sure that i account for all the prepwork that i need to do, i do a careful examination of the house or building to be painted. I check to see how much spackling, caulking, scraping, sanding etc. that i need to get done.

To help me with this i carry a checklist with all the basic prepwork that usaually gets done on every job like spackling and caullking. i simply jot down the estimated time to do each task. At the end i use the checklist in preparing my estimate.
 

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I'm not a professional painter, but it sure sounds like the work you are describing that you do as just part of your service is the perfect scenario for offering the client up charges for optional work that goes above and beyond what the quote entailed.
 

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I do not paint for money, but I am a detail oriented little cuss and I *DO* spackle every little pinhole or crack - especially on interior painting.

When we moved in we did the kids rooms and my middle son's room must have been occupied by a teenager before we got the place. There were pinholes literally EVERYWHERE. The kid had also painted the room a very dark charcoal grey and so when I was done doing the damned spackling it looked almost as if some of the walls had been partially primered.

THOUSANDS literally of pinholes in that one, and bygum I got every single one. I probably shoulda just re-textured woulda been quicker but at that point I didnt know how to do texture :p

Anyway, I caulk and spackle to a degree that would make it profitless for a professional, but I like the results better... and I WOULD notice if a pro did not meet the same standards.

Charles
 

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Oh i totally agree with you, in terms of walls and ceilings i leave no holes or cracks whatsoever. I was reffering more to the trimwork.

I could spend endless hours filling in all the minor dents and sanding, until the trim looks and feels smooth like the body of a car. But some home owners don't understand the amount of work it takes to do that, and just complain because the price is too high.

Therefore in your situation, you should make it clear to the contractor that that you are a perfectionist and you want prep work and painting done accordingly. But don't be surprised if the contractor gives you a higher bid.
 

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saucedo80 said:
Oh i totally agree with you, in terms of walls and ceilings i leave no holes or cracks whatsoever. I was reffering more to the trimwork.

I could spend endless hours filling in all the minor dents and sanding, until the trim looks and feels smooth like the body of a car. But some home owners don't understand the amount of work it takes to do that, and just complain because the price is too high.

Therefore in your situation, you should make it clear to the contractor that that you are a perfectionist and you want prep work and painting done accordingly. But don't be surprised if the contractor gives you a higher bid.
Typically a much higher bid cause he sees you coming in with a 300 watt bulb when he finishes and questioning every aspect of the job as the job is being done :cheesygri
 

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Im not too sure i understood your comment, could you rephrase that please?
As for people that like to just be looking over my shoulder at my every move and question every aspect of the job, i am not really fond of those people and prefer to stay away from them.
 

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new to the business and i do spackle/sand the walls down and take care of all the nail pops and cracks...however what do you do when you find ie.big holes in the walls or lets say damage on a wall from a bookcase that has been taken down....as a painter are we suppose to fix it or do we say not my job???
 

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I'd say you're doing the right thing by fixing all the defects. Just spend more time when doing your measurements and find those cracks and pops before you give them a price.

We have the same problem in new construction projects. So in our proposal I specifically write in "X" hours alotted for wall repair. Any more time will be an additional charge.

Keep doing good work, just find the right way to make money at it. Maybe even do the repairs on a time and material basis.
 

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Speaking of spackle...can you guys recommend one that drys quickly and does not need refills. Obviously, if the hole is deep, it needs 2, sometimes 3 applications...I'm talking about minor holes and imperfections. I have used several types...none that I have been happy with.

I presently use one from dap, it goes on pink and drys white.

What do you use and why.

Thanks.

Zeebo
 

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abmcustoms said:
...do you guys spend most of your time spackling,and how do you charge for it.
Most of my time? No
I wouldn't have a problem with it, but I charge for it
It's in the bid as part of prep (I don't itemize for the customer, but for my records, that's what it is)
abmcustoms said:
Is it expected of painters to go spackle crasy and if you do how do you charge.How much do you spackle?
Again, it seems like you are talking about a project that would be above "average" prep
I would add a type of "per hour" charge to whatever I though the prep (wall repair) would take
If I thought it would take a half a day, I would add 1/2 day charge

it usually takes me around 2 to 3 days of spackling
You've got a problem
I've got to assume you are not talking about spackling, but joint compound repairs that need several coats, needing each layer to dry before continuing

If each day it takes me less than 1/2 day to put up the coats, but I have to wait 24 hours to continue, I charge 1/2 day for each day

So, if it's bad enough for me to need 3 coats, that's a serious wall repair, and It'll add 1 1/2 days to the price of the project
(1/2 each for 3 days)

If I literally need to spend three 8 hour days "spackling" or joint compound repairs, that's some serious mess, and I would (probably sub it out lol) add three days (day rates) to the job price
 

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I think what needs to be clarified in this thread is as to what the original poster is involved with. Is he doing new construction, or repaints?

If it is a repaint, then it should be discussed with the HO as to what needs to be done, and charged for accordingly.

If it's new construction, then him and the GC have to have a serious talk, or back charges and/or change orders are going to start flying.
 

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...jammin
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ProWallGuy said:
I think what needs to be clarified in this thread is as to what the original poster is involved with. Is he doing new construction, or repaints?

If it is a repaint, then it should be discussed with the HO as to what needs to be done, and charged for accordingly.

If it's new construction, then him and the GC have to have a serious talk, or back charges and/or change orders are going to start flying.
Good point
He could be following the world's worst tapers here
 

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ProWallGuy said:
No, that company works in in StL going by the name of McCo***** Drywall Services. :rolleyes:
:laughing:
Haven't had the (dis)pleasure, but I have run into what must be his cousin from up north
lol
 
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