As facets of the residential real estate market continue to set records, a recent survey revealed that during a one-year period, homeowners reinvested about a third of funds generated by mortgage refinancing-about $18 billion-on home improvement. In addition, industry research shows that 56 percent of new homeowners paint their homes within the first year of ownership as a means of personalizing their living space. This increasing percentage is the result of current record-low mortgage interest rates, the do-it-yourself trend and increased disposable income.
The survey also found that interior painting is often the first thing homeowners do to personalize their homes upon moving in. Interior paint jobs represent a quick, fun and cost-effective way for homeowners to express their personal style, turning their house into a home.
"The survey findings tell us that consumers-whether they are new or existing homeowners- are turning increased attention to home improvement projects and paint is at the forefront of their minds because it is an easy and relatively inexpensive way to make a dramatic change," said Scott Richards, Senior Vice President Marketing, Behr Paints. "Our line of premium paint products and online color selection tools enable consumers to tackle those painting projects with confidence, and increase the value of their home."
The study predicts that the paint market will grow by 13 percent through 2007, driven primarily by the growing use of interior latex paints. Finish and durability are the most important characteristics considered when buying paint, followed by price, according to the survey. Semi-gloss, eggshell and satin finishes are becoming more popular among interior paints due to their ability to display richer tones. As you consider upcoming interior paint projects, following are a few tips in selecting the appropriate finish:
An interior flat finish conceals imperfections and has a washable finish; it is great for bedrooms, living rooms, dining rooms and home offices
An interior flat enamel is moisture resistant and scrubbable; it is excellent for kitchens, bathrooms, hallways, children's rooms, doors/windows and trim
An interior eggshell enamel highlights wall texture and has a scrubbable finish; it is good for dining rooms, bedrooms, hallways, interior furniture, cabinets and trim
An interior satin enamel is extremely washable and very durable; it is suitable for children's rooms, bathrooms, kitchens and laundry rooms
An interior semi-gloss enamel is extremely moisture and stain-resistant and lasts in high-wear areas; it is designed for kitchens, bathrooms, hallways, shutters, trim and laundry rooms
An interior/exterior high-gloss enamel features optimum moisture and stain resistance and is extremely washable; it is for bathrooms, kitchens, laundry rooms, doors/windows and cabinets
Manufacturers continue to work on technologies to make the paint selection process as much fun and as easy as possible. Behr Paints has spearheaded this effort. With the introduction of new paint hues, color selection tools and an interactive computer kiosk, ColorSmart by Behr, available at The Home Depot, helps take the guesswork out of color selection and coordination.
You can find more information at www.behr.com.
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