Interior Painting

A fresh coat of paint can do wonders for the interior of your home. It’s cost-effective and can have a tremendous impact on how you, your family, and visitors see about your home.

You may want to hire a professional painter to make sure the job gets done right. However, if you’re a DIYer, you’ll want to avoid these interior painting mistakes. 

Choosing The Wrong Color

One of the most important decisions you’ll have to make is choosing the right colors. Unfortunately, this is not as simple as pointing it may seem. You can’t just point at the color that stands out to you the most at the store or in a catalog. We get it, the abundance of colors to pick from can be downright intimidating.

When choosing a painting color, keep these tips in mind:

  1. Keep your furniture and decor in mind. If your paint color clashes with your couch, decorations, or cabinets, it can devalue the entire aesthetic of the room.
  2. It’s not possible to get the true sense of how a color will look by just using a small paint swatch. We suggest painting large areas of your walls where the light hits differently.
  3. It’s tempting to go crazy and test a dozen different samples, so we recommend choosing three colors.

As we said, colors look a lot different on a sample card compared to their sample card. This is why we offer all of our clients a one-hour consultation with an interior designer to help them pick the perfect color.

If you don’t have that option, follow the three steps we listed above, so you choose the right color.

Skipping Prep

We’d all prefer our painting projects to take as little time as possible, but a little prep work upfront can save you a world of headache and cleanup in the end. 

Follow these simple prep steps:

  • Clean all painting surfaces to remove foreign substances like dust, grime, and dirt. The reason you do this is that the paint needs something to stick to.
  • Remove any chipping, flaking, or peeling paint. Failing to remove damaged paint will cause your paint to chip, flake, and peel faster than normal.

Not Using Painters Tape

Using painters tape ensures that you’ll have clean edges and a professional finish. Skipping prep steps like using painters tape is the biggest separator between DIY painters and professional painters. Without painters tape, your paint job will look sloppy.

We understand you want to jump right into painting so your Saturday project doesn’t turn into an entire weekend, but you have to understand most of your time will be spent on prep.

Quick Tips:

  • Seal the tape tightly around the baseboards and windows to prevent paint from bleeding under and defeating the purpose.
  • Remove the tape before the paint dries so the paint doesn’t peel off with the tape when you remove it.
  • Make sure you purchase real painters tape instead of masking tape.

Leaving Fixtures Exposed

Before you start painting, make sure all of your fixtures are covered or moved. This includes doorknobs, wall plates, light fixtures, and furniture. No painter is perfect and paint will spill. When this happens, just make sure it doesn’t spill on a valuable item.

Quick tips:

  • Move furniture to the center of the room and cover it with plastic drop cloths.
  • Put canvas drop cloths on the floor instead of plastic drop cloths so you’re less likely to slip.
  • Before you remove a ceiling light or fan, shut off the circuit breakers to the room. 

Not Using Primer

Primer can make the difference between a professional paint job and a rushed amateur project. 


Primer creates a smooth, shiny finish instead of a blotchy and uneven finish.  Primer gives your paint a sound surface to adhere to, and it improves the look of the fresh shade. Primer also seals the original material like wood, drywall, or concrete so you don’t have to put multiple coats of paint to get a consistent finish.

Final Thoughts

As you can see, all of the five common painting mistakes have to do with prep. Most of a professional painters job is properly prepping the project so it turns out as desired and the cleanup is easy.

This article was brought to us the Grand Rapids Painters over at Hillis Brothers