THE MAGAZINE FOR PROFESSIONALS | JUN/JUL 2017
Sanding Systems + WHAT’S NEW IN
Smart ideas for selling your business
2017 SURVEY RESULTS ARE IN! The brands pros prefer
Pro picks for specialty coatings Sprayer training: saves crews time, saves you money
. t i t a e w s r e v e , r e v e n t u B With the SuperDeck® premier deck care system, you can tackle every job confidently. From stripping to staining to sealing, SuperDeck gives you products for every phase. So it’s quick and easy to give your customers a great look every time. To learn more, visit swsuperdeck.com or contact your local Sherwin-Williams store or representative. ©2016 The Sherwin-Williams Company
[ CUTTING IN ]
“ Education is learning what you didn't even know you didn't know.” —DANIEL J. BOORSTIN
Amanda Haar ART DIRECTORS
Kathryn Heeder Hocker Martha MacGregor
t doesn’t matter if you’ve been in the painting business for 20 days or 20 years, there’s always something to learn. A willingness to learn, along with staying open to the fact that there might actually be something worth learning, can have a big impact on how successful you are at your craft, as well as running your business. In this issue of inPAINT, we explore a full range of learning topics, from sprayer training to selling your painting business. In addition, we’re pleased to present the results of the second annual inPAINT online survey. And while we take great pains to make sure all the articles we feature are relevant and educational, I suspect the survey results may prove to be the most informative for many readers. The results include the opinions of your peers on everything from their favorite tape, economy paint and stain to their preferred roller, sprayer and work vehicle—and more. While you may not agree with every opinion, you may just learn a thing or two about what other pros are using to get the job done. As always, we welcome your feedback and invite you to educate us on the topics you’d like to see covered in future issues. Cheers!
Cindy Puskar CONTRIBUTING WRITERS
Stephanie Conner Stacey Freed Daniel Honan Jake Poinier Meghann Finn Sepulveda Brian Sodoma SOCIAL MEDIA
Jillian McAdams PUBLISHED BY
REM Publishing Group LLC 8924 E Pinnacle Peak Rd Suite G5 #575 Scottsdale, AZ 85255
Amanda Haar Managing Editor, inPAINT editor@inPAINTmag.com
inPAINT Editorial Advisory Board
Cover Photo Courtesy of Festool
0 Ciro Affronti, Operations Manager/Field Supervisor, Affronti Property Solutions, LLC 0 Christine DaSilva, Manager of Administrative Operations, The Larkin Painting Company, Inc. 0 Cliff Hockley, President, Principal Broker CCIM, CPM, Bluestone & Hockley Real Estate Services 0 Mike Kelly, VP & General Manager, Crestwood Painting 0 Mary Kay Liston, President, Five Star Painting
0 Scott Lollar, Director of Operations, Catchlight Painting 0 Tom Lopatosky, Founder & President, LOPCO Contracting 0 Jim Norman, Owner, Norman Construction 0 Art Snarzyk, Owner, InnerView Advisors, Inc. 0 Emma Souder, AIA, GGP, GGA, Principal and Owner, Red Iron Architects
©2017 REM Publishing Group LLC All rights reserved. Reproduction or use of content in any manner without written permission by the publisher is strictly prohibited. Opinions expressed in signed columns and articles do not necessarily reflect the views of the publisher. Publisher assumes no liability for any damages or loss of any kind that might arise from the use, misuse or inability to use the materials or information contained in this publication. All material and information appearing in this publication is distributed and transmitted ‘as is,’ without warranties of any kind, either express or implied, and is subject to the terms and conditions stated in this disclaimer.
Jun/Jul 2017 | inPAINT
inPAINT® Jun/Jul 2017
16 Survey Says
Results of the 2017 inPAINT online survey
DEPARTMENTS 6 Ask a Pro How do you leverage ‘green’ in the promotion of your company?
22 Sanding Systems Choosing the right system for the job
26 Sprayer Training
Saving business owners time and money
30 Pro Picks
Pros talk specialty coatings
34 The inPAINT Interview Manufacturer’s perspective
A fast look at the forces at work in our industry
9 Trend in Focus The impact of color on home sales
10 The News Industry ins and outs
12 Work Smart The art & science of selling your painting business
36 Tools of the Trade What’s in today’s professional toolbox?
38 Upcoming Events The what, where and when of the industry’s leading events
39 Bottom Line Create a business that serves you
inPAINT | Jun/Jul 2017
Build on what works.
Chip Gaines Home Renovation Expert
Professionals, like Chip Gaines, depend on the repeat business that comes from doing things the right way. No half-measures. No cutting corners. And that means insisting on KILZ Products. A family of surface coating solutions trusted by professionals for over 40 years. Learn more at KILZ.com.
[ ASK A PRO ]
Q: For 18 years, RYAN AMATO was in the New Jersey painters’ union, where he was lucky enough to work for a single company for most of those years. But the events of 9/11 and, then not too many years later, the Great Recession, drastically cut his workload. On his days off, he did side jobs. Then the scales tipped and he had enough side work to branch out on his own; he joined forces with his father and a cousin, both union painters. Six years ago, he incorporated as an LLC. His father passed away and Amato and his cousin now run Amato Painting, which does interior and exterior commercial and residential work, and has between 15 and 20 employees. 6
inPAINT | Jun/Jul 2017
How do you leverage 'green' in the promotion of your company?
While we offer green products as well as traditional paint products, my interest in environmentally friendly paints came out of a few experiences. While working for the union, I came in touch with a lot of products, like solvents, that can affect your health. I have a touch of asthma; I had breathing problems, my heart would skip. Then my dad, who had also been around all those chemicals, died of leukemia. Who knows if that affected him. Not long after that, my fiancé and I had a baby, which further heightened my awareness of environmental health risks. Then I learned from a couple in our office, who have an autistic child, that they have chosen to use zero-VOC paints in an effort to ensure his health. That helped me to realize that zero-VOC paints are a good option for my family, my customers and my painters. Now it’s just what we do. I make it a point to inform my customers about VOCs. I ask if they have allergy issues or asthma, and tell them how VOCs might affect their breathing. And I share how even if they can’t smell VOCs, they are still in their home. I actively promote painting healthy nurseries for babies. We post photos of nurseries on Facebook mom’s groups and on Instagram. It’s not about, ‘Here’s a pretty room, buy it.’ We get more results
when we focus on people’s health. We ask, “If you’re about to have a baby, are you aware of the issue with VOC paints?” We also do direct mail. When we have a job coming up, I mail flyers to nearby neighborhoods. On one side of the mailer is a home exterior and the other will be something about ‘green’ or a photo of a healthy nursery. No one else in this area is using this approach. We push the marketing toward parents’ feelings and concerns for their children. That’s usually a pain point. They may not care for themselves, but if it’s for their child … To figure out if our campaign is working, I use PipelineDeals, a CRM system. For every incoming phone call, our receptionist asks callers how they heard about us. It’s usually through Google, a referral, or they are a returning customer. We also offer pressure-washing services using a safe, green detergent as often as we can. And we offer dustless sanding with a Festool sander and certified HEPA filters. While we promote the use of green products and methods as a benefit to our customers’ health, we also recognize the benefit to our employees. They shouldn’t have to inhale chemicals that aren’t good for them, and they shouldn’t have spackle dust all over their clothes and cars to bring home to their own families.
DIAL DOWN THE PRESSURE
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[ TRENDS ]
Who Makes What
REMODELS BOOM WITH BOOMERS
Painting contractor median hourly rate by job:
According to a recent report from the Joint Center for Housing Studies of Harvard University, remodeling expenditures by homeowners age 55+ are expected to grow nearly 33% by 2025. With that growth, boomers will hold a 56% share of market spending in 2025, up from 31% in 2005.
HOUSE PAINTER PAINTING SUPERVISOR PAINTER, CONSTRUCTION & MAINTENANCE INDUSTRIAL PAINTER LEAD PAINTER
$19.26 $17.18 $18.09 $19.77
$7 $14 NATIONAL HOURLY RATE DATA
SOURCE: Improving America’s Housing 2017: Demographic Change and the Remodeling Outlook
SOURCE: PayScale.com, May 2017
TOP ONLINE REQUESTS
These were the top painting tasks requested by consumers using HomeAdvisor.com and Porch.com between March 2016 and March 2017:
According to a report from Zillow.com, the following are some of the colors that actually drove home sale prices down when used in the spaces noted below.
KITCHEN: straw yellow/marigold
1. Painting the home exterior 2. Painting the home interior: 1–2 rooms 3. Painting the home interior: 5+ rooms 4. Painting the home interior: 3–4 rooms 5. Painting or staining small projects 6. Applying a concrete floor coating
7. Painting faux finishes 8. Painting textures 9. Removing paint from exterior or interior surfaces
DINING ROOM: red brick/terra-cotta BATHROOM: off-white
10. Painting a mural 11. Painting metal roofing
LIVING ROOM: pastel gray/light blue
12. Painting cabinets 13. Painting or staining a fence
Porch 1. Painting: 1 room 2. Painting: 2 rooms 3. Painting: 3+ rooms 4. Painting: interior miscellaneous 5. Painting: exterior miscellaneous 6. Painting: whole exterior 7. Painting: whole interior
8. Small painting projects 9. Deck staining and painting services 10. Paint removal 11. Door painting 12. Faux painting 13. Custom painting finish 14. Lead paint inspection 15. Texture painting
inPAINT | Jun/Jul 2017
TIME TO ADJUST YOUR ESTIMATES According to the IBISWorld 2016 Procurement Report: Painting Services, U.S. paint
contractors raised their service prices by 2.7% between 2013 and 2016. The continued rise of paint and coatings costs is expected to fuel an additional 3.1% increase in prices between 2016 and 2019.
[ TREND IN FOCUS ]
The Impact of Color on Home Sales Using color to drive faster sales
hen it comes to selling a home, first impressions matter. While the right color choices can have a potential buyer falling in love, a wrong color can leave them shaking their head and running for the door. According to Svenja Gudell, Zillow chief economist, “A fresh coat of paint is an easy and affordable way to improve a home’s appearance before listing. But if you want to sell a home faster and for more money, you have to do more than just paint a room. You need to choose the right colors and apply them across the whole home.” Connecting through color Michael Verderosa, a realtor with Latter & Blum Realtors, Inc. in New Orleans, agrees that the right palette choice can help sell a home. “A cohesive paint palette and decor theme is key to telling a home’s story,” he says. “You want the prospective buyer to feel comfortable moving through the space. That means avoiding jarring discrepancies in the presentation of paint color or decoration from one room to the next. Those kinds of shifts can lead potential buyers to focus on what they like or hate about the paint color, instead of focusing on the fundamental components and amenities of the house itself.” The downsides of extremes When prepping a house for sale, Gudell says there are two color no-nos to avoid: going too dark and going too white. “Dark colors, especially when used throughout a house, can make it feel small and confined,” she says. “It can be very off-putting to the potential buyer.” But, she says, playing it safe with all white can be just as bad. “White is hard on the eyes. Even if you have a small bathroom, it will help to paint it a light gray or
soft blue. The slightest tint will make the space feel more finished, inviting and fresh.” Emerging color preferences As pro painters can attest, beige and eggshell hues have long been the go-to neutral choice for wall colors. But according to Zillow researchers, change is afoot. “There’s a definite shift away from beige and toward hues of blues and grays,” says Gudell. “Both colors lend a modern and contemporary feel that today’s buyers like.” Another big color shift taking place is the move from yellow to blue in kitchens. Blue hues are showing up on both walls and cabinets, says Gudell. “Tuxedo kitchens with light cabinets up top and darker ones below are really making a comeback. Blue is a great choice, as it provides a nice contrast with quartz and subway tiles, which are also very popular right now.”
A well-painted house sends a signal to potential buyers that a home is well cared for—and that translates into confidence in the overall condition of the property. Talking color with clients Understanding the importance of paint and color to a home sale can be key to winning the job of getting the property ready for market. Pros can leverage the fact that most online views of homes take place during the first week of its listing to help drive customers to make a decision sooner than later. Plus, it never hurts to remind homeowners that a well-painted house sends a signal to potential buyers that a home is well cared for—and that translates into confidence in the overall condition of the property.
Find out more at
Jun/Jul 2017 | inPAINT
[ THE NEWS ]
No More Free Rides for Insects T In their quest to make aviation more
Arenas, Parks & Stadiums Solutions, Inc. Hits it Out of the Park for the Astros T When Arenas, Parks & Stadiums Solutions, Inc. started work
on the centerfield project at Minute Maid Park in Houston on February 25th, they knew it would be a challenge to complete the job by April 1, opening day. The NY-based company tackled the project with a crew of 20 that worked largely 12-hour shifts to paint the new grandstand, featuring tiered box seats and a new elevator. The crew used PPG Paints PITTHANE Ultra Gloss Urethane Enamel on the structural and ornamental steel features and PPG Paints Break-Through! Interior/Exterior Water-Borne Acrylic for more delicate surfaces, such as doors. According to Project Manager Anthony Foresto, the biggest challenge was attempting to complete the work with their boom and scissor lifts while eight other trades, many using their own lifts, were also knocking out work. “On any given day you had 150 to 200 people swarming over the 30,000-sq-ft space trying to do what needed to be done,” he says. And even when they thought the work was complete, there was more to do. “During the final inspection the day before opening day, it was discovered the handrails were 2" to 4" too low. A crew came in, grinded them off, raised them up, and re-welded them—then we followed up with more Pitthane. It was crazy, but we got it done and they played ball the next day.” T Sometimes, the toughest part about landing government APSSolutions2012.com contracts is finding out that they even exist. Thanks to the folks at GovTribe, that task just got a lot easier. Essentially an aggregator of government contracts, GovTribe sorts projects by the type of work required, including painting and wall covering, and gives you a snapshot of what’s up for bid. You can set alerts to learn about projects in any state, and gain insight into who has won this type of work in the past. GovTribe offers a free, high-level overview on its public page, and more detailed information through paid access, which runs $24 to $30 per month per
sustainable, NASA has turned its attention to the obvious problem: freeloading (albeit dead) insects. Turns out, avoiding insects during takeoff could help cut airline fuel bills and emissions by up to 10%. So NASA is in the process of testing a high-tech coating designed to make dead bugs slide off wings. As part of the testing process, NASA researchers are using a ‘bug gun’ to shoot bugs at 150 mph to try and mimic takeoff and landing speed. Researcher Dr. Mia Siochi of the Advanced Materials and Processing Branch at Langley and part of NASA’s ‘bug team,’ notes that the process isn’t perfect as, “the bug is moving and the target is stationary. In reality, it should be the other way around.” While they haven’t landed upon the perfect coating just yet, there are promising results with one coating, which is delivering a 40% reduction in ‘insect residue’—or splat.
Government Contracts at Your Fingertips
inPAINT | Jun/Jul 2017
user, with discounts for multiple users. Which, given the government spent $98.5 million on painting and wall covering in 2016, is a small price to pay. GovTribe.com
CLIPCALL’S PROMISE: More Customers, Less Effort T Launched in May 2016, ClipCall has managed to help more than 2,000
home-improvement pros land 20,000jobs—in many cases, without leaving their offices. “One of the keys to the app’s success is that the customer uploads a video of the work they need done,” explains Daniel Shaked, founder and CEO of ClipCall. “We match projects to the capabilities and coverage areas of different pros and give them the chance to bid. Once they say they’re interested, they’re connected directly to the customer, and we monitor and maintain a CRM pipeline that makes it easy for them to gather info, put together a bid, and track where different projects stand. Plus, all exchanges with the customer are recorded, so there are no disputes to be settled as things move forward or the job closes.” Currently available to customers in New Jersey, New York City, San Francisco Bay Area, Los Angeles and Orange County, ClipCall plans to expand into other markets, including Seattle, later this year. There’s no cost to become a ClipCall pro, but the company does collect a 10% service fee off the cost of all jobs. ClipCall.it/pro
Old-World Charm in an Instant
A LIFETIME OF
CLIPCALL LETS PROS PREVIEW JOBS TO SEE IF THEY ARE A GOOD FIT, AND RECORDS ALL CONVERSATIONS TO ELIMINATE FUTURE DISPUTES.
T Domingue Architectural Finishes made its
debut at the recent PDCA Expo with a visually compelling display of the company’s old-world plasters, lime washes, and mineral paints. Available in 140 color options, the rich and durable finishes contain no synthetic ingredients or chemical additives, and can make even new drywall look centuries old in just a few coats. Products are available online with a standard lead time of five business days. DomingueFinishes.com
Find out more at
Jun/Jul 2017 | inPAINT
[ WORK SMART ]
THE ART & SCIENCE OF SELLING YOUR
Maybe it was a passing mention that someone was interested in buying your company. Perhaps health concerns have you thinking of an exit. Or is it a nagging feeling that you’re just done? Whatever the reason, if you’re thinking of selling your painting business, know that it’s a journey that’s not for the fainthearted.
BY BRIAN SODOMA
About 80% of businesses listed for sale don’t sell, says Peter Holton, managing director with Chicago-based Caber Hill Advisors. Holton oversees Caber Hill’s construction, painting, landscaping, and facilities management division, offering valuation and business consulting insights for those looking to buy or sell service organizations. “Unrealistic expectations of the business owner are the main reason only 20% of businesses actually sell,” he said. Few business owners truly comprehend the reality check they’ll endure when selling their company. But with a willingness to listen, learn, and correct some deficiencies, it is possible for an owner to make a profitable exit.
Valu ation ? 12
inPAINT | Jun/Jul 2017
It starts with you Before selling, you’ll need to tend to your own personal financial and
emotional houses, starting with the question: are you financially ready to sell? Be realistic about what you want your retirement to look like. Talk to your spouse and a wealth planner about it, Holton says. If things look good financially, are you emotionally ready to let go of the company? For those who have been in the business for decades, letting go is harder than they think, according to Holton. “You strip that owner label off of someone and it’s a scar. It hurts. This is what they’ve done. This is what they’ve built,” he said. Get real about valuation When it comes to placing a value on your business, expect pain. This is where emotions and all business know-how collide. “A lot of business owners have never been through a transaction and it’s their baby; their biggest investment in their life. They can always look at it and say, ‘I think it’s worth X,’ but in reality, it is worth Y,” Holton added. The advisor helps his clients consider the transaction from the buyer’s perspective. “Would you honestly buy your own company for the asking price you want?” he offers. If the valuation seems low right now, you can make corrections to potentially sell at a later time, says Steven Denny, owner of O’Fallon, MObased American Business Network, LLC. “The best time to sell is when you’re riding the hockey stick; when growth really starts to accelerate.” Denny added. “We really love to work with a client who wants to sell in three to five years so we can chart the course to maximize business in that period of time.” There are many factors to consider when putting a value on a painting company. For Denny, it’s a case of looking at the last three to five years of financials, first. And don’t waste time talking about future projections, he adds. “Your price rationale is based on past performance. A buyer never buys based on future potential. Unfortunately, sellers often think they do,” Denny said.
What has it earned the past few years?
need to u o y o D ture? restruc
For many accountants, the valuation starting point involves looking at a company’s operating performance by calculating its earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA). For a smaller company, you can calculate the owner’s take-home pay for a year (salary and year-end profit), add in taxes, interest paid on debts, depreciation for assets, and even owner personal expenses paid by the business. It’s not uncommon for some analysts to assign a multiple (usually between one and three) of EBITDA for a valuation, Denny said. Denny’s company also offers a software product called The Value Builder System to help owners learn about valuation and even how to add value over time to their business. Beyond the numbers Other factors may help or hinder a business’ value. Expect to hear the following questions from an advisor when dealing with your company valuation: - What is your role in contracts? Some owners pride themselves in the relationships they’ve developed through the years and the contracts they’ve landed. But if those business deals hinge heavily on the owner being involved, he or she may damage the company’s value, Denny says. “I often ask, ‘are you the one who has the key relationships with customers or is it the staff?’ If it’s you, then you just handicapped your business,” he added. “This is a difficult concept for solo practitioners to understand.” If contracts are dependent on the owner’s involvement, Denny encourages them to take the time to restructure the business over the course of a few years, allowing others to control important contracts. Letting go of that control will add value to the company.
- What influence do employees have on business? Look closely at the relationships administrators or supervisors have with customers and contracts. For a high-value, customer-facing employee who an owner knows plays a key role in either production or sales, it may be a good idea to create a uniform agreement with the employee stating he or she will stay with the company for a certain amount of time to help the new owner in the case of a company sale. That employee may require a higher salary under the agreement, but it could be a shortterm expense that’s well worth it if it helps close a deal later, Denny adds. - How is your business structured? It’s important to operate under a business structure that is easily conveyable, Denny also said. Some older institutions may operate as a
SQUEEZE MORE OUT OF YOUR
About 80% of businesses listed for sale don’t sell. C corporation, which is taxed separately from the owners and tends to carry a higher tax burden. Denny advises switching to an S corp status in order to avoid tax penalties, but says it may be a couple years before a sale can occur. - What is the pool of buyers? If a company is valued at $2 million or more, the buyer pool is greater, as private-equity companies, venture capitalists and corporations tend to look for companies valued at this minimum or higher, Holton noted. That’s not to say that if a company has a lower value it won’t sell, but with fewer buyers, you might expect a potentially longer time frame for a sale. Tending to the details Denny offers a simple, three-step approach to selling a company: valuation, assembling a team, then a ‘get your house in order’ step.
Find out more at
Jun/Jul 2017 | inPAINT
Pull Off a Better Paint Job
all in the family
W.W. Nash & Sons, Inc. has been a significant commercial painting player in the Richmond, VA market since 1946. The company was also recently sold from the second to third generation of family operators.
For super sharp paint lines on
“We call ourselves the seniors and the juniors,” says Leslie Nash West, who serves as corporate secretary for the company and is a member of the new ownership team. Denny and Holton both say even if a business is being passed from one generation to the next, it still must be treated like a sale. For West, a CPA guided her family through the transaction, which took several months. Even though ownership has changed hands, secondgeneration family members still work for the company. “They’re no longer owners but, in my mind, they still are—even though the papers say different,” West said. “I have to say, the ‘seniors’ were good about stepping out of the way and letting us lead. … This felt like more of a rearrangement of roles.” For West, there were many unexpected details. For example, secondgeneration leaders had company vehicles. Today, as part-time employees, they use their own vehicles and log mileage. The family was transparent and honest about valuation conversations, though. In fact, the new generation of owners were involved in helping the exiting owners plan for retirement, factoring those retirement financial needs into the company
Use on walls, cabinets, floors, and freshly painted surfaces*
60-Day Clean Removal
*24-hours old ©2017 Home Depot Product Authority, LLC. © 3M 2017. All rights reserved. 3M, ScotchBlue and the BLUE color of the tape are trademarks of 3M.
inPAINT | Jun/Jul 2017
valuation, as well. Adds West, “I would tell people to be very open and honest with expectations and handle it with the utmost respect.”
Assembling a team may seem daunting, but it doesn’t need to be. In most cases, a business broker or CPA will quarterback the deal. Denny advises having an experienced transaction attorney, too. “You’ll have to find one. These are not typically the types of attorneys business owners work with on a day-to-day basis,” Denny added. Denny’s ‘get your house in order’ step has clients tending to commonly overlooked details like reviewing leases for equipment or real estate. Are they transferrable? If not, what needs to be done in order to change that? Any agreements with employees and among owners should also be reviewed, Denny emphasized. In some cases, owners
may have lent the company money and there could be outstanding debt that needs to be factored into the valuation.
“A buyer never buys based on future potential.” —STEVEN DENNY, AMERICAN BUSINESS NETWORK, LLC
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SURVEY SAYS RESULTS OF THE 2017 inPAINT ONLINE SURVEY Last month, we reached out to 40,000 online readers of inPAINT magazine’s monthly e-newsletter and asked their opinions on everything from their go-to paints and tapes to sprayers and rollers. We’re happy to share the results with you here, as well as a few of the comments they had to offer in relation to the survey questions.
TO ALL WHO PARTICIPATED IN OUR SURVEY Manufacturers want to know your preferences so they can continue to work toward building better products and earn your business. inPAINT thanks all participants for their valuable input. The following survey participants were randomly selected from all respondents to each receive a $100 Visa gift card:
0 Steve Blumert Blumert Painting Paradise, CA
0 Erick T. Gatcomb Gatcomb Painting & Design Hancock, ME
0 Bill Findlay WF Development, Inc. Birmingham, AL
0 Kevin Moran Love Interiors Concord, NC
0 Ken Forrest KDG Handyman Service Warren, MI 16
inPAINT | Jun/Jul 2017
QUALITY MEETS CONVENIENCE WE’RE POURING MORE INTO PROFESSIONAL PAINT SOLUTIONS SAVE UP TO 20% ON PAINTS, STAINS & PRIMERS
DEDICATED FIELD SUPPORT
UP TO FIVE YEARS OF COLOR HISTORY BY JOB
© 2017 Home Depot Product Authority, LLC. All rights reserved.
ABOUT THE PARTICIPANTS In order to help you better appreciate the survey responses, we asked all participants to answer a few questions about their businesses. For these questions, respondents could select more than a single answer, thus some percentage totals exceed 100%.
Who are you? Commercial & Residential
In which business segments do you work the most?
Which online platforms do you use most?
Residential: Single Family
Who provides the best customer service? Sherwin-Williams
Number of employees?
The Home Depot
1 – 5
6 – 10
11 – 20
21 – 50
Which marketing channels do you currently use? Referrals
Finding qualified workers
Managing expenses and payroll
Delivering bids in a timely manner 14% Other
Behr Process Corporation
How is your use of ‘green’ products trending? Steady
Over the next 12 months, what are you planning in terms of growth? Flat
What are your biggest business challenges?
inPAINT | Jun/Jul 2017
10% – 15%
16% – 20%
With high-quality products, professional color tools and project expertise, you can count on PPG PAINTS™ to deliver the results that make you successful.
KEEP YOUR BUSINESS AHEAD OF THE GAME BY VISITING PPGPAINTS.COM/PAINTER. The PPG Paints Logo & Design is a trademark and the PPG Logo is a registered trademark of PPG Industries Ohio, Inc. © 2017 PPG Industries, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
Readers’ pro brands of choice
Editor’s Note: For the purpose of this survey, product lines and brands such as Glidden, FrogTape, Sikkens, etc. are included under their manufacturer’s name, with a few exceptions. The ‘Other’ category includes all brands receiving a response less than 5%.
Preferred Roller Purdy
Preferred Sanding Equipment
Preferred Interior Paint Sherwin-Williams
Behr Process Corporation
Behr Process Corporation
PPG Paints Other
Preferred Stain Sherwin-Williams
PPG Paints Behr Process Corporation Benjamin Moore
11% 10% 8%
Preferred Tape 3M
inPAINT | Jun/Jul 2017
Preferred Paint Sprayer Graco
WAGNER 5% Other
Preferred Pressure Washer
Preferred Primer Sherwin-Williams
Many quality manufacturers fell into the ‘Other’ category in our survey, some earning very high praise along the way. We thought it was worth sharing a few pro choices for the best customer service: “Kelly-Moore Paints. Store employees are knowledgeable about the product and do excellent color matches. They know me by name. Sales reps are available to look at jobs and spec products, but are not pushy.”
Preferred Exterior Paint Sherwin-Williams
LET’S HEAR IT FOR THE ‘OTHER’ GUYS
DEWALT 11% Other
Preferred Work Vehicle Ford
“Dunn-Edwards Paints. They have great reps who let you try products for free, and they color match well … great customer service.” “Rodda Paint consistently delivers when it comes to pricing, in-store experience, and sales rep interactions.” “Diamond Vogel. Their delivery is second to none and most deliveries are made within 90 minutes.” “Allegion. They have a representative that aids in specification development through post-installation, including punch list and walk-throughs.” “Custom Building Products. They offer numerous mastics that are applicable in my various trades. Their service department and web site are accessible and staff knowledgeable.” -
THE LATEST IN
BY JAKE POINIER
inPAINT | Jun/Jul 2017
et’s face it: When you’re eager to lay down that first coat of primer or paint, cleaning up dust from drywall or sanding isn’t anybody’s idea of a party. The good news is that sanding systems—which incorporate a vacuum with a hand or motorized sander—continue to become easier to use and more flexible, and manufacturers continue to add options every year. The obvious reason for investing in a dustextraction system is that you’ll spend less time and energy on cleanup from surface prep. The immediate benefit comes down to dollars and cents. “If you can save one hour a day of cleanup, that turns into an entire month of time over the course of a year,” says Johannes Frick, head of business development/paint, at Festool USA. “As a contractor, think about how many more jobs you could do, how much more profit you could make, or how much more time you could spend with your family.”
The next factor is client satisfaction. “Once drywall dust is in the air, it’s on everything: light fixtures, light bulbs, switch plates, and the walls themselves,” says Corey Talbot, VP of marketing and product development at Hyde Tools, Inc. “Keeping your worksite clean is part of fulfilling the customer’s expectation of what the site’s going to look like—and you definitely don’t want a customer calling you to come back and clean up. That costs you time and money.” Finally, striving for a dust-free environment is safer for you, your workers, and your customers —particularly important since OSHA will be implementing its new respirable crystalline silica standard for construction in September 2017 (osha.gov/silica). Beyond government regulations, many are simply concerned about the long-term hazards of dust in the air, whether your customer is a homeowner, owner of an office building, a retail business, or a health care organization.
CHOOSE THE RIGHT SYSTEM FOR THE JOB It’s impossible to have one sander that excels at every task. Some are designed for specific applications, while others can handle multiple applications. Here are some considerations for choosing the right tool for the job: Assess the space and application. A wide variety of factors come into play when deciding the right sander for the job. Are you stripping down to bare wood, sanding between coats, or working on inside corners? If you’re working overhead, you don’t want to use a sander that’s heavy enough to make you unstable on a ladder or send you to the chiropractor. It’s also important to use the right size tool for the task. “You need to ask yourself what’s the biggest sander you can use effectively,” says Frick. “On an uneven deck with 5" boards, using a 6" sander isn’t going to work very well. On the other hand, if you have a doorframe and try to use a 6" sander, you’re not using it effectively and wasting a lot of the surface. Plus, since the pad isn’t fully in contact with the surface, you will create more dust.” The vacuum end of the equation. The top standard for filtration is a fully certified HEPA dust extractor, so that’s a must for the cleanest possible system— particularly when working with lead paints. Each manufacturer recommends different vacuum settings, so you’ll want to adhere to their specifications. For example, Kent Annis, owner of Full Circle International, Inc. recommends a 12-gallon vacuum with six to eight horsepower and airflow above 100 cubic feet per minute for their Radius 360° Air and FlexAir tools. Festool’s most portable mobile dust extractors, the CT MINI and CT MIDI, run at 130 cubic feet per minute. In addition, you’ll want to choose a system that allows you to regulate the airflow on the hose from the sander end of the system, not just the vacuum unit. If the airflow is sucking the tool to the surface, the friction will increase the amount of work you have to do as well as the odds of making swirl marks. Use a negative-air machine or scrubber. Even with a sanding system that’s 99% effective, some residual particles remain in the air and will eventually contaminate the environment. Scrubbers aren’t cheap, but if you do a lot of sanding, it may make sense to own one, or to rent one for a big job. Remember total cost of ownership. Sanding systems can be a significant investment, particularly at the higher end. But if you’re buying cheap sanders and going through a few of them a year, that can really add up. A better tool is going to be more efficient, more durable, and carry a better warranty—all of which saves you time and money. So, you owe it to yourself to run the numbers and see if a more expensive sander might end up boosting your profitability over the long haul.
“ IF YOU CAN SAVE ONE HOUR A DAY OF CLEANUP, THAT TURNS INTO AN ENTIRE MONTH OF TIME OVER THE COURSE OF A YEAR.” —JOHANNES FRICK, FESTOOL USA
Photos Courtesy of Festool, Full Circle International, Hyde Tools, Inc. (left to right)
71123 DT TREX 2017 InPaint HP ISL.pdf
©ShurTech Brands, LLC 2017/71123
Jun/Jul 2017 | inPAINT
IN THE MARKET FOR A SANDING SYSTEM? START HERE. Here’s a quick spin around some of the most popular sanding tools that painting professionals can use as part of a dust-free system:
THANKS TO NEW PRODUCTS AND INNOVATIONS FROM SANDING MANUFACTURERS, THERE'S A TOOL SIZED AND SHAPED FOR PRACTICALLY EVERY JOB.
Photos Courtesy of DEWALT (top), Hyde Tools, Inc. (bottom)
FESTOOL offers more than a dozen sanders in its lineup, with the unique aspect that all of them integrate with the company’s series of proprietary mobile dust extractors. One of the advantages of the integrated system is that turning on the sander also powers up the extractor system, saving time and energy climbing up and down a ladder, as well as decreasing run time. Among the most popular tools for paint contractors are the company’s Rotex multimode sanders, which come in a variety of sizes and power levels appropriate for anything from heavy removal and stripping to finish sanding. “The 3.5" Rotex RO 90 Multi-Purpose Sander is really versatile, since you also have triangle attachments for details, tight or inside corners, and around windows,” says Frick. “The ETS EC125/3 5" Random Orbit Sander is a great tool for painters because it has a low profile that gets you close to the surface, but it’s also economical, easy to use overhead, and can be used at different angles.” FULL CIRCLE INTERNATIONAL has two sanders that are particularly useful for painting contractors who want to minimize dust: Radius 360° Air and the FlexAir. The company’s patented swivel joint allows for both systems to be used by hand or mounted on a pole with almost any shop vacuum. The Radius 360° Air uses 8.75" sanding discs and can be used with the company’s new proprietary mesh disc. “We were contractors and we know the headaches drywall and painting contractors deal with,” says Annis. “With the Radius 360° Air, you could sand 2,000 square feet of level-5 skim coat ceiling and basically not get any dust on you.” For inside corners and detail work, the FlexAir is a rectangular sander designed to be used like a foam sanding sponge, using a hook-n-loop rubber and foam pad and proprietary foam abrasive.
inPAINT | Jun/Jul 2017
HYDE TOOLS, INC. first entered the dust-free sanding market with a basic sander and 4' hose that could attach to the existing hose on any vacuum. Today, the company offers five different dust-free tools, from a price point of $14 or $15 for a sponge sander up to around $110 for the Professional Dust-Free Pole Sander with an aluminum head and a pole that can be used at 28" or 8' lengths. (The two-piece design eliminates the inevitable binding that occurs over time from grit in telescoping poles.) Although most of the company’s products work with mesh sanding screens, the top-of-the-line pole sander uses a new, patented netting material. “With sand screens, a pattern can start to show up if you’re sanding in a direction for several swipes, so you have to use circular motion,” says Talbot. “This product eliminates that problem.” About three years ago, Hyde also added a universal adaptor that fits the three most common vacuum hose sizes—eliminating the need for duct-tape engineering in the field. DEWALT recently seized the moment to update its 5" random-orbit variable and non-variable sanders, as well as its quarter-sheet sander. (For heavier and quicker removal, DEWALT offers a 5" disc sander with a bigger motor and a dust shroud that can be connected to a vacuum.) “We made a lot of improvements over the previous models and they hook up to our 8- and 10-gallon vacuum systems as well to as other manufacturers’ units,” says Cindy Drnec, senior product manager at DEWALT. “The other big change is that we now have HEPA vacuums to connect directly to our sanders—you no longer need an adapter.”
SANDING: YOUR LAST LINE OF DEFENSE Sanding is inevitable. Although some painters are skilled at applying joint compound, the fact is that even the best will need to break out the sander eventually. “A drywaller isn’t going to come in to do a small 5' x 8' patch from water damage,” says Talbot. “Especially if you’re working above your head, it’s hard to get a good finish—you over-apply the mud and then rectify it with sanding. Sanding is your last line of defense, so it’s worth taking the extra time to go to a finer grit, and then look at the surface in different lighting and angles before you’re actually priming and painting.” Sanding can also eliminate headaches. If a drywall team has scarred the wall with power sanders to take off overspray from ceiling texture, the drywall fibers will be raised by the primer. A quick solution is scuff sanding. “Delegate the task to a rookie if you have to; the final product will show the benefits,” says Annis. Ultimately, a sanding system is designed to help professional painters to do their jobs more efficiently and professionally. “You want to know the numbers behind the tools, and their application as a craftsman,” says Frick. “In the best-case scenario for a painter, the only thing a customer knows is that the color of the wall has changed.” -
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SAVES BUSINESS OWNERS TIME & MONEY IN THE LONG HAUL As a painting business grows, it’s natural for an owner to be less involved with crews. From a business operations standpoint, that’s a good thing. An owner’s time is limited and, to maintain growth, he or she must focus on ways to build revenue instead of tending to day-to-day job details.
BY BRIAN SODOMA
hile a company grows, however, materials and application methods may shift for those in the field. Being in touch with coatings advances and how they affect a crew’s spraying capabilities, for example, is one important aspect to keeping crews completing jobs successfully and on time. For some owners, it may seem like a hefty expense to pull a crew and have it spend a day for sprayer training, but the move could save money in the long haul if more customers call back for repeat work instead of overspray complaints. Here’s a look at some common spraying challenges and how sprayer-training programs tackle them: Training, chemistry, tip technology Customer complaints and increasing job costs are the two primary drivers that push painting companies to call a time-out for sprayer training, says Scott Burt, cofounder/ co-owner of Prep to Finish, a VT-based training company that serves painting crews all around the country. “We hear from contractors who say, ‘we want to make sure everyone is on the same page,’” Burt said. Bob Zaffino, president of Medfield, MA-based The Paint Project, Inc., an industrial paint equipment sales and service business, says they just added a new 4,000-square-foot sprayer training facility to its business. Zaffino’s greatest demand comes from contractors with employees new to the trade.
inPAINT | Jun/Jul 2017
“They see it as imperative to have the newbie end user trained correctly,” he said. Burt says that through the years, with the shift toward low-VOC and latex or water-based paints, pros have had to shift some habits. With those changing formulations, a pro may need to prep the coating differently prior to spraying, or a different tip may be needed for a thicker or thinner coatings. Burt says one of the biggest game changers influencing spraying today is the use of low-pressure tips for airless sprayers. Chris Noto, director of products for WAGNER, which owns Titan, says its new ‘high-efficiency airless tip’ is not a low-pressure tip by HVLP standards, but it offers a considerably lower pressure than standard tips traditionally found on airless machines. If used properly, it can help minimize overspray. Titan sales reps work with local paint distributors to do hands-on training sessions to help paint store employees and end users understand the new technology. “It’s important for the end users and store employees to pull the trigger and actually see how it works,” Noto said. Titan works with coatings manufacturers in order to recommend the best tip for any coating. Mike Collins, Titan’s channel marketing manager, emphasizes that typical drywall spraying offers some leeway with the type of tip used. “People don’t really run into problems spraying latex on walls or the exterior of houses. It’s spraying cabinets and the fine finishes … that’s where you have to be smart about your equipment choices, tips, and your system,” Collins said. Zaffino says pros must also pay attention to tip wear. They may not realize it has a factor in overspraying or simply using too much paint on a job.
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Weather, data sheets Even with the correct tip, Zaffino says each paint requires a specific amount of thinner or special emulsion to better flow through spraying equipment. Also, some crews may not take weather into account; as temperatures drop, problems can arise. “A cold paint needs more pressure. It becomes thicker. If you’re not careful, you can start to see an inconsistent pattern,” he said. Nick Slavik, founder of Nick Slavik Painting & Restoration Co. in New Prague, MN, lets a coating’s data sheet be the ultimate guide. It helps him match the right tip to the coating and he makes it a point to follow the exact coating manufacturer recommendations. One common mistake pros make is rushing a second coat before the first one has had ample time to dry, or has dried as long as the data sheet recommends, Slavik added. “If you follow that data sheet, it’s sad to say … honestly, you’ll be better than 90% of the painters out there,” he said. Efficiency, technique, maintenance Burt often sees company owners invest in high-dollar equipment, only to have it used incorrectly or simply not maximize the payback. High-volume, low-pressure (HVLP) machines, for example, can help to reduce overspray by improving transfer efficiency, but may not be the best option for high-production situations with long runs of drywall, or exterior surfaces. With a lower atomization rate, the need to slow down could also frustrate a crew member who is used to spraying faster with an airless machine. “If you spent $2,500 on an HVLP machine with an $800 gun on it, but always used an $800 airless with an $80 gun in the past, you may be underutilizing the investment,” Burt added. While coating data sheets are a great guide, getting the right coverage and best overall look comes down to refining technique. “Mil thickness is really tied to how fast you’re moving [your pace], as we say… if you’re too slow, it’s too heavy, you’re too fast or too far away, it’ll be too thin,” Burt said. 28
inPAINT | Jun/Jul 2017
He emphasizes the importance of a trainer watching a painter, and narrowing in on specific technique problem areas. “In the field, the painter doesn’t have someone watching him so he doesn’t really see what he’s doing [wrong],” he added. Burt also says the type of gun can impact technique, too. Some inexpensive four-finger guns, for example, may be hard on crew members who spray a lot. “You do that for 30 or 40 hours a week and that’s going to impact your game,” he said. Some spraying problems are also tied to poor machine maintenance. Zaffino commonly finds clogged filters and pumps during trainings. A good training session is grounded in equipment basics and should show a team exactly what’s being overlooked with regards to maintenance and equipment troubleshooting, he added. He recommends using hot, soapy water to clean a unit after a job is done. Hot water removes paint better from manifolds, strainers, guns and tips. Online training option Online training options can be attractive as timesavers for busy painting-business owners. Prep to Finish recently launched an online training program: PainterTrainer.com. It allows busy owners to empower employees to train themselves through an online course with full support from Prep to Finish. The employee can then train other staff members. Noto and Collins say Titan is in the process of adding to its already large collection of company web site and YouTube tutorials. If online insights are the only option for a business owner, it’s better than nothing, according to Collins; but it may not be the best option for those new to the trade and without foundational knowledge. “At the end of the day, it’s always better to get your hands on the equipment,” Collins added. -
THE PAINT PROJECT HOSTS APPLICATIONS TRAINING SESSIONS AT ITS SPRAYER TRAINING FACILITY IN MEDFIELD, MA.
All Photos Courtesy of The Paint Project, Inc.
PDCA Residential Forum Presents
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FOUR PROS WEIGH IN ON THEIR FAVORITE SPECIALTY COATINGS BY STEPHANIE CONNER
Rusted metal roofing, high-traffic stadium floors, and tile that needs recoating; these are just a few of the project types that the pros featured in this issue’s Pro Picks had to contend with in the recent past. Read on to learn which specialty coating they turned to to tackle the challenge and get the job done right.
1 BESI JANOVA
W.E. Davis Co. WEDavisCo.com
Arenas, Parks & Stadiums Solutions, Inc. APSSolutions2012.com
2 WALT JOHNSON
Alpine Painting & Sandblasting AlpinePainting.com
inPAINT | Jun/Jul 2017
Joel Hamberg Painting JoelHambergPainting.com
1 BESI JANOVA:
With a focus on commercial work, the family owned and operated Alpine Painting & Sandblasting in Paterson, NJ, has been in business since 1975. Repaints are a big part of the company’s work, and specialty coatings have come in handy for a few specific needs, says Besi Janova, a commercial project estimator for the company. “We recently did a project where we had to recoat tile,” he explains. The Alpine team identified a special bonding primer—Rust-Oleum’s XIM Advanced Technology UMA Bonder—followed by a topcoat. XIM is known for its bonding primers, particularly for surfaces like porcelain, tile, glass, Formica, and others that are hard to paint. Available in white and a tintable base, the product works for interior and exterior jobs and is low VOC and low odor. “We’ve used that bonding primer for many years,” Janova says. “It’s worked very well for us.” Another recent project the company worked on involved rusting corrugated overhead decking. “The customer didn’t want to pay to get it sandblasted,” Janova explains. “So, we needed something that was going to hold back that rust.” For situations like this, the company’s painters like Sherwin-Williams Opti-Bond Multi-Surface Coating, a single-coat, rust-inhibitive alkyd finish designed for ceilings and overhead expanses. It dries quickly, Janova says, and is resistant to corrosion. “We met the customer’s needs and saved them money, too,” Janova adds.
Stay informed with inPAINT Teach to Fish eBlast “Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.” This wise adage served as inspiration for a new type of communication that offers industry professionals education and instruction they can learn by—and build on. Each month, we’ll present an industry-specific question and invite one manufacturer and two professionals to share their advice, giving you the benefit of a well-rounded conversation and multiple recommendations on the topic. Look for its debut this summer, and prepare to sharpen your skills.
inPAINT eNewsletter Expert insight for professionals, brought to you by inPAINT magazine as another way to help you stay informed and relevant. Our monthly e-newsletter delivers three articles to your inbox, each expanding on upcoming inPAINT magazine articles, and offering additional valuable information professionals find essential to continue to learn and grow. And because we’re constantly evolving, our eNews now sports a fresh, new look. Watch for it monthly.
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“… the drink vendors slide their trays down the rails. Most coatings can’t tolerate this kind of repeated abuse …
—ANTHONY FORESTO, ARENAS, PARKS & STADIUMS SOLUTIONS, INC.
3 ANTHONY FORESTO:
As project manager for Arenas, Parks & Stadiums Solutions, Inc., Anthony Foresto has had more than his fair share of experience with structural and ornamental steel. His top coating pick: PPG Paint PITTHANE Ultra Gloss Urethane Enamel. “It’s a 2-part urethane system that, in my opinion, retains its gloss and color better than any other product of its kind out there,” says Foresto. “When you go in a ballpark, you’ll see a lot of the drink vendors slide their trays down the rails. Most coatings can’t tolerate this kind of repeated abuse. But Pitthane holds up really well.” Another high-traffic surface Foresto tackles in his work is floors. “I like PPG Paint Break-Through! 250 Interior/Exterior Gloss Water-Borne Acrylic. It’s rated for forklifts so it’s super tough and durable. That’s the kind of performance you need in stadium and park settings, where hundreds of thousands of people come through in a single season.”
4 JOEL HAMBERG:
Photo Courtesy of Arenas, Parks & Stadiums Solutions, Inc.
2 WALT JOHNSON:
For 30 years, W.E. Davis Co. has been providing residential and commercial painting services to clients in Western Washington. Walt Johnson uses a range of architectural coatings, including interior and exterior paints, stains, clear finishes and specialty coatings. When asked to paint the interior of a veterinary clinic, he recommended an acrylic epoxy. “It needed to be chemically resistant (because of animal urine, etc.), and the walls needed to be scrubbable and washable so the facility could be kept clean,” he says. “Plus, you want acrylic vs. solvent so that there would be no harm to the people who work there, or the animals.” For this job and others like it, Johnson likes the Miller Paint Co. Water-Based Acrylic Epoxy (183-5-10). “You can use it on any sort of substrate, and as long as you pay attention to mixing ratios and induction time, it handles like paint,” he says.
inPAINT | Jun/Jul 2017
For Joel Hamberg Painting in Portland, OR, woodwork refinishing is a key part of the business. With a mix of residential and commercial work, Hamberg, who’s been in the industry for more than 30 years, places an emphasis on sustainable products—and for all the woodwork he handles, Hamberg is a fan of SamaN products, out of Canada. “It’s a very complete line—stains and varnishes and about 20 colors,” he says. “SamaN is what we use for handrails, kitchen cabinets and woodwork that’s been damaged or has faded.” The refinishing work, he says, is a simple process that seldom requires stripping the wood. And the SamaN products are fast-drying, he says, which helps him be efficient. “These products are great for furniture, cabinets, decks and more,” Hamberg adds. “And they make contractors money because they are of such high quality and help save you time.” Hamberg also works on a lot of historic buildings, which entails dealing with lead paint and abiding by the RRP Rule. For these projects, he turns to Rust-Oleum’s XIM Peel Bond High-Build Bonding Primer/Sealer—a water-based, penetrating bonding primer and sealer designed for both interior and exterior use. “It helps us deal with old paint without totally stripping it,” he says. “It’s a great product.”
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THE inPAINT INTERVIEW MANUFACTURER
Trends and Product Innovation SHERWIN-WILLIAMS EXPERT TALKS TECHNOLOGIES & OPPORTUNITIES
BY MEGHANN FINN SEPULVEDA ince 1866, Sherwin-Williams has supplied paint and coatings to homeowners and professional customers in the residential, commercial and industrial sectors. Today, the company has more than 4,200 neighborhood stores and 2,600 employed representatives in North America. Despite balancing market
shifts, economic changes, and product demand, what’s remained consistent over the years is the industry leader’s commitment to integrity, quality, performance, innovation and growth. Jeff Winter, VP of residential marketing for Sherwin-Williams, provided insight
existing products. I expect we will continue to see technology improvements in water-based coatings, including primers, which will evolve and outperform their solvent-based equivalents. From a business standpoint, we expect to see an increase in the Do It For Me (DIFM) population as opposed to the Do It Yourself (DIY) market, which will continue to remain strong. The DIFM market is a growing trend, supported by research conducted by the Joint Center for Housing Studies of Harvard University, especially for individuals in the aging population who are at a place in their lives where they can afford to hire professional contractors for home-improvement jobs.
on several innovations and shared his thoughts on the future role of paint suppliers.
BY MEGHANN FINN SEPULVEDA
During the last 10 years, what are the most dramatic changes you’ve seen take place in the industry? I believe product innovation and product performance have been the most dramatic changes in our industry, including the evolution of acrylic water-based coating technology and the recent introduction of single-based urethane for trim. These products perform better than solvent-based paint, are easier to use, and offer better color and gloss retention. Today, we’re able to get the same kind of resins in water-based products with equal levels of performance and durability as solvent-based paints. Whenever we can eliminate the solvents in a coating, it’s better for the applicator—and the environment.
What changes do you anticipate for the industry for the next 5 to 10 years and how might they impact the hands-on pro? Companies such as Sherwin-Williams rely heavily on customer feedback to tailor products, which go through rigorous testing to meet market demands. There is an ongoing investment in the research and development of new resin technologies that will lead to new products as well as enhanced performance in
inPAINT | Jun/Jul 2017
If you were to start a paint contracting company today, what markets would you pursue and why? For the last four years, we’ve seen residential repaint remain a strong market and we anticipate that trend will continue as the market improves and home values increase. Today’s homeowners are much less motivated by price than owners and decision makers in other segments. While cost is always a factor, greater motivators include the level of comfort with the contractor, and referrals from other customers. These jobs also mean quicker payment on projects for pros, along with the ability to maintain a more consistent cash flow. A secondary focus would be on custom home builders, which is like residential repaint because the lowest price is not always the determining factor.
What opportunities do you think pros should be focusing on for the next 2 to 5 years? When we look at opportunities that are often underutilized, I would recommend pros focus on increasing job size through add-on projects and painting new surfaces. This can be more profitable when bundling together than returning to perform additional services. We’ve found that a lot of homeowners are not always thinking about other projects besides the one in which they are seeking bids.
Pros should actively look at other areas on the site such as exterior fences or sheds that could be protected, renewed or updated. The challenge is that sometimes we get too focused on the owner’s initial job request. While it’s important not to lose sight of that request, contractors who make a concerted effort to include these suggestions in their business are seeing success.
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How is the movement toward green coatings going to affect the industry in the future? Is it going to be a big deal or are we seeing the bulk of its impact right now? We’ve already seen the traditional way we think about green products change. When a homeowner is weighing a decision about a product, they often want to know if it is good for the environment and their family. While zero- or low-VOC coatings are now common, the green movement is not just unique to paint, but also includes flooring and cabinetry. I think we’ve seen the bulk of the impact and these products are out in the market now. Our research has shown that homeowners today are making more conscious decisions about the space they live in and are more interested in selecting paints that offer a variety of new or unique technologies, including odor reduction, improved air quality, washability, moisture resistance, antimicrobial, and even microbicidal properties.
How do you see paint manufacturers delivering product or providing services in the future? When we look toward the future, we don’t believe there will be significant changes to the delivery of products, but rather to the interaction between pros and paint suppliers. While paint stores will still be the preferred outlet for pros, we expect to see online ordering and in-store pickup become more commonplace, which is a service we plan to introduce later this year. This will continue to improve the overall ordering experience and make the process easier for pros. Pros will have the ability to select products, check stock, place orders, and manage their accounts online on their own time, which often occurs at night when the paint store is closed. This gives pros flexibility to effectively manage their business and be successful. We always strive to be a partner with our customers and act as an extension of the pro’s business so he or she can be more successful. We also provide product and application advice, and offer white-glove service for time-saving benefits. -
Jeff Winter has been employed by Sherwin-Williams for 26 years. During that time, Winter has held various roles in sales and management, and now serves as VP of residential marketing. He holds an SSPC QP1 certification and a bachelor’s degree in business administration from The University of Akron in Ohio.
800-553-9053 www.mitm.com Jun/Jul 2017 | inPAINT
[ TOOLS OF THE TRADE ]
inPAINT | Jun/Jul 2017
in today’s professional toolbox? 3M™ Pro Series Safety Products It takes a certain kind of person to make it as a pro. To stand up to the demands of a 10-hour workday, to tough it out when things get hard, and to do it all over again the next day. That’s why 3M created a new line of safety products designed for the way pros think, the way they shop, and the way they work. 3M™ Pro Series Safety Products include respirators, eyewear, earmuffs, hard hats and safety vests. 3mSafety.com
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FESTOOL FestoolProducts.com Page 25
Mi-T-M CORPORATION MiTM.com Page 35
SHERWIN-WILLIAMS Sherwin-Williams.com Page 2
TITAN Titan-US.com Pages 7, 9, 11 & 13
[ UPCOMING EVENTS ]
WHAT, WHERE & WHEN O C TO B E R
J UN E 1
24–27: BOMA 2017 International Conference & Expo, Nashville, TN bomaconvention.org
25–27: Remodeling Show | DeckExpo | JLC LIVE, Nashville, TN remodelingdeck.com
N OV E M B E R
J ULY 2
27 & 28: SEBC, Kissimmee, FL sebcshow.com
28 & 29: PDCA AST Residential Forum, Cleveland, OH pdcaresidentialforum.org
Jul 31–Aug 3: NPMA National Education Seminar, Phoenix, AZ npmaconferences.org/nes
8–10: Greenbuild International Conference and Expo, Boston, MA greenbuildexpo.com
7 9 5 6
SE PT EMBER 5
13–15: CONSTRUCT, Providence, RI constructshow.com
19 & 20: Home Improvement Research Institute’s Insights Conference, Chicago, IL hiri.org
19–22: PDCA Commercial Forum, Banff, Alberta, Canada pdcacommercialforum.org
2017 PDCA Commercial Forum Conference SEPTEMBER 19–22, 2017
The PDCA Commercial Forum Conference will be held at the Rimrock Resort Hotel in Banff, Alberta, Canada. Held annually, the conference provides education opportunities for painting and decorating contractors who work in the commercial segment of the industry. The event will feature ‘Hot Topic’ roundtable discussions, peer presentations, networking opportunities, and keynote presentations. Optional outings include golf at Banff Springs on Wednesday, September 20th, and a bus tour of beautiful Lake Louise and the surrounding area the afternoon of Friday, September 22nd.
To learn more or to register for the conference, visit PDCACommercialForum.org 38
inPAINT | Jun/Jul 2017
[ BOTTOM LINE ]
Create a Business That Serves You I
f you are like most painting business owners, you put immense effort into your business. You serve customers well and you take care of your workers. But you, like many others, forget to serve the most important person in your business: You. Think about when you started your business. You probably started out with the idea your business would provide you financial independence. However, many painting business owners get caught up with running their day-to-day business, and lose sight of their original goal: Creating a business that allows them to prosper financially. How to create a business that serves YOU: 1) PAY YOURSELF FIRST This idea simply means you get your cut of the profits first; before expenses and labor. Simple idea. However, sometimes this is hard to start without the right strategy. One strategy is to use Mike Michalowicz’s Profit First system. Michalowicz recommends you divide your profit, salary, taxes, and business expenses into separate bank accounts. This allows you to keep your profits, salary, and estimated tax money separate from your ongoing business expenses, giving you a clearer picture of how much money you actually have to spend in your business, after you pay yourself first. This also makes it easier to stick to your budget and make more money. 2) MARK YOUR (EARLY?) RETIREMENT DATE ON THE CALENDAR The best way your business can serve you is by creating enough wealth for you to become financially free, and give you the option to retire early. JL Collins recommends in The Simple Path to Wealth that you save enough money so your savings pays you enough in interest per year without decreasing the principle. The first step is to determine your overall retirement savings goal. Multiply the amount of money you need per year by 25. For example, if you need $35,000 per year to live off of, you will need to save a total of $875,000 for retirement. Assuming a 4% return, $875,000 will give you interest of $35,000 a year forever. The second step is to find how much you need to save per year to reach your retirement savings goal.
Again, assuming a 4% return, you can hit $875,000 in under 20 years if you save $29,000 per year toward retirement. To determine how much you need to save toward your retirement savings goal, you can do an Internet search for a ‘compound interest calculator’ and use the online calculator for your own numbers. 3) PLAN FOR TAXES Now that you have a profitable business that allows you to save for retirement, you need to consider taxes. Luckily, the IRS has plenty of incentives for savings for retirement. If done correctly, you can avoid a large tax bill at the end of the year with a sound retirement strategy that incorporates tax planning. A great strategy to lower your tax bill is to put money in a traditional IRA. This allows you to delay paying taxes on the money you contribute until you withdraw during retirement. Here are a few retirement savings programs for businesses that offer the same tax-delaying feature as a traditional IRA: - No Employee Retirement Plan: If you are a sole proprietor or single-member LLC without employees, I highly recommend you consider the solo 401k. For 2017, the IRS allows you to save up to $53,000, or 25% of your business profit plus $18,000, whichever is greater. Up to these limits, retirement contributions are tax-deductible. - With Employee Retirement/Pension Plans: If you have employees, you should consider a SIMPLE IRA or SEP IRA. These programs allow your business to deduct any matching payments or contributions made to employees’ retirement. Plus, any funds the business owner contributes to their retirement accounts are not taxed until the business owner withdraws the funds during retirement. All retirement programs are subject to certain limitations and rules. Discussing these with your accountant or financial advisor is the best way to go before executing your plan. Bottom line: Ensure you set up your business to serve you. You are putting the sweat and tears into the business. Make sure you get what you deserve.
DANIEL HONAN is a former painting business owner, and current bookkeeper and tax accountant at BookkeepingForPainters.com. With both painting and accounting experience, he is uniquely positioned to help painting contractors save time and money.
Jun/Jul 2017 | inPAINT
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