Thursday, December 15, 2016

Tips for your painting estimate

Tips to make your painting estimate successful

Getting an estimate for any kind of work can sometimes be frustrating and stressful but for our painting estimates we make the process as easy as possible on our end. However the customer still has a few things they need to do.

The most important thing for the homeowner or owner of the property to do is BE HOME.
Meeting the person who will be doing your estimate and possibly the work is so important for many reasons yet every now and then someone else is waiting to meet me who knows very little about the project and most certainly cannot express the expectations of the customer to me.
Without knowing the expectations of the customer the job is ripe for failure.

The second reason to be home is simply you should meet the person doing the work otherwise it is strictly a price issue and we would not be the best fit for that type of work. Anyone can come in with the lowest price on a project, trying to make that a successful one is the challenge when you start to discount and undervalue your work.

We make a policy to not do estimates unless the decision maker is on site and can fully express the final expectations of the work to us. With our company it is more then painting, most companies and estimates you will get will say the same things, how they will apply the paint , number of coats, insured workers but with us you get an experience from start to finish. Someone who will listen to your concerns, answer emails and a very attentive staff.

Monday, December 5, 2016

What it costs to paint your kitchen cabinets

What it typically costs to paint your kitchen cabinets.
We get asked all the time about pricing and more times then not it is about kitchen cabinets.
Customers usually have gone out to find replacing the cabinets with new or faces is not cost effective.
Did you know you can paint your cabinets with a quality paint that is fully washable and as hard as new ones at half or more then half the cost?

Painting kitchen cabinets in the Lehigh Valley is not an easy process for the typical homeowner and not something as easy as it seems. Without the proper prep and procedures you can end up with a mes and a project that will in the end cost more then it would take to hire a qualified and experienced contractor such as Amato Painting.

So let's get down to the process and costs: In the sample above we first start with a wash using the correct cleaners to remove any surface contaminants BEFORE sanding or you will sand the grease and dirt into your cabinets jeopardizing your finish. After this we will lightly scuff or degloss the surface or both. Again we will wash the surface to remove any dust from sanding.
At this point we will use an oil based primer and sealer, should someone in the home have asthma or allergies we would typically use a different product. After priming we will lightly scuff the surface again and apply two coats using the correct top coats chosen for longevity, wash ability and appearance.
The cabinet painting process is not one where steps can be skipped to save money ro to use less expensive products to achieve a lower cost. In the sample above the cost for us to paint those cabinets with us taking the doors to our shop to spray can range from $2000-$4000 depending on the prep work, amount of cabinets, details on the wood, an island or other details creating more prep and finish work. You can most certainly find cheaper pricing but quality does come with a price, if someone ruins your cabinets and they are not insured the cost you saved will be one that will cost you in the end.

Saturday, November 5, 2016

What it costs to paint a bedroom in Easton,Pa

One question we get asked every day is what does it cost to paint a bedroom
Some people are shocked at the price and some understand the costs that a small company incurs on a daily basis to stay in business
Using a professional painting company comes along with many great things, a trained staff, professional painters, liability  insurance  and workman’s compensation paid on workers, crews, vehicles so if something would happen you and your family (and home) are covered. The same can not be said hiring a company who uses uninsured sub-contractors. You’re on your own there and hopefully if something would happen the insurance is in place on the company and their subcontractors
Here are some fees that are in the cost to paint a room from a professional company:

  •                   Workman Compensation and liability insurance
  •                                      Taxes, payroll taxes, social security unemployment  etc
  •                    Costs such as vehicles and marketing
  •                    Training for painters
  •                      Health Insurance and benefit packages if applicable

So what does it cost to paint a bedroom let’s get to the answer?

To paint a typical 10x12 bedroom pictured above  with two coats of quality paint from Sherwin Williams or Benjamin Moore you will have these typical costs
 The average cost would be about $350
Add the ceilings and add $150-$200
Add the baseboard for about $125

So a typical room this size is around $350-$600 Depending on what is getting done, height of walls, any patching other than small dings, dents and nail holes. The timeframe is also important; if you need it done right away a good company is ging to be booked out 4-6 weeks, so to move you up in the schedule will come with a premium.

Do you need the absolute best materials and quality? Well then that is a premium
If price is the absolute most important thing and you need the cheapest price possible, than timing and quality will certainly be where the savings will come from, it would be scheduled when crews are free , a rainy day where scheduled exterior work cannot be done.  You may get trainees on site learning the trade or the average painter while the top craftsman are on the other jobs where the top quality was requested and paid for.

Most jobs can be done under any budget “if” that is known and spoken about at the estimate.

What we find sometimes is that is not shared, someone looking for the bottom dollar price never shares that, gets a bunch of estimates and solely picks the lowest price regardless of who they preferred while if they would of shared this with the painting company they likes most likely the project could have been adjusted to make that happen

Saturday, October 29, 2016

Who we do not hire

Finding new employees is a difficult process in the first place adding to that finding painters is even harder.
It seems in this business we are lucky if someone has a drivers license, a vehicle, can pass a background check and that usually rules out 75% of potential new hires for us.
I thought I would simplify this and explain exactly what we look for and maybe it can help you in your own business. Being picky for us has been great in most ways, of course we are limited on man power but those we have are all very capable in holding their own

Top Red Flags and personality traits we do not like

  • If you live in any city the people who double park when there are multiple spots in front and behind
  • People who do not have the courtesy to hold the door for the person behind them AND let them go in first
  • Not saying yes sir and yes ma'am , this may seem old school but we offer this respect to everyone we meet daily
  • Someone who does not look you in the eye when talking to you, this always is a red flag and we do not hire those people
  • No personal accountability, always blaming others or making excuses
  • Asking how much they will be paid before they come in for an interview, I have canceled a few interviews because of this, we do not want money to be the number one motivating factor
  • Stating you will only come in if the job pays well, again similar to the above issue
  • Not showing up early, on time is late for us
We have most certainly limited ourselves as far as the total amount of painters however we have drastically increased morale and quality of work so working off our list above we will continue to be choosy who we bring into our family

Saturday, October 15, 2016

Where are all the great people?

Hiring for us has been an ongoing struggle, from blaming ourselves for the failure of the people we hire to thinking there are just no good painters left around.
So what is the answer to this? Who is to blame? The answer lies in between blame and accountability.
We do everything we possible can to 
help make someone succeed, I am going to sound like my grandfather and say people are not like they used to be, not hard working and want things handed to them. I don't entirely believe that of everyone but it is prevalent today of the applicants we see. 
Some of the issues have been
  • Showing up late to the interview if they show at all.
  • Arriving at the wrong location
  • Not dressed appropriately 
  • Cursing in the interview everyone curses here and there shit I just did now but pick your spots please
  • Asking what the jobs pays before coming into an interview
  • Asking to be paid in cash to avoid their responsibilities
So all I just mentioned are red flags in my book and immediately you will find were not interested.
Working hard to pre qualify these leads, make sure were a good fit for each other and all share them same values as the company is a good start to avoid this.
Our values are dependability, accountability, relationships, commitment and trustworthy. You can see why the red flags are a direct violation of these values.
I was taught to work hard and that in itself is a reward but eventually the accolades, money will come. We made a stand to only have people work with us who share these goals, it has limited our company in the number of people who work with us but it has made every day and every job that much better.
We hire people who want a career in painting and will do whatever they can without question to get jobs done and be a great person to their family and company, it is the only way to feel great about your company.

Acoustic Ceiling Painting

Can Acoustical Ceilings be Restored?

With proper preparation and a highly skilled and trained team of professionals, your faded, discolored and water-stained acoustical ceiling tiles can be bought back to life leaving your facility with beautiful, brand new looking tiles in half the time and half the cost of completely replacing the tiles themselves. 

With the preparation and application of a specialty coating, your existing acoustical ceiling can be completely resurfaced and coated to not only improve appearance, but also enhance acoustic function, create better light reflectance and provide greater tile life expectancy. Acoustic Ceiling restoration services also contribute to earning LEED Green Building Credits as these specialty coatings are Low Voc and avoid waste disposal by utilizing existing materials.

The entire ceiling system in place including grids, air diffusers, vents, speaker plates, etc. can be entirely resurfaced and finished in a variety of colors to match your current color scheme perfectly. The tiles themselves are restored and left in a bright, clean white finish that is sure to add the wow factor to your facility. The tile coating system is resist to dirt, dust and the yellowing that is often caused by UV light exposure which not only helps to keep your ceiling looking clean and new, but also improves the acoustical function and performance overall.

As the premier Commercial and Residential painting company in the Lehigh Valley, we are thrilled to provide Acoustical Ceiling Restoration services to our clients. Not only does this service provide our clients with the high quality craftsmanship their facility deserves, but as an eco-friendly service, acoustical ceiling restoration contributes to our commitment of going green and practicing sustainability in the Lehigh Valley. 

Sunday, October 2, 2016

What to expect on your painting estimate

Getting a painting estimate can be challenging in many ways from who do you call to how much it will cost. There are many unknowns which can make for a stressful time and one that sometimes makes you make unwise choices from choosing the wrong contractor to more importantly not selecting the right one.

When you call to get an estimate first did someone answer the phone who was polite and could answer most of your questions? Did they ask what your time frame was? Nothing is more frustrating then having contractors come out who can never meet your deadlines which simply wastes your time and the contractors. A simple question on their end can eliminate this.

After an appointment was set that is good for both parties did the contractor show up on time or at all?  This is my first red flag when looking for a contractor, if they are late to the consultation what makes you think they will be on time when your project is going on. If were late and I can count on one hand he amount of times I have been late we always call.

Did they arrive wearing a company shirt and dressed well? This again is important, if they show up in a dirty vehicle and dressed horribly it is a reflection on how they treat their own property. How do you think they will treat yours?

Were they writing things down or simply looking around and going to guess at your price? No matter how many years someone has in the trade writing things down is a necessity if only to be able to have notes for the painters who arrive on your project.

Once they arrive you should tell them immediately what your project consists of and walk through each area and be very detailed . This is your one shot at explaining clearly and being able to get a clear and accurate price. I will say it again failure to know expectations is the number one way a project will go wrong. We make sure this doesn't happen often by writing everything down, repeating what is told to us and giving the painters a clear scope and copy of what we wrote. This eliminates 95% of issues on job sites.

Once you get your estimate whether that is on the spot or emailed you should look it over and make sure the scope of work matches what you explained at the estimate and follow this with a phone call with the estimator. Following these simple rules can save a ton of wasted time and effort and make a decision an easier one.

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Why you need an epoxy floor

From the early stages of the installation process to the long-term maintenance needs, Epoxy floor coating offers a number of benefits and advantages for the Commercial property owner. It’s important to mention that the application process must be completed by a team that has been  trained and certified by the manufacturer of the product so that the installation process will run smoothly and go off without a hitch. When applied correctly by a seasoned team, the Epoxy floor coating service is fast allowing a company team to get back to business in a timely manner. Even the dirtiest, oldest concrete floors can be transformed quickly into beautiful, sophisticated looking surfaces both durable and easy to clean as they are resistant to germs, bacteria and mold. When applying the coating, a variety of colors can be used to create patterns and a unique high-gloss finish. Contrasting colors can be used as well to create safety zones, forklift traffic zones, even the company logo. 

Epoxy floor coating not only provides a hard wearing and long lasting surface, but it is also resistant to just about everything — oil, gasoline, chemicals, scratching and chipping, heat and impact which truly make epoxy coatings the ideal flooring solution for warehouses, industrial plants, health care facilities, food distribution, manufacturing, and many more. In addition to these benefits, epoxy floors are cost effective, environmentally friendly and have the ability to increase productivity by enhancing visibility, reducing wear and tear on transport vehicles and allowing for timely material movement.

At Amato Painting, LLC., we take great pride in having a crew of highly trained experts who are professional, manage their time effectively, and provide top quality craftsmanship from trained applicators. While epoxy coatings are not inexpensive at first, the reduced maintenance and performance of the coating will far outweigh the long term replacement costs of a typical floor 

Sunday, September 18, 2016

Marketing tips for painting companies

Marketing is a team effort for a painting company

Running a painting company or any company for that matter has a lot of moving parts and none are more important than your marketing. Marketing does not just happen in an office sending out some postcards and slapping a sign in the yard. If you think this is the case you will be sitting in your home come the winter time wondering what happened.

So we have done our work in the office, got the lead, did the estimate and follow ups and made the sale but guess who your marketing really depends on? The painters

Marketing starts in the office but also extends to the job and that job is of the painters. Are they showing up wearing wearing clean clothes and a nice company shirt? Did they place a sign in the yard and say hello to the neighbors? Did they bring in the newspaper each morning when arriving at the job or do they show up grunt good morning and start painting because they think that is their only job. If that is the case your missing a huge aspect of your marketing which creates more work. We look for men and women who see the bigger picture, the more quality jobs we have they more work they have and working through the winter is huge to painters. If they can help decide their fate isn't that an awesome feeling?

You have one chance to make an  impression on the homeowner and hopefully a good one so they will refer you to the next customer, a referral is the best lead as it costs next to nothing to get. Why pay for leads when they are right in you hand to take if you do your work.
When arriving in the morning remember it isn't when you step on the property, it is when you pull up in the driveway, are you smoking in your truck? Put it out when your a block away and remember many people do not smoke and can smell your clothes and jackets if you place them inside the home. Quitting smoking is a better idea but if you must keep in mind other people and respect their property.

If you keep it simple here are a few tips to increase and tweak your on the job marketing:
  • Know they are watching before you arrive
  • Know the neighbors are watching
  • A clean company shirt
  • Professional workers
  • Yard Signs
  • Say hello and be friendly
  • Ask for referrals
  • Go the extra mile

Monday, September 5, 2016


People often call and simply ask what does it cost to paint my house?
This generally is very hard to clearly answer as there are many variables such as their expectations, the current condition, access, timing of the project and so much more. However nothing is more frustrating then showing up at an estimate when they are simply trying to establish a budget or looking for the lowest possible price for it. To alleviate this we have begun to gather as much info BEFORE we even show up on the estimate the dreaded pre qualyfying phone call.
By asking many questions and determining budget we can many times save wasted time or trips. Think about it, wouldn’t it be great for me to show up already knowing what you hope or expect to spend on a project knowing there is a good chance we can offer that? Or would you rather have someone show up, spend 30-45 minutes showing them around and probably 2-3 times over with other contractors also only to have sticker shock when they send that proposal over and then have no options.
By knowing your estimated budget does not mean you will pay more with reputable companies, for us knowing your price points will help us tailor a prescribed solution to your project rather then waste time knowing your looking for a Ford and were offering a Ferrari. So here are a few sample prices to show you what you may expect to pay. Of course every job and company is different but it is a starting point. With our company I know our numbers very well, our employees are just that and are insured and we carry workman’s compensation. Training is available and scheduled for all painters which means you get skilled craftsmen along with an apprentice or two learning the trade. Prices below are examples of residential painting, commercial prices are generally lower because of the known conditions and scope of work is generally within blueprints = no guessing
If you woudl like a consultation on your project please visit or call 484-821-7112

Sunday, August 28, 2016

Being a Lehigh Valley commercial painting contractor has been a learning experience in many ways however the one aspect we never forgot about is the painters need continual training on new applications and new products as they change quite frequently.

We like to have our painters come back to the shop and have a fun relaxed time from the rigors of the job site but at the same time bring in experts from the many paint and tool companies we use on all of our sites. After doing this and learning all about the new products it is typical we change what we may be using. This can benefit the customers in many different ways such as:
Longevity of the job which equals less money repainting
Quicker return to service with some of the faster drying paints
Easier coatings to work with = lower costs due to faster production
Experts at new coatings = less mistakes using incompatible coatings                                      
  Safety Training = Awareness of potential accidents keeping insurance costs down.
As you can see by having an experienced and highly trained staff at your disposal it can ultimately keep the end costs down while getting an even better quality job. We spend a great deal of time and cost to differentiate our company from some of the others in our area and would encourage any company to do the same whether a painting company or not.
Some of the great companies who have sent in teachers have been: