New Power Washing Division part of Ville Painters, Inc.

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Have you walked outside your home or property lately?  The seasons can take their toll on exteriors, leaving them dirty and lowering curb appeal. Breathe life back into your outside environment with Ville Painters’ power washing services! One of the most interesting reactions I receive when discussing power washing is “I didn’t know you guys did that”. 

Since this is part of our standard cleaning process prior to repainting, we do this on almost every exterior project. We have the craftsmen, systems, equipment, and experience to open up a new market for Ville Painters Inc., our Power Washing Division. This spring we will be offering our client base and many new customers reliable power washing services for their exterior surfaces. Whether it is cleaning siding, patios & walkways, around the pool, garage floors, we will clean up your space! 

We are developing and further training a team dedicated to this vertical market and intend to roll out this division sometime in April.  Meanwhile look for further information coming your way reminding our loyal client base that we offer this service.

Through an electronic estimating system, out team will be able to go out and meet with you to look at the project and measure for a cost estimate. The dimensions along with a visual of what ladder setups will be needed help to project costs with a high degree of accuracy. It is an opportunity for us to broaden our client base and have them enjoy the same “extraordinary experience” that we offer our painting clients.

Take a walk outside in the next few days (especially on your North facing elevation) and see if we can provide you with this new service. If while we are there, you have some other things for us to look at, we would be happy to work with you on any projects you are considering.  Call for a free estimate soon though, our Power washing team is also responsible for cleaning our painting projects and those are about to break out soon!

NOTE:  With regards to wood and aluminum siding, certain preventative measures and controlled application must take place to ensure we do not esthetically disturb the surface. Some surfaces simply cannot be cleaned without affecting the finish. For example, it is likely that an older, oxidized and chalky aluminum surface will not clean evenly. Also, wood siding that is showing signs of loose, peeling paint may not be washed without consequence. 90% of what we typically would power wash does not fall under “compromised” substrates.  We do have the ability to touch up, and even “face-off” those areas if revealed when the washing operation is complete.

Recharging the “Batteries”

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I just got back from the Painters Academy 3rd annual Painting Profits Summit.  This year the conference was in the beautiful city of Chattanooga, TN. There were over a hundred innovative business owners and influential industry leaders. While I was in the “classroom”, my wife Christy was able to visit museums and walk around the waterfront.  In the evenings we enjoyed the Southern Charm of the unique restaurants and very good craft breweries. If the opportunity presents itself, I strongly encourage Chattanooga as a destination to visit. 

The great thing about conferences is that they get your batteries recharged. With the economy on the upswing, the mood was much different than events like these from 10 years ago when everyone was reacting to the challenges of the recession. People from all across the country congregate to learn, share ideas, and re-connect. 

There were several take-aways for me this year. The most rewarding was that I was able to share much of what we do as a customer service oriented company. That seemed to be the universal theme – providing an exceptional experience for you, our customers. This included ways to incentivize employees to go the extra mile in providing stellar service. There were so many ideas from companies of all sizes and from various geographic markets. These ideas were all designed to develop the relationship between the client, painters, and the office.  The biggest byproduct is the morale of the field because they see their role is vitally important to the success of the company.

Some of the other highlights were social network marketing, email campaigns, and technology solutions to streamline the process from “first call” to the final walk-through and beyond.  When I was on the “Hotseat” presenting my company to the audience, I was asked to share what had the biggest impact in my business over the past 30 years. My response was very clear after having spent 2 days in this high energy, trade specific conference.  It was my involvement over the years in organizations and conferences like this. The ideas, systems, and passion for excellence we share with each other brings so much value for me to share with others, helping them grow as customer service professionals.

Steve’s Monumental “Aha” Moment

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Last evening I was having dinner with my wife reviewing paperwork for a Painting Contractors Summit I’ll be attending in Chattanooga beginning Thursday. Each attendee will have a chance to share “their best secret” or “aha” moment.  It should be something that had a monumental impact on the way I conduct business.  Initially, I was citing consistent customer contact and pursuing positive social media reviews, but my wife suggested going a little deeper.  We were asked to select three, flush them out, and then pair down to a single answer supported by examples and potentially handouts for the others in the group to gain new insights. 

We discussed exactly what things have truly impacted the way we conduct ourselves as a company.  It really was vital to have someone helping, who knows me so well and is able to remind me of events that occurred over the last 30-plus years. After much thought, here are the three things that we believe truly impacted Ville Painters and has made us what we are today.  These are not in any order of importance because I have yet to decide which one is the most important.

  1. Consciously leaving the late ‘80s / early ‘90s new home construction game to seek out more niche’ markets. We were doing very nice large custom homes for some of the best home builders in the area.  The problems would begin to pile up. Scheduling issues –from the job not being ready for us, which naturally led to having too little time for completion because the move-in date never seemed to change.  We would have to work longer days and even weekends to avoid interference from other trades.  Also in order to keep up with the housing boom, I hired more people than I wanted to manage, leading to employee and quality control issues. After being stiffed for $20k (back in the 90’s that was difficult to overcome), I consciously decided to leave the game and focus on repaints and historic preservation. This decision was encouraged by an industry peer group I was involved with for many years.  It allowed me to shrink my crew size and attracted a higher caliber craftsman.  It changed the trajectory of my business and helped to build a brand for quality and customer service.
  2. Hiring an Operations Manager was another one of those “aha” moments.  While I had production managers over the years, it never seemed to be a steady position. I began to think about my own situation and how my college bound son had expressed interest in becoming involved with the company. I felt the need to build a structured business that would allow someone joining to have goals and support. One day searching through the internet, I stumbled across “Rocket Fuel” for your business.  It was a cartoon-based on the book by Gino Wickman and Mark C. Winters. It is based on the Entrepreneurial Operating System, a business method outlining how companies need a visionary and an integrator.

After watching that video I began the search that led me to my current situation. My Operations Manager allows me the time to work on strategic initiatives, business development, and helps me in the sales arena.  It has truly propelled my business to the next level and has created a sense of “organization”, allowing for growth and the expansion of office staff to accommodate growing sales.

3. The final option to consider as “most impactful” are the peer groups and organizations I have joined over the years.  Growing up in a family where my mom & dad were actively involved in all sorts of civic groups and social clubs, it seemed natural to “get involved”. I first joined the Home Builders Association (HBA) as a way to meet contractors and procure work. I joined the Painting & Decorating Contractors of America (PDCA) as a way to learn more about the products and processes. The unexpected consequence of both of these organizations were the relationship developed and sharing of information that occurred. Employee issues, regulatory concerns, marketing strategies, among other things were rigorously discussed. This gave me a taste of what other business leaders go through. I learned more in my first year of membership than I did in all my previous years in business. I found the key was to be active. I served on several committees, presided on local and regional levels, and chaired national committees. The next step on the ladder was joining peer groups. I was involved in one industry related group for over a dozen years. After a few years of non-involvement, I was invited to join a local business group and have gained even more insight, being the smaller fish in the pond. The key to success in these organizations in to constantly be pushing and challenging each other. You must caution yourself from going over the same old ground or becoming a “mutual admiration society”.

Now my challenge is to pick the one I think is THE MOST IMPACTFUL for my presentation Friday.  I am hoping to make my decision on my flight to Chattanooga. But it was wonderful having this discussion with my wife Christy, who was named “Vice President of Inspiration” back in the early 90’s!

Interior Painting Techniques

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Using good painting techniques is key to achieving professional-looking results. Another tip is to use enough paint. Get into the habit of going to the paint can often. Let the paint do the work, and you’ll save time and get the finish you want.

Using a Brush

1. Hold a brush near the base of the handle.

2. Dip half the bristles into the paint and tap on the lip of the can. Don’t wipe it on the side.

3. Paint with enough pressure to bend the bristles slightly — don’t bear hard on the brush.

4. A 1″-2″ brush offers good control so it is well-suited for detail work such as cutting in around windows or painting molding. To apply paint to larger surfaces such as doors, use a 3″-4″ brush.

Using a Roller

1. Roll the roller slowly into the paint in the tray. Then, roll it back and forth until roller cover is evenly coated with paint.

2. Roll onto the tray’s ridges to remove excess paint.

3. For smooth surfaces: Cover about a two-foot-square using the N pattern shown. Cross roll to spread the paint. Finish, with light roller strokes in one direction, at a right angle to the cross roll.

4. If the surface you are painting is porous or textured, use a heavy-nap roller cover (1/2″ or more). Use a 1/4″ nap to maximize sheen on a smoother surface.

Painting Double-Hung Windows

1. For double-hung windows move each sash to the center of its track and paint the inside sash, starting with the crossbars. Then, paint the frame. Don’t paint the top edge of the inside sash; you’ll use it to move the sash. Next, paint the top half of the outside sash, starting with the crossbar, then the frame.

2. Close the sashes to within several inches of the closed position. Paint the rest of the outer sash and the top edge of the inner sash. Paint the window casing, then the sill.

3. Paint the check rails. Move both sashes down as far as they will go, then paint the upper rails. Once the paint is thoroughly dry, move both sashes up and paint the lower rails of the window.

Casement or Awning Windows

1. Open the windows and paint the top, side and bottom edges.

2. Finish with the crossbars, frame, casings and the sills.

Paneled Doors

1. First remove all hardware or cover it with masking tape. If paint does get on metal parts, wipe it up immediately with a soft cloth.

2. Start by painting the panels, working from top to bottom. For each panel, paint panel molding first, then the interior, using up and down strokes with your brush.

3. Next, paint the rest of the door, finishing with the outer edges. If the door swings out, paint the hinged edge. If the door swings in, paint the lock-side edge.

Flush Doors

1. Paint the edges first.

2. Then fill in the center area, working from top to bottom.

3. Finish with the frame and jamb.

Types of Stain to Use for Fiberglass Doors

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Fiberglass doors are great additions to the home because if they are maintained they can last for decades. They are durable and can be bought with a wood grain, thereby giving off the the elegance of wooden front doors but with the durability of fiberglass. As you change the look of your home the front door usually has to change with it. One of the problems associated with fiberglass doors is picking the right stain to use in order to refinish them. There are several stains that can be effectively used on fiberglass doors with great results and other stains should not be used on fiberglass doors. The following information will layout which stains is best used on fiberglass doors and which ones are not.

Gel Stains

Many people that stain fiberglass doors as part of their job often use gel stains with much trepidation. Even though manufacturers say it gel stains work on fiberglass, there are some problems with them. Stains work because they have something to latch on to and bond to the door. Fiberglass doors are made to not accept added moisture, which is why they make great doors. Gel stains are very fickle and require great care to apply to fiberglass doors. The main trick to applying a gel stain is to follow the instructions precisely thay are on the can. The directions for gel stain application can vary depending on the manufacturer so do not assume all gel stains are the same.

Oil-based Stains

This type of stain is probably the best for fiberglass doors. In addition to the stain, you will always want to seal it with a layer of polyethylene. However, when you do, make sure the polyethylene is also oil-based. Not every oil-based stain on the market will do the job of covering fiberglass doors. It has to be high quality so do not cut corners by using a cheap brand. The stain also has to be opaque in nature. Stains that are transparent or semi-transparent will not work on fiberglass doors. The last thing that you need to make sure of is that the oil-based stain is heavily pigmented. The stain needs to be able to grip to the fiberglass.

Exterior Stains

Since fiberglass doors are used for exterior use, you need a stain that is made for that purpose. It should meet with the other requirements of stains for fiberglass doors. This means that the stain should not be semi-transparent or transparent but opaque. You’ll also need to look at the UV rating on the stain as UV rays cause doors to fade in the sunlight.

Semi-transparent and Transparent Stains

Stains that are transparent or semi-transparent cannot be used on fiberglass doors that aren’t textured. The idea behind these stains is that they add a layer of color to a wood door so that the natural grain can still be seen. Fiberglass doors do not have a wood grain or a porous texture that can absorb the stain. However, some of these can be used with an undercoat.

6 Color Palettes That You are About to See Everywhere in 2019

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Ever wish you could peek into a crystal ball and see what decor trends are headed your direction? We do have a little insight into what colors are going to be dominating homes everywhere. With six unique palettes of inspiration, it goes a long way toward telling us what 2019 is going to look like. Each palette evokes a mood and a personality, with a cool mix of bold accent hues and versatile neutrals to make the look work in any space. Thinking of painting soon? Consider this your cheat sheet for 2019.

1. Rich Blues and Golds: This combo has definitely been on our radar, ever since the explosion of dark cabinets and brass trim hit kitchens earlier this year.

2. Maximalist Greens, Reds, and Yellows: Minimalists, your time is drawing to a close. The fun factor of maximalism, with its bright and cheery prints and super-saturated shades, is just too good to resist.

3. Tropical Greens and Pinks: Another score for our ongoing plant obsession! “The Naturalist palette is a posh take on muted and nature-inspired neutrals, with blossoms of floral pinks, yellows, and deep greens

4. Elevated Neutrals With Character: Neutral lovers, rejoice! The latest neutrals reside in the mysteriously murky taupe family, with subtle tinges of purple bringing just the right alluring character to these shades.

5. Muted-yet-Moody Pastels: Pastels are for grown-ups too. Airy purples and blues stay grounded with the help of some richer hues, lending a glam feel to the entire effect.

6. Worldly Earth Tones: Eclectic is the name of the game here. Earthy clay tones draw inspiration from handcrafted souvenirs and special travel finds.

Exterior Home Projects You Should Think About Now Part 3

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If you’re like most people, you always have a home project either on deck or in the works. But when summer turns to fall, the focus is usually on the exterior of our homes because we want to be sure things are squared away before the weather turns. These types of exterior projects fall into to three basic categories: 1)  painting, 2) carpentry, and 3) power washing.

Power Washing 

There’s nothing more satisfying that watching that built up dirt, mold and mildew get washed away! A professional power wash is a key step in preparing your home for exterior paint, but it’s also great for cleaning natural wood siding. A deep water clean will dramatically improve the visual appeal of your home, simultaneously preventing the growth of new mold and mildew. It even removes those unsightly balck streaks from asphalt roofs.

We use an environmentally-safe combination of bleach & Jomax. A low pressure wash is usually used to clean your home’s exterior; a high pressure wash is used when removing peeling paint and heavy growth of dirt and mildew which is commonly found on roofs and decks.

Exterior Home Projects You Should Think About Now Part 2

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If you’re like most people, you always have a home project either on deck or in the works. But when summer turns to fall, the focus is usually on the exterior of our homes because we want to be sure things are squared away before the weather turns. These types of exterior projects fall into to three basic categories: 1)  painting, 2) carpentry, and 3) power washing.

Carpentry

Painting is only part of what we do. Ville Painters Inc. offers complete carpentry services. Exterior work that can be done this time of year might include:

  • Exterior trim & rot repairs
  • Shingles & siding replacement
  • Replacing or installing new clapboards or rake boards (the edge of a gable roof that gives it a finished look)
  • Inspecting the caulking and seals around windows to make sure they are weather-tight

Exterior Home Projects You Should Think About Now Part 1

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If you’re like most people, you always have a home project either on deck or in the works. But when summer turns to fall, the focus is usually on the exterior of our homes because we want to be sure things are squared away before the weather turns. These types of exterior projects fall into to three basic categories: 1)  painting, 2) carpentry, and 3) power washing.

Painting

You may have heard that fall is not an ideal time to paint the exterior of your home, since the temperatures can fluctuate so much from day to night. But fall can be a great time to paint outside. There are excellent products (such as Sherwin-Williams Resilience®) that allow you to paint down to 35° F – and even the threat of rain or dew will not slow down or delay the job because it is specially formulated to resist moisture. With these advances, the painting season can be extended for a month or more.

That being said, there are a few guidelines to follow to help ensure the success of a fall exterior painting project:

  • Make sure all surfaces are clean and dry before painting
  • Prime fall painting hours are 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
  • Start painting on the sunny side of the house first
  • Understand that the time between coats of paint may be longer – lower temps mean slower drying times

Even if you don’t have time for a full-blown exterior painting project, you can still give your home a face lift by doing some touch up work. Applying a fresh coat of paint to just the trim will still make a big difference in your your home looks.

LOCAL PAINTING COMPANY, VILLE PAINTERS, INC. CHEERS TO 30 YEARS

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LANCASTER, PA – May 2, 2018

Lancaster-based painting contractor, Ville Painters, Inc. is celebrating 30 years in business. Three decades have passed since Steve Dietrich opened his company in Millersville, PA, initially hiring ambitious college students, hence the name ‘Ville” Painters.

Fast forward to 2018, the company has grown to a staff of 18, including 14 craftsmen. In the early days, Dietrich hired college students but quickly shifted to professional painters to provide the high quality clients expect. Ville Painters also looks towards the future by providing internships to Career & Technology Center students as they prepare to enter the workforce.  He attributes their success and staying power of his family-run business to superior workmanship, commitment to customer service, and cultivating strong relationships with clients and partners. Ville Painters now serves the needs of hundreds of businesses and residents across Central Pennsylvania.

To celebrate, Ville Painters hosted a 30-year anniversary “thank you” celebration for clients, partners, and friends at the Lancaster Country Club last week. The event featured a towering paint can-inspired cake, branded chocolates by Evans Candies, hundreds of job photos, and ended with Dietrich donating $3,000 to Schreiber Pediatrics.

“Although much has changed in thirty years, one thing has not – and that is our dedication to serving our clients and community to the very best of our ability,” says Dietrich. “I deeply value the relationships we have built over this time… relationships with our teams, clients, partners, friends, and the greater business community. We could not have realized this milestone without their support, and see this anniversary celebration as a small way to express our sincere gratitude.”

The future looks bright for Ville Painters as they strive to diversify and expand their services, continually train their staff, and grow their clientele. “Thirty years in business is just the beginning,” says Dietrich, who looks forward to the next generation joining to reach even higher goals and aspirations.

About Ville Painters, Inc.

Ville Painters, Inc. specializes in commercial and residential painting for both interior and exterior spaces. Our experience and craftsmanship, coupled with our attention to preparation and detail has continued to develop our reputation as professional painters and ever-growing client listing.

Services Provided

  •  Interior/exterior painting
  • Drywall & Plaster Repair
  • Hot Plaster Remedies
  • Water Seal Basement Walls
  • Water Damage Repair (We will work with insurance companies and service companies.)
  • Mildew Proofing Bathrooms, Kitchens & Laundries
  • Cathedral Ceilings
  • Decorative Finishes
  • Wood Staining
  • Color Consultations
  • Accent Trim & Carpentry

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For media inquiries, please email lydia@villepaintersinc.com.