Monday, October 14, 2013

Biggest DIY yet!

Yes - you're seeing that correctly.  We have taken on a full exterior paint job as a do it yourself project.  I can't say we won't hire a professional before this whole thing is done - but for now we are seeing what we can do.  We've started on the back side of the house and hope (NEED) to finish this side before our New England Winter shows up.

Steps taken so far:
  • Scrape any old paint that will come off
  • New paint colors selected

Steps needed before winter:
  • Finish the never ending scraping
  • Sand all cedar shingles
  • Prime everything
  • New PVC window trim
  • Flash AC unit
  • Correct bad flashing job on porch roof
  • Final coat of paint (if this can't happen, we'll need to prime again in the spring)

What we've learned so far:
  • Residing a house is expensive! We've priced out DIY options of just stripping the whole house and starting fresh with new shingles but we have red cedar (which are the best you can buy) and the cost to replace would be crazy.
  • Don't caulk between every single shingle.  Sealing up the whole house with caulk = a house that can't breathe.  And a house that can't breathe = bubbling paint everywhere.
  • A pressure washer cannot replace human scraping.... bummer.
  • You get killer calf muscles when you're on a ladder all weekend.
The scraping supply bucket: safety glasses, variety of scrapers, bee spray!
We have a decent routine now for set up, clean up, and take down each night so that we're not spending too much time setting up our work space each day.  We'll keep you updated as we progress and what else we learn in the process.


  1. Wow. Just wow. :) Good for you guys! We also need to paint our house and we have cedar shingles, too, but I think we are going to hire someone. We definitely considered doing it ourselves, and I'm sure my husband will do some of it- there's some rotting trim to fix, we can power wash to get it cleaned, etc.- but we pretty much decided that the scraping and painting will be left to the professionals. We also want to change the light fixtures since they are a lovely (now rusted) brass. Good luck! I hope you are able to move quickly on this!

    1. Kristen - thanks so much for the comment - we're moving better now that scraping is done. We'll post an update this week!