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How to Choose Between Wallpaper and Paint

HomeEducationalHow to Choose Between Wallpaper and Paint

Both paints and wallpaper can offer winsome appearances within your commercial space. Let’s explore which one is a better option for your property.

The color and tinge of your commercial property are powerful tools that can dramatically transform your space’s mood, size, and ambience. Painting and wallpapering are two of the most widely popular wall adorning options for commercial projects that can illustrate the room just the way you want to set forth, but of course, with a number of benefits and setbacks.

But which one will you pick for your property? It’s not just an aesthetic issue but more about the structure of your building. When choosing wisely between wallpaper and paint, your requirements must play a decisive role.

In this article, let’s discuss some of the essential aspects and contributions of wallpaper and paints to help you make a decision.

Factor-1: Surface Preparation

Paint: Wall painting allows a quick and easy wall paint preparation process for commercial properties with larger surfaces. With the help of commercial painting contractors, all you have to do for newly plastered walls is prime them with a roller and let them dry before starting the wall painting job. However, to paint an old commercial building surface, you may have to clean the surface and sand the uneven spots before priming.

However, large-scale commercial wall painting preparation might require several tools and materials- depending on the surface condition and texture.

Wallpaper: Preparing a commercial interior surface for installing wallpaper can get a little tricky, especially if the walls are large with textured surfaces. Commercial painters generally start the surface preparation by removing any nails, hooks, or electric switch plates. Next, if walls have craters, holes, or bumps, you must sand the area thoroughly.

Decorative wall textures like popcorn walls may also prevent the wallpapers from properly sticking to the walls at all. So finally, you must consider applying a layer of joint compound or skim coat to level the surface area for the best outcome.

Factor-2: Ease of Application

Paint: Wall painting application is flexible and easy once the commercial surface is fully prepped. For larger surfaces, painters can use a painting roller to apply the paint mix. Then, using a wooden paintbrush for more precision and detail in smaller spots, they can paint their way down with smooth, linear strokes.

While the process of painting commercial building is straightforward, you have to give ample time and ventilation to dry the wall paint naturally.

Wallpaper: To install wallpaper in a commercial space, you have to choose the right wallpaper paste for stronger adhesion among many options like wheat, clay, and starch. You can use a high-quality paint roller cover to apply the wall paste. Once you properly measure the surface and apply the wall paste, you can start pasting the wallpaper from the corner panel, inch by inch.

A simple measurement mistake or application error can form air bubbles or crooked-uneven wallpaper. So, in other words, the wallpaper application process in a commercial property requires highly-skilled, meticulous contractor service.

Factor-3: Temperature and Moisture Resistance

Paint: For a high-moisture commercial area or humid environment, it all comes down to the type of wall paint material you choose. Low-quality water-based wall painting might lead to peeling, blistering flaking, or wall dampness. In contrast, acrylic or oil-based wall paint can easily withstand high moisture content and harsh weather conditions.

Wallpaper: Typically, wallpapering in highly humid areas is not recommended. However, with more upgraded materials and proper wallcovering, many wallpapers are now identified as moisture and mould-resistant- used in commercial kitchen areas, hotel bathrooms, etc.

Self-adhesive, fabric-backed vinyl, micro-vented vinyl, or PVC wallpapers are perfect choices for high-traffic, moisture-prone commercial areas for long-term use.

Factor-4: Expense

Paint: Cost is one of the primary driving factors when it comes to commercial decoration or renovation. In general, wall painting is a less expensive process- regardless of commercial or residential projects. Painting can be easily removed, resurfaced, and repainted as well. However, wall painting requires yearly touch-ups or more frequent maintenance than wallpaper.

Wallpaper: Modern wallpapers can make drastic changes in any commercial space but with a bit pricier deal. In Australia, the average cost of wallpaper installation per square foot starts at $2.8. Depending on various factors, wallpaper on a single wall can range from $200 to $600. But unlike wall paint, wallpaper is low maintenance and a more durable option for a commercial setting.

Factor-5: ROI and Resale value

Paint: Smooth and spotless bright wall paints have a timeless appeal to many, so much so that it increases a property’s resale value a lot more with higher ROI. Beautiful wall paint with warm, neutral colours gives off a good first impression to the buyers. In addition, the right colour scheme can make a cavernous room look cosier, and a smaller room looks bigger.

Wallpaper: Even with all the added benefits of installation or maintenance, wallpaper can potentially decrease the value of a commercial property. The aesthetic value of wallpaper is completely subjective, but wallpaper removal can also be expensive and damaging to the wall surface.

Even worse, to some buyers, wallpapers on commercial properties may come off as outdated, with a chance of faulty wall surfaces.

Final Verdict

Painting is a more common and widely accepted choice with more economic benefits, whereas wallpaper is more durable and easy to maintain. This means both options share a number of differences that may or may not work your way. So the most important part of making the right choice is to define your goal, budget, time, and skilled workforce.

And speaking of skilled workmanship, if your property resides in Sydney and requires industry-experienced commercial painting contractors for your project, you can explore an extensive range of services and request a free quote.

In the end, it is entirely an individual choice which one you will prefer; however, it is important to be objective when you are picking an option to adorn the walls of your asset. Also, you don’t really have to pick only one of them. You can use wallpapers along with paint, whichever combination fits your property the best.

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Emma Sneddon
Emma Sneddon
Emma Sneddon, a freelance writer and an independent blogger. I'm a polymath who is enthusiastic about anything related to tech, trends, travel and a minimalistic lifestyle. I mostly write about sustainable and alternative living solutions.


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