<h2 style="margin: 10pt 0in 0pt"><font size="3" color="#990000">Painting – a quick and inexpensive way to update your home</font></h2><p><span style="font-size: 10pt; line-height: 200%; font-family: ‘Verdana’,’sans-serif’; letter-spacing: 1pt">(ARA) – In today’s economy, more and more homeowners are looking for ways to spruce up their home without spending a lot of money, and there is no better way to change the look and feel of a room than painting.</span></p><span style="font-size: 10pt; line-height: 200%; font-family: ‘Verdana’,’sans-serif’; letter-spacing: 1pt"><p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt" class="MsoNormal">But even if you are a first time painter, there’s no need to worry. Just follow these simple tips from the experts and you’ll end up with a room looking like it was painted by professionals.</p>  <p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt" class="MsoNormal">"Preparation is 90 percent of the battle," says Lou Manfredini, Ace’s ‘Helpful Hardware Man.’ "Before you pick-up the paintbrush, take a moment to look at the space you are working with and determine the tools you will need for the project. This will help insure you have the right supplies for the job and save you unnecessary trips to the hardware store."</p><p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt" class="MsoNormal"> </p><div style="text-align: center"><object classid="clsid:D27CDB6E-AE6D-11cf-96B8-444553540000" codebase="http://download.macromedia.com/pub/shockwave/cabs/flash/swflash.cab#version=6,0,29,0" width="425" height="282"><param name="movie" value="../images/banners/10b.swf" /><param name="quality" value="high" /><param name="menu" value="false" /><param name="wmode" value="" /><embed src="../images/banners/10b.swf" wmode="" quality="high" menu="false" pluginspage="http://www.macromedia.com/go/getflashplayer" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" width="425" height="282"></embed></object></div>  <p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt" class="MsoNormal"><strong>Paint</strong></p><p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt" class="MsoNormal">Think picking the perfect color is all that matters when choosing paint? Think again. There are two main types of paint to choose from, oil-based and latex-based paints.</p>  <p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt" class="MsoNormal">* Oil-based paints go on thicker, so it’s less likely that you will have to apply more than one coat. They are ideal for chalky surfaces or walls that already have several coats of paint on them.</p><p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt" class="MsoNormal">* Latex paints give off less of an odor, dry faster and retain color better than the oil variety. The majority of paints sold in the U.S. are latex-based as they have a higher gloss, are easier to touchup and are the perfect choice for wood, drywall, stucco or concrete. </p>  <p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt" class="MsoNormal">Once you’ve selected the type of paint, you’ll need to choose the level of gloss, which refers to how shiny the paint is.</p>  <p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt" class="MsoNormal">* High-gloss paints are ideal for high-traffic areas such as the kitchen, bathroom, railings, trim and windowsills because they provide a tough washable finish that is stain resistant. One drawback though is that they show surface imperfections, so make sure you take care when painting with high-gloss.</p><p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt" class="MsoNormal">* Semi-gloss is less stain-resistant, but is easier to work with, so use this type of paint on walls that see less traffic (and fewer dirty hands).</p><p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt" class="MsoNormal">* Eggshell paints are a little less glossy than semi-gloss, and are a good option for those who dislike having shiny walls.</p><p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt" class="MsoNormal">* Matte or flat finish is a perfect choice for ceilings and walls that see little to no traffic.</p>  <p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt" class="MsoNormal">Finally, you’ll need to know how much paint to get, which you can determine with a simple formula:</p>  <p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt" class="MsoNormal">* Measure the total footage around the perimeter and multiply by the wall height in feet.</p><p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt" class="MsoNormal">* From this subtract 20 square feet for each door and 14 square feet for each window.</p><p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt" class="MsoNormal">* Divide by 300.</p>  <p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt" class="MsoNormal">The result is the number of gallons that you’ll need to complete the job. There are also online calculators that can help you figure it out, like the one on AceHardware.com.</p>  <p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt" class="MsoNormal"><strong>Tools</strong></p><p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt" class="MsoNormal">When purchasing paintbrushes and roller covers, try to buy the highest quality that you can afford as it really does make a difference. If you aren’t sure what to buy, choose rollers for large spaces, traditional paintbrushes for smaller spaces and thin angled paintbrushes for corners and trim.</p>  <p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt" class="MsoNormal">Paintbrushes and roller covers come in natural and synthetic materials. "Use a synthetic brush when you use latex paint since latex can make natural bristles frizzy," says Manfredini. "Natural brushes are best when used with oil-based finishes."</p>  <p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt" class="MsoNormal"><strong>Get started</strong></p><p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt" class="MsoNormal">With the right paint and tools on hand, its time to get to work. Push the furniture into the middle of the room and cover with a plastic tarp or old sheet. Next, put painter’s tape along the borders of the space, such as the doors, windows and trim.</p>  <p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt" class="MsoNormal">Paint in wide brush strokes and alternate the direction you paint to avoid stripes on the wall. In no time, you’ll have a beautiful room to enjoy.</p>  <p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt" class="MsoNormal">For more painting tips and advice, visit the painting tips section at <a href="http://www.acehardware.com/" target="_blank">acehardware.com</a> , or stop by your neighborhood Ace Hardware store.</p>  <p><span style="font-size: 10pt; line-height: 200%; font-family: ‘Verdana’,’sans-serif’; letter-spacing: 1pt">Courtesy of ARAcontent</span></p></span>