10 Signs You Might Have Hired The Wrong Painter From Craigslist

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A few years ago, I impulsively ripped all of the blue wallpaper off the walls in our bathroom.


I started texturing the walls, but quickly realized I was in over my head with two little helpers in tow. So I turned to Craigslist to find a painter. Here are the 10 warning signs I missed.

10 Signs You Might Have Hired The Wrong Painter

  1. He shows up to your house in a 1970s van with flames painted on the side -- kind of like this one.
  2. flaming van
    Image: daveseven via Flickr

  3. Your neighbors call to ask you if you are okay after they see the van. You, reluctantly, reassure them that you are okay, you think.
  4. He's wearing cut-off denim short shorts and a stained, cut-off T-shirt. And a bandana.
  5. Although he assured you on the phone that he was very familiar with a particular sort of texture, he stands in your bathroom perplexed for a while, takes a smoke break, then returns to the bathroom and shrugs in a kind of "what the heck" fashion and begins.
  6. You mention that you will be installing crown molding after he paints and he says, "I can do that." Two days and two random buddies later, you end up with five pieces of crown molding spliced together in a four-foot section on the wall. (We later had to have it ripped out and redone properly.)
  7. When he shows up (late) on the final day of painting at 9am, he asks you for a beer to "make his lines straighter."
  8. He asks you to make out the check directly to the county and mail it there to pay his back taxes.
  9. He tells you that the paint color you chose is a great color for a bathroom … because it "looks like s*@t".
  10. You consider firing him the entire time he is there, but you are afraid of making him mad because he knows where you live now.
  11. You found him on a Craigslist ad that included a sob story about being a single dad and needing work. A couple of days into the job, you ask about his son and he tells you he doesn't have any kids.

It's funny now, but at the time it was scary, frustrating, and a waste of money. Always do your due diligence before hiring someone to do work in your home (duh!). Ask for references, and don't believe any sob story you read on Craigslist.

Have you ever experienced a remodeling horror story?



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