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Before You Accept a Low House Painting Estimate, Ask These 4 Questions

Before You Accept a Low House Painting Estimate, Ask These 4 Questions

Are you planning a home painting project, interior or exterior?

If so, you likely have at least a few estimates in front of you, each with a different number on it. Or, you will soon.

The temptation can be to simply grab the lowest bid. After all, as long as the paint gets applied, why pay more, right? Paint is paint.

In the world of professional painting, however, you truly do get what you pay for. And, while bargain bids may seem like a no-brainer, they can sometimes end up being the most expensive option when all is said and done.

Cheap Painting: When a Bargain Is No Longer a Bargain

Photo by MB Jessee


There are a lot of details woven in and through your painting estimate, and it’s important to know what isn’t being said just as much as what is.

To clarify what we mean, here are a few concrete questions you can ask your painter to better understand what is being sacrificed in order to make your low estimate possible.

What Should You Ask Your Painter?

  • What kind of surface prep does my estimate include? - Thorough preparation and making necessary repairs is an essential part of a quality painting project. Otherwise you’re building on a faulty foundation and your finish will suffer for it.

  • Are you using a high-quality product? - The ingredients in cheaper paint just don’t perform as they should, meaning that your paint will not last as long, look as good, or cover your surfaces as well during the application process.

  • Can you explain the details of my warranty? - Lengthy warranties look fantastic on paper, but often are full of loopholes that protect the painter but leave you out in the cold. Even if it’s a shorter duration, a clear, concise warranty that really offers peace of mind is much more valuable.

  • Do you work with subcontractors or employees? - While hiring a subcontractor for a specific task is not always a bad thing, your painter should rely primarily on their own dedicated, invested team. You want to be sure the painters are committed to quality, not just to finishing the job and moving on.

Paying more for a job well done is always more cost-effective than needing to pay extra to correct poor craftsmanship. It’s also more cost-effective to invest in a beautiful, longer-lasting finish (interior or exterior) than frequent, less satisfactory work.

Take the time to get to know your painter: their story,local commitment, examples of work, and reviews. Finding and partnering with a true pro is priceless!

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Customer Reviews

“I love the article in the paper on your company. Thank you for supporting our community by painting at the Claremont Middle School. Thanks!”

— Carla Banks

“The entire MB Jessee team is courteous, efficient and professional. From scheduling and estimating to the crew managers and crew, they all did an excellent job on a small (but complicated) two room project in my house. I'm already thinking about getting them scheduled for the next project in the spring.”

— Cari Cheney

“Just wanted to let you know that the crew was great to have around the house for the past two weeks. All three of them were professional, courteous, and attentive to my thoughts/concerns and were extremely knowledgeable. They paid great attention to the detail and it shows.”

— Mark & Roberta Gross

“The painters at MB Jesse are top notch! Cesar's team was super friendly and helpful. They were very polite and accommodating. Their expertise in everything painting related was evident in their attention to detail and efficiency painting tricky spaces. The apartment looks brand new!”

— Adam Swisher

“Matt, Julie & Ricardo, I just wanted to take this opportunity to thank the three of you for the wonderful job you did in hosting the SFBA NARI Chapter Meeting on Wednesday evening. Everything was perfect from beginning to end. Members and guests alike walked away with a truly positive experience. The "painter for a day" and the cookies in the paint cans were an absolute brilliant touch and received rave reviews. What a wonderful way to do such positive marketing. Thanks again for a truly memorable experience for our members and guests. You are valued as a NARI member.”

— Judy Tufo, SFBA NARI Executive Director

“I just wanted to send you an email to say that John did such a great job over here today. He is truly a hard worker. He has the perfect balance of friendliness, honesty, and professionalism. I trust him. He takes the time to do the job to the best of his ability and that is what sets him (and your company) apart from the competition. He didn't make me feel rushed. He really made me feel like our job was the most important thing in the world. Thanks again!”

— Jo
Oakland

“We just wanted to let you know how pleased we are with the work of MB Jessee Painting and your employees. Everything turned out beautiful. Our foreman was great! He was punctual, professional, neat and very accommodating ... and went the extra mile. We will definitely recommend you to our friends and family.”

— Michelle & Rivers Gee

“MB Jessee just finished our exterior and we couldn't be happier with our experience. The foreman (Pedro) and lead painter (Ricardo) were incredible to work with: they communicated scheduling clearly, Ricardo was a joy to be around every day, the showed up early every day, were incredibly tidy and did great paint work. The final walk through experience was incredible. Pedro pointed out items I missed demonstrating a clear desire to complete another quality project. I highly recommend them. As others have noted they definitely aren't the cheapest but you quickly realize that you're getting what you pay for. The 3 year guarantee is also a nice touch since there are likely touch up items that will show up after the job is done.”

— Joshua Jansen

“I had my wooden kitchen cabinets painted white. Anabal and Danielle were doing the job. I have nothing but praise for them. They came on time, cleaned up every day, were respective, friendly and helpful. If the rest of Jessee's crew are as great as Anabal and Danielle, this company will go far.”

— Anni S.
Oakland, CA

“The people at M.B. Jessee are great – from the painters to the office staff to Matt. Talk about leadership from the top.”

— Kevin Ames, Mark Becker Homes

“MB Jessee painters are stellar! As a designer I've worked with numerous companies over the years, and MB Jessee is a top-notch firm. From the first phone call to the final clean up, every person is courteous, professional, and hard working. The owner, Matt, is a charitable leader who has instilled his team with integrity and honesty providing the customer with a first class experience at a fair price with a paint job that is guaranteed to last. I highly recommend MB Jessee. Thank you Matt and your STAR crew-Daniel, Rigoberto, Vicente, Edy, Pedro, and Mario, for a job well executed! Cynthia Brian, ASID, Starstyle® Productions, llc”

— Cynthia Brian
Morgan, CA

“Awesome work by highly experienced, professional painters. They were: Conscious about the amount of time it would take. Ours had a lot of pre-work and took 3 weeks. Accommodating when we added a few last-minute changes Understanding when a heatwave hit and we remove some of the plastic sheeting over windows, which they had to put back up the next day. Accessible, especially the on-site crew (Hi Jose & Victor!) -- always answering questions and checking in. The end result is a perfect paint job that makes our 94-year-old house look brand new. I would definitely hire MBJ again”

— Stacey R.
Oakland, CA