The "Crazy What a Coat of Paint Will Do" Exterior Makeover

The "Crazy What a Coat of Paint Will Do" Exterior Makeover

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Janel Laban
Oct 30, 2015
(Image credit: Submitted by Jess)

Jess sent in photos and info on her exterior makeover project. She writes: Crazy what a coat of paint will do! We chose Benjamin Moore's Sun Valley for the doors and French Beret for the trim. We had originally chosen black instead of the deep blue/gray. Clearly we made the right choice. I love that the door is a ray of sunshine every time you see it! In gray Seattle weather, you need to be reminded of the sun sometimes.

(Image credit: Submitted by Jess)

You are seeing one side of our midcentury side-by-side duplex. We co-own with a friend who lives in the other side. We did this project together over the summer.

(Image credit: Submitted by Jess)
(Image credit: Submitted by Jess)


Here's Jess's intel on tackling a trim, facia, and gutters project:

Get quotes: A very long process of calling dudes to tell you how much it is to replace gutters and fix the facia. Some showed up hungover and smelling of whisky. Some showed up 6 hours late. Some were just right. Make sure they give you a piece of paper with their card and quote, you will mix them up. Three months later you will decide half of what they quoted you you will do yourself to save money.


Get the right tools or have a neighbor that is a professional house painter: Co-owning is great because that means you share the cost of stuff like this. Between both sides, we had mostly everything we needed. I think power tools was the only way to get the boys motivated to actually devote their weekends to this beautifying project. That and our basement flooding (more on that later).


Demo: Rip off all the rotting gutters (carefully and safely because there will be lead) and take to the dump. We have spent a lot of money at the dump, it is not cheap. I will never complain again about neighbors leaving junk in their yards. There is a reason rich neighborhoods look nice, because they have $$$$. It is so expensive, around $80 per load because we were always over the weight limit! I think we went about four times. I am glad we do not live in a rich neighborhood, clearly we would not live up to their standards.


Repair, patch, caulk, sand: This was the fun part. But, before we actually painted everything we had to replace and repair rotting sections. I was happy not to do this part, as the guys just took care of it. It took about two full days to do that while I prepped and caulked. Caulking is fun by the way. Oh and do not forget to re-glaze your windows! The glaze is the putty that holds the glass in the windows. This was also fun. Sanding is not fun.


Paint: We primed first with tinted primer, then painted two coats of paint. I forget the finish type, but if you are still reading this and really want to know I will reward you by finding out.


Gutters: After an entire summer of work, it was finally time to fork over some cash to the gutter guy. He came and finished in one day! We chose black for the gutters, and it looks fresh. I highly recommend him.


Details: Technically we are not done. We still have not replaced our house numbers or replaced or painted our light fixtures. But I expect this will happen slowly over time. Oh and then there is scraping paint off the glass of the windows and painting our storm door in the back. Eh, probably will happen next summer.

Overall the project went smoothly. Yeah there were days we sort of wanted to kill each other, but that is totally normal when you are doing annoying exterior house projects. Obviously we would all rather be subway tiling our backslashes right now. But gutters are important. So important when it rained after we took them off our basement flooded. Team effort really got the job done. And between three heads coming together, I think we did a pretty good job of doing things ourselves. Unlike some people [cough* cough*] the previous owner.

See more of Jess' style on her blog: Pine and Boon

Thanks, Jess!


Re-edited from a post originally published 10.17.14 - NT

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