Curb appeal is a phrase that is tossed around a lot, but all it really means is “how does my home look?” At first you may question the importance improving your home’s aesthetic, but, before you discount appearance, remember that if you are looking to sell your home, the exterior is the first thing a potential buyer will see. Beyond that, some HOA’s (Home Owners Associations) and organized communities have stringent rules and regulations dictating how a home’s exterior must be kept. And let’s not forget how good it feels to pull into a driveway and see something you are really proud of.
Beyond mere appearance, many of the “curb appeal boosters” listed below actually have protective, lasting benefits to the interior and exterior of your home. Painting and sealing exteriors, doors and fences will protect the wood and interior of your home from rain, excessive sunlight, moisture and insects; potentially adding years to your home.
College Pro Painters is the premier student-run painting company in North America and Canada. With over 40 years of experience in the industry, College Pro Painters offers the following tips to improve your home’s curb appeal:
College Pro Painters reminds you that every great book should have a great cover. Painting your home’s exterior can add thousands of dollars to a residence’s resale value, and is one of the most cost-effective improvements you can make to a home.
Spice up an otherwise dull color scheme of a home by painting the door. Not only will it give your home a burst of color, it sets the tone for the rest of the house. Try a fun, bold color like red or yellow for a non-traditional yet classy look.
Highlight interesting architectural features of your home by panting trim. You can toy around with new color palettes and give your exterior a “face-lift.” College Pro Painters reminds homeowners that while painting trim can be a great improvement, there are plenty of downfalls, so be sure to consult a professional before beginning any major home painting projects.
Give your fence a little personality with a fun color, or classic look. Fences frame your home, and are often the first thing noticed on a property, so keep yours looking great!
For more home painting tips, visit the College Pro Painters website. Happy painting!
College Pro Painters, the largest student run painting company in North America understands the importance of sufficiently prepping exterior surfaces before painting. College Pro Painters is committed to using only the highest quality paint and materials and guarantees a beautiful exterior paint project. Here are some of the frequently asked exterior paint prepping questions our franchisees hear from their customers:
How do I eliminate exterior cracking and flaking from my home?
College Pro Painters have found this problem is most likely caused by the coating. Common culprits are alkyd enamel or latex primer which is applied as a top coat before the undercoat is fully dried. This common problem is solved by removing the outer layer of damaged surface by scraping and sanding, then applying a high-quality oil-based primer. Once that is dry, paint can be applied.
How do I avoid exterior peeling?
Exterior paint begins to peel when it is exposed to excessive moisture or has been applied to a dirty surface. Sometimes peeling occurs when low-quality paint is used or the incorrect mixture of paint is applied (combining oil based paint over a wet surface). College Pro Painters caution the only way to avoid this issue is to remove the peeling paint, thoroughly prep the surface and apply a high quality acrylic latex exterior paint.
How do I remove and prevent mildew buildup?
Mildew buildup is often caused by prolonged exterior exposure to moisture with very little direct sunlight. Commonly, this is seen by College Pro Painters on walls with northern exposure and under eaves. Mildew can also be a result of poor priming to wood surfaces before painting. College Pro Painters will treat this with a mixture of water and bleach and leave it to sit for about 20 minutes. This process is repeated until the mildew is gone, at which point the surface will be treated with exterior latex primer followed by high-quality paint.
These are just a few of the common problems College Pro Painters sees on a daily basis, although exterior prep issues can be frustrating to homeowners, College Pro franchisees and painters are highly skilled and trained to quickly and easily diagnose your exterior home ailment and proceed with the best and most effective way to fix the problem and guarantee that it all necessary precautions are taken so the issue does not reoccur.
Think of the trim of your home as the “icing on the cake.” It stands out, showcases a homeowner’s attention to detail, and can really make or break any color scheme. Unfortunately, painting trim can be an arduous process; demanding hours of preparation and tedious detail painting. While the results are definitely worth the work, you can make the job that much easier with the right know.
College Pro Painters is the premier student-lead painting company in North America and Canada. In business since 1971, College Pro has the skills and experience to help you with any residential exterior painting project, including trim painting. Here’s a handy list of tips and tricks from College Pro regarding trim painting that can help make your newest painting project easy and painless.
College Pro Painters recommends that if you’ve recently replaced the caulking around your windows or doors to make sure the caulking is dry prior to painting over it. And when you are painting caulk, be sure to use enough paint to create a protective seal around doors and windows. This will protect interiors from insects, rain and wind.
The best way to avoid getting unwanted paint on doors and screens is to remove them altogether. Not only will this protect them, you can use this time to make minor repairs you’ve been putting off, such as mending rips and tears in screens or repainting and refinishing wood doors. When painting doors, College Pro recommends starting with the panels first, then rails, and finally the edges.
Gutters and downspouts made of galvanized metal can pose a problem for the energetic do-it yourselfer. These tough spots are often very dirty and worn down and require additional prepping prior to adding paint. These elements should be scraped with a wire brush to remove loose paint and then primed and painted. When painting downspouts, College Pro recommends painting in the direction of the flutes, which is generally top to bottom. For an added layer of protection coat the inside of your homes gutters with asphalt based paint. This will waterproof the gutters and seal any holes or cracks you may have, this potentially adding years of use to your gutters. This is especially useful in climates with high amounts of yearly rainfall and precipitation.
Maybe it’s about that time…your home’s exterior paint is chipping, fading, or hanging on to that color which might have been huge in the 70’s but just isn’t “groovy” anymore. And so it’s time to consider painting. A fresh coat of paint can offer many benefits to a residential exterior; it can protect and seal siding from weather and sun damage and can also boost resale value as well as curb appeal. The big question now is “who’s going to do it?”
Many homeowners opt to hire a professional licensed painting contractor, like College Pro Painters, to handle the job, while others choose the do-it-yourself route. There are definitely pros and cons to both options, and the best way to choose the path that works for your home is to be educated on your options.
One of the first considerations any homeowner should visit when evaluating a home painting project is the size of the job. Upon first glance a painting project may seem scalable, but there are more variables to consider than meet the eye. Priming an exterior for optimal painting conditions can involve many processes such as scraping old paint and thoroughly cleaning and power washing surfaces. This can be extremely labor intensive, especially when working with older homes and very damaged exteriors. Additionally, College Pro Painters warns that care must be taken when prepping residential exteriors; windows, doors, trim, lawn, porches and walkways must be carefully evaluated and protected prior to beginning any paint job to ensure that the products of your labor are the desired result.
Price is an obvious consideration in any home improvement job, and although a do-it-yourself job may seem less expensive on paper, there are hidden costs involved which must be accounted for. Paint alone may not seem like a huge expense, but when you begin to consider that you will need a primer, prepping tape, ladders, a variety of paint brushes and sprayers, and other tools, you will see your bottom line shooting up. Not to mention the most valuable asset of all; your time. Time is a precious commodity and while some may enjoy the challenging hours of outdoor labor, others see lost time as lost money.
At the end of the day, the choice to hire a professional painting contractor like College Pro Painters or do it yourself is an individual choice, and both have the potential to yield great results, but take a small piece of advice and explore all your home improvement options prior to committing to any option…happy painting!
For aspiring entrepreneurs, owning a College Pro franchise is a great opportunity. Outside of starting your own business, young adults have few opportunities to run their very own business. Because it’s so difficult to secure financing without a proven track record, the chance of gathering start-up capital is difficult if not impossible, especially in today’s market. College Pro gives franchisees an opportunity to develop business and personal skills in a real-world environment. Part of the College Pro success revolves around the strong training and support network young business owners receive throughout the relationship. The skills honed create stepping stones to even higher achievements. The program has produced no shortage of franchisees who point to College Pro as the reason for their success in the business world today.
No amount of studying can prepare a student for some of today’s business challenges, but it helps. Putting theory into practice is a good way to make that transfer from the classroom to the real world. Owning a College Pro franchise helps young business owners prepare for, and manage their own business. Successful candidates go through a rigorous training program before operating their own franchise, and through training and mentoring, College Pro franchisees learn how to measure financial results and use these to set goals. Franchisees learn best practices for hiring and training employees, managing inventory, resolving customer complaints and performing community outreach. As with any business owner, College Pro franchisees face new challenges every day―mistakes happen, projects are delayed, employees call in sick. The advantage to owning a College Pro franchise to starting your own business is the support network ready to give you a helping hand to guide you through some of the inevitable challenges.
Beyond the concrete business experience, it’s what young entrepreneurs learn about themselves in the process that can carry them into future success. What are you good at and what are you great at? Do your time-management skills and strong work ethic enable you to successfully balance a heavy workload? Can you prioritize in a way that meets the demands of the business as well as the needs of your personal life? Do you excel at driving top-line sales and building a happy customer base? Or are you best at managing the bottom line and hiring the right employees for the job? These are questions that we can only discover through hands-on business experience. The advantage of experiencing this challenge as a College Pro franchisee is that you’re not alone in the process. Business professionals acting as mentors provide the feedback necessary to help you succeed both personally and professionally.
The College Pro system is designed to ensure the success of young entrepreneurs. The company’s core purpose, ‘together, realizing potentials’, guides young adults along their professional and personal development path.
Today’s savvy consumers are increasingly on the lookout for eco friendly products and solutions. This holds true for paint products as well as painting service providers. As in many industries, new innovations in exterior paint are addressing consumer demands. Homeowners can now make an impact in three areas of the painting process. They can choose environmentally friendly products, recycle and dispose of waste properly, and choose an eco friendly painting company.
Eco friendly paint products now line hardware store shelves. There are even “zero-emission” paints that are free of the volatile organic compound (VOC) that produce a variety of health-related problems. When choosing an eco friendly product, look for one of the three most recognized green certifications: Green Seal, EcoLogo and Design for the Environment by the Environmental Protection Agency. In addition to the new green paint products on the market, latex-based paint is friendlier to the environment than oil-based paint. Beyond product selection, how you deal with leftover paint products also has an impact on the environment.
Recycling and disposing of waste responsibly has a significant effect on the environment. To prevent excessive waste, measure the area you intend to paint, and purchase just the amount of paint necessary. If you are left with paint that you don’t want to store, take it to a Household Hazardous Waste (HHW) collection center. Or call HHW for advice on how to dispose of latex versus oil-based paint as well as paint thinner, turpentine and mineral spirits. Pouring paint down the drain or dumping in a landfill harms the environment.
Eco friendly painting companies are becoming more and more common. Professional painting services, such as College Pro Painters, keep up with the latest industry standards. College Pro Painters is certified by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to perform painting. What’s more, they adhere to eco friendly steps throughout the painting process. From selecting to cleaning up paint products, College Pro Painters follows green standards. Because painting your home’s exterior is a truly arduous task, most homeowners will contract a professional painting service. To protect our environment, it is important to select a painting company that is a frontrunner in the green movement.
New innovations in exterior paint abound. From green products to environmentally friendly recycling and disposal options to eco friendly painting services, consumers have options. You can choose any exterior color you want while still keeping green as your top choice.
Lead the home improvement parade in your neighborhood this summer by painting your home’s exterior. Any homeowner interested in maintaining and enhancing their property value wants to keep up with home innovations, and paint is one of the most affordable and noticeable home improvement options. Summer is the perfect time to paint your home’s exterior. As you heat up the barbecue in the backyard, and gaze at your home beneath the afternoon sun, you might picture ocean-blue exterior trim encasing the windows and doors. Before you invest in an exterior paint job, gather color ideas in your area. Strolling around your neighborhood is a good way to discover new color schemes, and as you list your top choices, there are a few things to consider before deciding on an exterior paint color.
A color scheme allows homeowners to put a creative thumbprint on their property. Color adds character to your home. You want to choose a combination that expresses your individuality without standing out too much in your neighborhood. Part of increasing your property value means making improvements that work to enhance your neighborhood. Summer is the perfect time to comb your area for color options. You may also encounter neighbors in the painting process you can talk to about exterior paint. There are several factors to consider beyond color.
The type of siding on your home influences your paint choices. Stucco, wood, and metal surfaces all demand unique paint products. Weather also plays a part in the paint selection process. Homes exposed to bright sun and high temperatures will need a paint that can endure the harsh elements. The same holds true for the side of your home facing south. While summer may have you thinking about bright colors, if your home spends a significant part of the year basking in the sun, you should choose a light color for the exterior. This is where a professional painter comes in handy. Contact a professional service provider, such as College Pro, to walk you through this process. The good news is you don’t have to completely forgo color; consider painting the exterior trim and your front door with the vibrant colors of summer.
Purchase quality paint products. Painting your home’s exterior is an investment you want to last. Low-quality paint doesn’t hold its color, may not adhere properly and can be difficult to clean. With consumers increasingly focused on eco friendly solutions, you might also look into some of the new innovations in exterior paint. Quality paint is now available without the volatile organic compounds (VOC) traditionally found in paint, and many painting companies are in tune with these latest trends. Professionals, such as College Pro, are certified by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to perform painting.
Painting is a fun summer project. Focusing on uniform brush strokes while the sun warms your back and the birds sing can be enjoyable, but it’s not as easy as it sounds. A good paint job requires multiple skills sets as well as unwavering patience. For most homeowners, the most relaxing way to address your home’s exterior painting needs is with long neighborhood walks to gather exterior painting tips. Once you’ve identified your favorites, hand your research to professionals, such as College Pro, and head to the beach!
Putting on sunglasses that have just been wiped clean reminds you of how nice it is to experience the world through crystal clear lenses. No longer distracted by a cloudy film or spots, you admire your environment with a new clarity. If it were as simple to clean the windows in your home as it is to return your glasses to a like-new condition, most homeowners would keep it on their regular home maintenance routine. Windows are important because they are often the centerpiece of a home’s façade. Admiring a meticulously landscaped garden through clean screens and sparkling glass is much more enjoyable. With the help of a professional window cleaning service, such as College Pro Window Cleaning, you can add windows to your cleaning to-do list. Professional window cleaning services also offer several hidden benefits.
Which cleaning solution you purchase and how you apply it affects the end result. Numerous window cleaning products line store shelves. You can purchase cleaners for both the inside and the outside of a window. The trick is how to use the product so that you are left with a streak-free window. Outdoor window-cleaning products, which attach to a garden hose, rinse and soap large picture windows, but spots often persist if you don’t follow up with a squeegee. This may require using a ladder. The outcome is also influenced by the technique used when employing the squeegee as well as the time of day. Companies such as College Pro employ trained window technicians.
Using improper equipment can hinder the window cleaning process and put your safety in jeopardy. Cleaning floor-to-ceiling decorative windows are a challenge. While it may be tempting to perch on the edge of a sofa to reach as high as possible, this won’t effectively clean the window. More importantly, it is an accident waiting to happen. Professional window cleaners come equipped with the right tools to do the job. Choose a service provider, such as College Pro Window Cleaning, that is a member of the Better Business Bureau and ensures employees go through safety training.
Professional window cleaning services extend far beyond delivering streak-free windows. Window-cleaning technicians also clean screens and window sills. After a professional cleaning, you may find that the window that got stuck half way up its track, now easily slides to the top.
Window cleaning influences the way you experience your home from the inside and the outside. It also protects your investment. Professional window cleaning protects the window frames and the exterior trim from early wear and tear. It also helps identify cracking in its early stages. Left unrepaired, cracks can lead to water intrusion and mold problems. Adding a professional window-cleaning service to your home upkeep schedule is a benefit that outweighs the cost. Service providers such as College Pro Window Cleaning offer affordability and quality.
Graduating from business school gives people the tools and foundational knowledge to manage a business. But it doesn’t guarantee success. Because of a high failure rate, securing financing is difficult. You have to demonstrate that you can manage money before someone hands it out. Studies show that the average entrepreneur, between thirty and fifty years old, fails at a rate of 60-80%. This means that six to eight individuals in ten will try to start a business and not succeed. Among the reasons for failure, studies cite the lack of a business coach, inadequate financial knowledge, and not knowing your target market. The good news is that College Pro can help you earn the practical experience your formal education can’t provide.
There are a handful of employers willing to give you the freedom to learn the ins-and-out of running your own business. Managing a College Pro Painter’s franchise allows you to balance work with school. The experience can give you the valuable business expertise you need to secure financing for a startup in the future. The personal skills honed along the way are an added benefit. A former College Pro Painters franchisee based in Northern Colorado achieved just that.
“I was attending school full time and working full time at Texas Roadhouse. I had no money as a Freshman or Sophomore. I was working two jobs just to pay for school and the mortgage on my home. I always wanted to run a business, but could not see any feasible way to get the “real” experience I would need to convince someone that I could turn their money into real profit…Thanks to a bit of luck and good faith, College Pro fell into my lap and I got to fulfill my dream as a twenty-year-old College student.”
The benefits of managing a College Pro franchise extend beyond earning a steady income. It’s the real-life experience you cull from taking on the responsibility of managing a small business on your own.
“I ran a business and learned how to finance myself for the rest of my life.”
College Pro franchisees have an entrepreneurial blood coursing through their veins. The application process can help you determine if accepting the challenge of being a business franchisee is for you. It’s not an easy task, but it is a rewarding one.
“I also learned that if you put your mind to it you can accomplish a lot more than you think. I learned how to lead people, manage finances, deal with customers, sell myself, manage my priorities, schedule my time, build a network, balance personal/work/school/family time appropriately. Most importantly I took control of my future, paid for school, invested in my home, invested in myself, and am on the path to retire by the time I am 35. I do not know how I will do this, I just know that through the hard work ethic and personal potentials I realized through College Pro I will be much closer to this goal!”
Job and internship opportunities fill university newspapers when summer rolls around. While most of us want to take a break and have a great time, building work experience and earning money are also high priorities. With College Pro, you can have all three. Painting is a demanding job that requires a lot of patience, but working together with a team of other young adults to accomplish a common goal can be rewarding. You will not only gain valuable business experience, but also develop your resume by identifying your core competencies. Your personal strengths stand out in the face of new challenges. When you know what they are―strong interpersonal skills, good time management or the ability to organize a heavy workload―you can focus on developing them. College Pro can make this challenge fun.
Business majors and overachievers might want a rigorous summer challenge. If running your own business sounds like an opportunity you’re ready to accept, consider applying to become a College Pro franchise manager. Different from the various internships available to college students throughout the summer months, College Pro offers you the chance to earn money. For many young entrepreneurs, this is an important motivating factor. Be prepared to undergo a lengthy interview process as well as a demanding training program. College Pro strives to set young entrepreneurs up for success. Making sure you’re prepared to meet the challenge is an important step in the process.
If you’re looking for more of a work/play balance, apply to work as a College Pro painter. Painting offers more benefits than meets the eye. For people eager to enjoy the summer sun, painting allows you to spend the day outdoors. The new friends we make during summer breaks often turn into lasting friendships. As a College Pro painter, you’ll be collaborating with many young adults on a daily basis. When the day is over, most painters won’t need to go home and study. Celebrating a successful day at work is one of the benefits of participating in the working world. After surveying a job well-done with your colleagues, you can head to the beach to catch sunset or to the pizza parlor for a slice of pie. It won’t be all on-the-job fun.
Contact College Pro or talk to a career counselor at your university to see which position most closely meets your needs.