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Material costs usually only make up about 15 to 20 percent of the total price of a paint job, so this is not a good area to skimp to save money. Oil based paints are not what they used to be and manufacturers have come a long way in developing latex paints. Some use high quality, 100percent acrylic flat latex from a manufacturer that only sells paint for the body and trim. Some prefer low-sheen or semi-gloss enamels because they easier to keep clean. Just remember that enamel should not hold up any longer than flat latex, and the higher the gloss rating, the more noticeable surface imperfections and rough wood will be.
Having invested in a good quality paint, don't attempt to "stretch" the coverage. Paint quantities are figured on the square footage of the surface area to be painted. Paint will cover between 200-350 square feet per gallon, depending on how rough the surface is. Smooth lap siding will take less paint than a textured stucco, for instance. An average 1,700 square foot single story house will take about 25 to 30 gallons for the body and three to four gallons for trim.
Again, this is not a good area to skimp to save money. The amount of paint used will directly affect how long it will last.
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