Start the fun part of your painting project with the soffits and eaves.
Once you have the prep work out of the way, you are at the easy part of the job. Painting is easier than preparation -- and more rewarding. When you begin to put the paint on, you begin to see the results of all your color planning and preparation.
Exterior painting is fairly straightforward from an organizational point of view. The order of the work proceeds from top to bottom. Not only does this keep spatters from marring fresh paint (if you had applied it from bottom to top), it also gets the most difficult details out of the way first.
What to do with the guttering is always a perplexing question on an outside paint job, and the answer is always "remove it." Even if you're not painting the gutters, you need to paint the fascia that supports it. Slipping the brush between the fascia and the gutters will not get the paint where you need it to protect the wood.
From 1 to 2 hours for every 25 linear feet, depending on the skills of the painter and the amount of ornamentation
4-inch brush, 2-inch tapered sash brush, corner roller, 9-inch medium-nap roller
Priming and painting trim, working from ladders or scaffolds, intermediate painting skill
Scrape, repair, and prime damaged wood, clean surface thoroughly
High-quality primer and paint
Raise your ladder until its rests solidly on the house below the soffit. Position the rungs so you can paint all parts of the soffit without overreaching or unnecessarily tucking your head under the soffit. Cut in the edges of open areas, then fill in between them.
Paint the horizontal section of the soffit first, then apply paint to the sides and faces of any corbels or other decorative elements. Don't forget to paint the backside of any vertical boards or fascia that trim the soffit. You won't see these rear surfaces, but they need the protection of the paint.
Starting at the top, apply paint to the front and bottom edge of any cornice or fascia. If you find you can't reach this area comfortably, come down from the ladder and adjust its height. If you have to reach too far, you will apply the paint unevenly. Move the ladder to successive unpainted sections.
If your house has been built since the 1950s or 1960s, your soffit design probably will not have much adornment, which will make painting easier. First cut in all the edges you can comfortably reach, including rafter extensions. Then brush-paint joints or seams in the soffit facing.
Keeping the ladder centered on the wall, move it down a couple of boards and paint them from one side to the other. If you have to overreach, move the ladder to one side or the other.