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Hire a Local Paint Contractor vs a National Chain

So this is geared for those looking to help and work with local business. We are hoping this will inspire you to hire a local paint contractor. We are a smaller paint contracting business specializing in interior painting, wallpaper, and cabinet painting located in Huntley, IL.

Although we look to grow, we love the fact that we can help people living in our area, and help other business in our area, as well as some community groups and non profits in our area. 

 

350 project - Hire a Local Paint Contractor

 

The 3/50 Project

Save your local economy, 3 stores at a time. If half of the U.S. population spent $50 each month in an independently owned business, their purchase would generate 42.6 billion dollars in revenue. For every $100 at these stores, $68 returns to your community through taxes, payroll, etc. If you spend it with a National Chain, only $43 is returned to our community. If you spend it online, NOTHING stays here.

To read more about this go to www.the350project.net

Reasons to hire a local paint contractor

To be up front, we have done work for national chains before, as they usually will get contracts for other national brands to do the remodeling nationwide.

But that is a different subject…we are here to talk about hiring a local paint contractor. Some of the reasons we give are:

  • The people we hire are from this area.
  • Each person we hire is given background checks for local, state and federal backgrounds.
  • We train each person with the employees that have been rated by our customers as 5 star worthy!
  • Knowing your environment. We have had jobs sites with people from other states that don’t know how to fix drywall issues, such as smooth walls. (There are almost half of the US that uses texture surfaces not smooth walls.)
  • As with the 3/50 project, the money spent here stays here.
  • We have a vested interest to make sure we do a great job. We want your referrals and your repeat business. We’re not closing and moving to a different state when things get hard.

Use caution when hiring locally

We have given this example of knowing who you hire to our customers, but I don’t think we have ever put it on our blog/website before. While we were looking to hire a painter a few years ago, we interviewed a person that lived here in Elgin. Everything seemed good, until we did a Google search. His name and picture came up top of page- convicted sex offender. This same person had a bunch of people on Facebook that had left him reviews of great work, which is great for him, but as we’ll work in homes with all ages, by schools, home school families- we want you to trust the people that are working for us.

With that.. use caution on who you are hiring when you’re looking for a local paint contractor.

  • Are they insured?
  • Do they have workman’s comp insurance?
  • Who are they?

How can we help you?

Contact us or book an estimate on our website. We are here to help.

A message to our customers about COVID-19

In light of COVID-19, the following are measures that D’franco Painting & Wallpaper is taking to protect our employees’ and customers’ safety.

  • We are offering estimates virtually so we do not need to come to your home for 90% of the estimate process! Get an estimate from the safety of your home!
  • We are requesting that any clients who may be experiencing symptoms themselves postpone their quote appointments or scheduled projects.
  • Each of our crews and our office team are operating independently of one another to minimize contact. As such, our regularly scheduled weekly crew leader meetings are being held virtually for the foreseeable future. Employees with a business need to interact across teams have been instructed to keep at least six feet of physical distance from other team members.
  • Employees have been instructed to wash their hands often and to avoid physical contact with each other and clients as much as possible, including handshakes.
  • We are scheduling as many exterior projects as weather conditions will allow in order to minimize time inside of clients’ homes.

Our thoughts are with the community during this difficult time. While we are striving to minimize the financial impact to our team members and business as a whole, we are also committed to doing everything we can to protect public health and will update this page in the event of any significant changes. Our small business is reliant on a steady schedule of painting projects to stay viable, and we appreciate your support more than ever during these uncertain times.

Please don’t hesitate to contact us if you have any questions or concerns regarding this matter.

Tips for Finding or Creating an Accessible Home

Tips for Finding or Creating an Accessible Home

tips for creating an accessible home

Did you know that roughly 56.7 million people have a disability? When you’re looking for a new home that has the accessibility features you need to be comfortable and independent, you do have options. Keep an open mind, and be prepared to think of creative solutions. Know what to look for in an accessible house and think about the types of modifications you can make to the home to develop the accessibility you need.

First-Time Home Buyers

Are you a first-time home buyer? When searching for your first home, don’t start by looking at house listings. Before looking at homes, you’ll need to check your credit score, gather all the relevant paperwork for your lender, and get pre-approved for your mortgage. After you’ve set your budget for your new home, hire a real estate agent who understands your accessibility needs. Take into consideration any assistance programs that could help you purchase your dream home or help you make modifications to keep your home safe and accessible.

House-Hunting Tips for Accessible Homes

When house hunting for an accessible home, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed. Most homes on the market won’t be fully accessible, and even accessible homes may not be right for your unique accessibility needs. Accessible homes can vary widely in price, so set a budget to narrow your search, and avoid looking at homes that exceed your budget. Give yourself a lot of time when looking for an accessible house; as mentioned, many homes on the market aren’t accessible, and you may need extra time to find the right house. Don’t rush the decision or put yourself in a situation of having to move into the wrong home.

List All Your Accessibility Needs

When looking for an accessible home, make sure you know exactly what you need, and can describe it to a realtor. Make a comprehensive list of your needs, whether it’s things that must be in the home, or that you can modify later. When purchasing a home, think long-term, and consider your future needs as well as your present needs. You don’t want to move again in a few years, so look for a home that can accommodate your changing needs.

Think About the Neighborhood

As you look for your dream home, don’t forget to look beyond the house itself, and consider the neighborhood. Is your city accessible, and can you see yourself easily navigating around the community? Check for cracked pavement, poor parking spaces, or high curbs that can affect your mobility, and think about the nearest grocery store or community center.

Modifying Homes to Make them More Accessible

An accessible home should provide safety and comfort, as well as allow you to easily move from room to room. When searching for an accessible home, be ready to settle for a home that requires a few modifications to suit your specifications. Set aside a renovation budget, and plan to add or change certain parts of the home. For instance, an easy modification is adding an exterior ramp to the front door or modifying exterior thresholds to avoid tripping hazards. The bathroom and the kitchen are probably the least accessible rooms in the home, so consider modifying cabinets and shelves to be more accessible or adding grab bars in the bathroom for added safety and comfort. Add a counter or table in the kitchen you can work at while seated, and remove any carpeting that can decrease mobility or cause a tripping hazard.

If you’re a first-time home buyer looking for an accessible house, make a list of all your needs, set your budget, and work with an experienced real estate agent to find a home that checks as many boxes as possible. Also, don’t rule out houses that need a bit of work. Finally, if you can’t find the perfect accessible house on the market, consider the modifications you can make to create your dream home without going over your budget.

Recurring Wall Cracks

Do you have recurring wall cracks in your drywall or plaster?

One of the repairs we often have to make in homes before we paint, is cracks in the walls. Wall cracks happen for a number of reasons:

  • water damage
  • stress
  • improper installation of drywall
  • age
  • settling of home
  • improper previous repair

Hi! I’m David Cook of D’franco Painting & Wallpaper, and I thought I could share one of the most recent and difficult wall crack repairs we have to make. Old plaster.

Identifying wall cracks

It is easy to see cracks in your walls. The type of cracks, may not be easy to determine. For most cases, just call someone to look at your wall cracks to make sure it is not paint cracking, age, or a structural problem. In the video, you can see it is a pretty sizable plaster crack we are dealing with.

The house we were working in had a few issues that had big cracks.  There are not a lot of great tools for this but we found a great product-Plaster Magic.

They have a great vidoe as well on how to use it.

Do not be shocked at the cost for these repairs. You will most likely be dealing with lead paint, with old dusty areas of the house which can take a LOT of dust containment.  The process as we used it, was time consuming as well. So again, depending on the type of wall cracks you have, have someone come out to look at to see what you are dealing with.

Here is a pic of the plaster that we are repairing.

Using the Plaster Magic Kit

When we bought this kit, I underestimated how many pieces would be needed to fix the cracks. We still made it work as we were on this site several days.

  • The 1st thing we did, was clean the cracks. After using a shop vac to get rid of dust, we literally washed with soap and water as they were very dirty!
  • Next up was cutting the crack away of loose materials. There was enough of the wall that was solid but plenty of spots where the plaster was flaking off the wall.
  • We then pre-drilled the holes needed so the adhesive could be used in the cracks between the plaster and wood lathe.
  • After we drilled the holes, we caulked in all of the adhesive in the little holes.
  • With the adhesive in the holes, we used the provided screws and screw caps to secure the plaster to the wood lathe. This got tricky! It took us 4-5 screws to find the right amount of pressure the plaster/lathe/screw could hole with out one of them “giving” (broken plaster, broken lathe, broken screw) .      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0wa-7Cb4HHc
  • As per the the instructions we let things sit for 24 hours.
  • Once the glue was dry we scraped away the excess, and removed the screws.  It worked! Just as advertised.
  • All that was left was to get some 90 minute DuraBond to smooth out the walls. We sanded, the first coat, did two more, primed the walls and painted.

If we can get our video to load to YouTube we will get that in here.

Other ways to repair plaster

Another method to repair a hole or broken out plaster is to patch the area with drywall. This can be a pain, but it does work. This is another area that you should call a professional to have it looked at. There are different depths of plaster and drywall. Selecting the wrong one can make life a real pain in the butt. Why you ask??

  • Plaster can be 1/2 inch to 1 inch thick.
  • Drywall is 1/4, 1/2 or 3/4 inch thick.
  • If you try and put 1/2 drywall where there is a 3/4 inch depth- you will have to fill in 1/4 deep void of drywall mud. It may sound like it is not a big deal- but when you have thick layer of drywall mud, it will sag, then you have to cut out the droopy stuff to put in new. NOT FUN!

 

This blog is short- but it is a good one to get you some basics of a plaster repair- not too bad with experince of drywall, but nothing to be tackled by a first time repair.  We would love to hear how we can help you with repairs to you walls and or ceiling and help you love the space your in!

How to Hire a Paint Contractor Checklist PDF

Do you know how to hire a paint contractor?

Well, we have a checklist for you!

If you have been listening to our podcasts, we have been talking about hiring contractors for your home.

Specifically:

  • Painters
  • Wallpaper installers
  • Cabinet Refinishers

There are places to look, people to call, and things to consider.

Download a document we prepared:

How to Hire a Paint or Wallpaper Contractor

It is a checklist of things to consider when you need to hire a contractor. This is an ongoing issue for homeowners and people in commercial spaces alike.

Hiring a contractor checklist

You can listen to the some of our Podcast episodes as well:

These are a few places to hear what questions to ask as well as where to go to find the right help you need.

As always, we are here to help YOU love the house you live in. If you have questions about our hiring a contractor checklist, let us know (paintandpaperquestions@gmail.com).

Ugly Wallpaper Contest!

Do you like your wallpaper? Is it old and “ugly”? Have you thought about getting rid of that wallpaper?

Enter Dfranco Decorative Finishes Ugly Wallpaper Contest!

We have to thank the folks at JC Licht, in the Chicagoland area first of all. They have been supportive of our company by suggesting Dfranco for services such as cabinet painting, wallpaper removal, and wallpaper installation.

With the support of JC Licht, by the way of free paint and a gift certificate of up to $50.00 off a purchase of $100, we are hoping this will help your February be a little brighter-maybe even fall in love with your walls again?

Dfranco Decorative Finishes will offer up to 8 hours of labor to remove that ugly wallpaper!

How does the ugly wallpaper contest? IT IS EASY!!

  • 1st take a picture of your ugly wallpaper

  • 2nd go to the Dfranco Decorative finishes Facebook page. Click here for our Facebook contest page

  • 3rd Enter your photo

  • 4th SHARE THE PHOTO you entered

  • The more you share the better chance to win-the photo with the most votes wins it all!

ugly wallpaper contest - wall decals st. charles

So what is the catch?

  1. You have to have ugly wallpaper

  2. You must want it removed

  3. You must use facebook

  4. You must live in the greater Chicago area

This sounds too good to be true? Well, it is good and it is true. We want to be able to be your source for all your wallpaper removal and installation needs. We want to show you our great work! In short, we want you as our customer.  With award-winning service, great reputation and the Spirit of “love” in February-lets show those walls you hate some love!

 

If you have any questions about this contest, call us! 847-553-1726. Better yet? Send a picture over to our Facebook page!

D’franco Painting & Wallpaper Wins Outstanding Service from Angies List!

What do you look for in a painting contractor? How about an outstanding customer service award from Angie’s list? D’franco Painting & Wallpaper has now won the 2016 super service award from Angie’s List!

D’franco Painting & Wallpaper Earns Esteemed 2016 Angie’s List Super Service Award

Award reflects company’s consistently high level of customer service

D’franco Painting & Wallpaper has earned the home service industry’s coveted Angie’s List Super Service Award, reflecting an exemplary year of customer service to members of the local services marketplace and consumer review site in 2016. Read on to see why we received an outstanding customer service award!

This achievement is particularly significant as Angie’s List experienced unprecedented member growth in 2016. More than 1.6 million consumers, many of whom were eager to quickly hire highly qualified service pros, joined Angie’s List after the company added a new, free membership tier.

“Companies that can meet higher demands without missing a beat in their exemplary performance standards truly do stand apart from their peers,” said Angie’s List Founder Angie Hicks. “Only a fraction of the Painting and Decorating companies in Chicagoland area and Suburbs were able to do it.”

Angie’s List Super Service Award 2016 winners have met strict eligibility requirements, which include an “A” rating in overall grade, recent grade, and review period grade. The SSA winners must also be in good standing with Angie’s List, pass a background check and abide by Angie’s List operational guidelines.

“We are honored and grateful to earn this award. We take each job with the intent of having fun, earning a customer’s trust, helping each customer create the look, feel and space they are looking for. We ask for reviews from every customer and are blessed when we receive them. I want to thank all of our past customers for their trust and words of kindness, we look forward to keeping that trust and having the opportunity to serve them in the future.”          

– David Cook, owner D’franco Painting & Wallpaper      

Service company ratings are updated daily on Angie’s List as new, verified consumer reviews are submitted. Companies are graded on an A through F scale in areas ranging from price to professionalism to punctuality.

For more than 21 years, Angie’s List restricted access to its verified reviews to consumers who paid membership fees. When the company removed that barrier, some companies worried that the new, nonpaying members would not be as engaged as members of the past. Experience has shown, however, that these newly added members are just as engaged – across all age groups – as prior members. Also, because the company continues to adhere to its review verification process, there has been no degradation of review quality.

“The biggest change at Angie’s List is that we are connecting even more consumers to high quality service professionals,” Hicks said. “And that’s good for everyone.”

Thanks again for the reviews! We look forward to growing with you and finding a way to help you in your decorating, painting, and wallpaper ideas for 2017!

Call 847-553-1726 or text us today to get your FREE estimate and get started on your new project!

D’franco Painting & Wallpaper wins 2017 customer service award from Houzz!

Best of houzz 2017 Service Award – D’franco Painting & Wallpaper

Thank You, Thank You, Thank You!

2017 houzz best logo - dfranco wallpaper murals - 2017 Houzz Award

Thanks to you – our amazing customers – D’franco Painting & Wallpaper has won the “Outstanding Customer Service” award from Houzz for the second year in a row!

When we go to work to paint your home, install wallpaper, refinish your cabinets or paint a wall mural, we strive to do our best. We enjoy what we do. We are very good at what we do. I love the fact that our customers trust us to be in their homes. An award like this is one of the perks of our job!

Here is a copy of the announcement from Houzz:

D’franco Painting & Wallpaper of Elgin, IL

Awarded Best Of Houzz 2017

Over 40 Million Monthly Unique Users Nominated Best Home Building,

Remodeling and Design Professionals in North America and Around the World

Elgin, IL (Kane County), January 17, 2017 – D’franco Painting & Wallpaper of Elgin, IL has won “Best Of Customer Service, for the 2nd year in a row!! on Houzz®, the leading platform for home remodeling and design. This painting, wallpaper, and decorative artisan company was chosen by the more than 40 million monthly unique users that comprise the Houzz community from among more than one million active home building, remodeling and design industry professionals.

The Best Of Houzz is awarded annually in three categories: Design, Customer Service, and Photography. Design award winners’ work was the most popular among the more than 40 million monthly users on Houzz. Customer Service honors are based on several factors, including the number and quality of client reviews a professional received in 2016. Architecture and interior design photographers whose images were most popular are recognized with the Photography award. A “Best Of Houzz 2017” badge will appear on winners’ profiles, as a sign of their commitment to excellence. These badges help homeowners identify popular and top-rated home professionals in every metro area on Houzz.

“We’re so pleased to award Best of Houzz 2017 to this incredible group of talented and customer-focused professionals, including D’franco Painting & Wallpaper,” said Liza Hausman, vice president of Industry Marketing for Houzz. “Each of these businesses was singled out for recognition by our community of homeowners and design enthusiasts for helping to turn their home improvement dreams into reality.”

Follow: D’franco Painting & Wallpaper on Houzz

About Houzz

Houzz is the leading platform for home remodeling and design, providing people with everything they need to improve their homes from start to finish – online or from a mobile device. From decorating a small room to building a custom home and everything in between, Houzz connects millions of homeowners, home design enthusiasts and home improvement professionals across the country and around the world. With the largest residential design database in the world and a vibrant community empowered by technology, Houzz is the easiest way for people to find inspiration, get advice, buy products and hire the professionals they need to help turn their ideas into reality. Headquartered in Palo Alto, CA, Houzz also has international offices in London, Berlin, Sydney, Moscow and Tokyo. Houzz and the Houzz logo are registered trademarks of Houzz Inc. worldwide. For more information, visit houzz.com.

We are so grateful for this award! We look forward to continuing to deliver outstanding customer service to all of you in 2017!

Where Did The D’franco Name Come From?

When

Where or how did a company come up with their name has always intrigued me. I never thought about how D’franco came about would be of interest to anyone, but that is what I get for thinking.

About 9 years ago when working for myself as “A Painted Wall” I had to make a needed stop for gas. As I was pumping gas in my van, another painted pulled up aside from me. We shared a quick smile and nod. After paying my bill we said a few hellos, talked about what we were doing for work, shared in the struggle of finding help and a light bulb went off. Frank Capra was his name.

Origin

We ended up having a few phone calls, then decided to work together on a few jobs to see how things went. Frank was miles ahead of me as a Faux Finisher, but was patient and led me to take some classes at Chicago Institute of fine finishes. After taking some classes, then working some more together we decided to team up. It was Frank driving in a car that came up with merging David and Frank adding a CO (not sure if that was for Cook or Company) and the name D’franco was born.

logo - dfranco painting wallpaper

So if you call because you want an Italian painter, sorry I am Far from Italian. My mother is from Ukraine, and my father is a little more mixed. The first Cook in our family was brought here as a slave to work for his fare to come to the US. He worked several more years to pay for his wife to come here. John Cooke then worked as a farmer before “joining” the south in the civil war, was captured, then was “asked” to be part of the North’s efforts. After the civil war, he was involved with the American Indians, Cherokee, that lived in the Virginia Appalachia Mountains.  Past family members include tribe members of the Cherokee people as well as other People who came to America for a new life.  So English, Ukrainian, little Native American, and a lot of other American and you have David Cook of D’franco Painting & Wallpaper.

Why Does your House Look Chaulky?

We get a call once and a while on the exterior of a home looking chalky, pasty, or white streak marks down the siding. What is it, what is it from and how to fix it are great questions that I called out Sherwin Williams Representative Jason Leonard

David: Ok Jason, what is chaulking in a house?
Jason: Chaulking by definition is the Formation of fine powder on the surface of the paint film during weathering. It can cause color fading. Some degree of chalking is a normal, desirable way for a paint film to wear, but excessive film erosion can result in heavy chalking.

David: What will cause it?
Jason: there are several reasons and or causes
• the previous use of a low-grade, highly pigmented paint.
• Using an oil-based paint. (These tend to chalk more than latex formulations).
• Aluminum siding can develop an excessively thick chalk layer and will require power washing to ensure complete chalk removal.
• Use of an interior paint for an outdoor application.

David: So what is a good solution to get rid of it?
Jason: Remove chalk by washing siding with detergent and water or by having it professional power washed. If some chalk remains after first washing, then wash again for complete removal. Rinse well with clear water. Allow to dry thoroughly. For the best resistance to chalking, use a higher sheen such as satin or gloss. Brick areas that are stained by “chalk run-down” should be scrubbed with a stiff brush and detergent. Professional Cleaning may be required to remove this staining.

David: What would you use to paint over it once cleaned?
Jason: I would Recommend 2 Coats of a Premium grade Exterior Latex Paint such as our Duration paint line.

Thanks for the help Jason, if you have any questions about the full line of Sherwin Williams exterior stains or paints, Jason can be reached at 630-669-6523.

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