First, prepare the surface you wish to paint. Scrap, patch, sand and fill all holes and other surface imperfections or areas of unevenness. This stage is vital because it allows you to have a smooth result at the end of your painting job. If you do not adequately prep your wall, all imperfections will be immediately obvious under a new coat of paint.
Prime your walls and ceilings before painting. Priming prevents stains from showing through your new coat of paint and, therefore, allows one coat of paint to give your surface adequate coverage. Priming also allows paint to adhere firmly to the surface you are painting, which in turn limits peeling in the future.
Buy canvas drop cloths to place under the surface you are painting. Canvas, rather than plastic drop cloths, is a much better option because they absorb any dripping paint to limit messy slipping. Canvas drop cloths are also advantageous because they are apt to lie flatter than plastic drop cloths and are more durable and resistant to ripping.
Make use of an extension pole for a paint roller rather than relying on a shaky stepladder to reach higher spots you wish to paint. Find an extension pole with a soft, nonslip grip with a rigid, metal pole that will not bend when extended.
To make your painting job easier, use a paint grid, rather than a paint tray. A paint grid hooks onto the edge of a bucket, which can be filled halfway with paint. The grid can then be used to remove excess paint straight back into the bucket. This minimizes waste and is a neater option than paint trays.