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Real quick, simple and easy:
Just curious if anyone has recommendations on interior paint to use for apartment complexes. The apartment complex in question is one they would call "the projects", if you know what that means...

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I’m sure there is someone who will chime in with more knowledge on these types of jobs than me but usually when there isn’t enough money in the client’s budget for a quality paint, I’ll reach for Promar 400. I’ve also used Property Select once on a big job wayyyy back. It was utter garbage but honestly not that bad for the price.
 

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Monarchski
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Real quick, simple and easy:
Just curious if anyone has recommendations on interior paint to use for apartment complexes. The apartment complex in question is one they would call "the projects", if you know what that means...

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Any apartment job I've ever been on all I've seen is Promar700 or that cheap flat PPG sells. Multi pro I think? If you have a BM dealer I'd ask for a price on Final Touch under the Coronado line. It's a much better grade of paint than the others and will be the closest price point product they will have. Touches up great compared to the other two I mentioned.
 

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Ultra Spec 500 vs BEHR Pro i300
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Ultra Spec by far. Ultra Spec is actually MPI rated as "high performance" like Regal and Aura are, at least in the eggshell sheens. Flat it probably doesn't matter and use whatever is cheaper, since Ultra Spec flat isn't a washable flat.

For a personal suggestion about painting in the projects, since I've been on some pretty low end jobs, one thing I think is there's kinda two strategies. Since projects usually have messed up walls with stains, soot, and general grime all over them, and lots of patching and repair work to do, odds are you're going to be using a lot of primer if you're trying to go anywhere close to "properly." (Which to be fair, a lot of people don't at all on those jobs...) So one strategy I've heard being done but never did myself is some people actually like using Duration or Emerald, or Regal, or maybe even Behr Ultra, just because while "paint and primer in one" is a myth, with a higher quality paint you can go over more problems and crap with less prep work, ie, markers, crayons, boot scuffs, would all need priming first, in a lot of cases with oil/shellac. So I always took the strategy of cheaper paint + lots of primer, but some people do like the more expensive paints in those scenarios, as it can allow you to "get away" with less prep, but it doesn't necessarily guarantee the outcome.

For what it's worth, I was told by someone at Lowes that my city's housing authority used to purchase pallets full of Valspar 4000, so more than likely any cheap flat + lots of primer will be the way to go. In my experience some of the newer latex primers can actually block stains, but they need to dry overnight and/or need two coats to do it. I personally felt like I had good success going over a bunch of soot in a very projecty kind of place I got kinda suckered into "helping" a friend with, with Problock latex and Zinsser Bullseye, moreso the Problock. I used the cheapest paint possibly in America right now, the SW white "Maintenance Paint" for $35 a 5er from Lowes and it turned out looking OK actually, though I used leftover SW Solo on the trim.

EDIT:
One other thing too is people are suggesting flats, but in a lot of low end places I've seen here, as in, very low end actual projects, I see more use of cheap semi-gloss or satin everywhere, even with walls looking terrible from bad patch work, etc. Reason being, easier to clean and nobody's really inspecting the walls looking for perfection. It looks absolutely nasty as you'd obviously think, but I think it's common. If anything you might see that kind of semi/satin on walls in hallways, and maybe flat or eggshell in the units themselves. It depends on the owner and all that obviously, but I don't know if you want to automatically assume everything will be flat. Still though, probably the ideal in that scenario would be a low sheen eggshell, so it looks almost matte but it's still relatively easy to clean but doesn't show as many wall imperfections, of which there will be many.
 

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It depends on whether youre color changing, or sticking with the same color. Also, whether you're spraying or rolling.

If your color changing and not spraying, the cheap stuff wont cover... if youre rolling the same color/sheen as before and its not too bad, use the cheap stuff.

if youre spraying, you can get away with cheaper products.
 

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The housing authorities around here use semigloss on everything. The private landlords seem to use flat. Maybe the government tries to just clean sometimes without painting.

Promar 400 seems to be the ticket, or something called property solutions. I'm not fond of 400 and I've never used the latter. I used ppg speedhide a few times, but I haven't done any projects like that in a decade or better.
 

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I’m retired now but worked for a property management firm and oversaw all wall repair and painting. We used the same color, an washable eggshell off white, for every unit, so we could touch up, only paint one wall, etc, when turning a unit around between tenants. it was a medium quality paint with above average solids, so it could better withstand scuffing and washing. Only cleaning a wall is much cheaper than painting…

we typically used simple green to wash walls. Often that was enough except for heavy wear areas, where patching and priming occurred. The eggshell allowed us to blend in without painting the whole wall, unless the area had reflective light that revealed the change in sheen. The cheaper the unit, the less attention to appearance. Clean, repaired, acceptable looking… Higher end units got semigloss trim, more careful patching. We might then use the highest quality paints and seek “perfection.”

By buying in volume, our paint cost was acceptable. we sprayed when painting a whole unit

Owners of rental units demand low maintenance costs. It’s a dance. We wanted a place to be clean, nice, and pleasant for the tenants yet acceptable in terms of cost.

We did not use the cheap contractor grade paints. They didn’t wash well or coat well. Using them meant repainting much more frequently.

we has used Sherman Williams paints until our local store had “issues” with service and pricing. Then we switched to Valspar products from Lowes, no less. Not great paint but workable. Our local store has a stable paint department that served us well.
 

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54pontiac
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Avoid Behr products. I picked up Behr ceiling paint the other day because it was convenient thinking ‘how could they mess up flat white’? The ceiling was already fine, just had a small patch. Well, it was so runny I not only got it all over myself but it somehow pulled out the color of the drywall so you could see all the mudding. A second coat did very little. I have never seen that phenomenon before. I had to prime and repaint with a better flat white. Four coats instead of one. Beware!
 

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Avoid Behr products. I picked up Behr ceiling paint the other day because it was convenient thinking ‘how could they mess up flat white’? The ceiling was already fine, just had a small patch. Well, it was so runny I not only got it all over myself but it somehow pulled out the color of the drywall so you could see all the mudding. A second coat did very little. I have never seen that phenomenon before. I had to prime and repaint with a better flat white. Four coats instead of one. Beware!
The Behr ceiling paint is more of a matte and not a dead flat. I've used it once and the ceiling looked a lot better when I redid the job 5 years later with SW Masterhide on the ceiling. Or are you talking about someone using yellow tinted mud and it reappearing as that, or something like that? Or old acidic paper bleeding through, etc?

This dude here had Pro i300 take 3 coats white over black as an extremely inefficient/bad DIYer with bad tools/no real idea how to paint with a brush and roller (he is a good automotive painter, though, what his channel is about.) At $25 a gallon and $115 a fiver it's pretty near my Promar 400 price in eggshell, PM400 for me being $24/$110. Behr is supposedly 37% volume solids and 400 is supposedly 34%. Both have the same MPI ratings.

It's for the projects, so I can't really see it as being that bad compared to anything else in that scenario.
 
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