Devlin’s Painting: providing service to the Pittsburgh area for over 25 years

The Oracle is highlighting small businesses in Shaler Area to promote their importance in our community

Devlins Paintings logo on their website

Devlin’s Painting’s logo on their website

Throughout the Pittsburgh area, there are many small businesses that provide the city with goods and services that prop up the economy and make the area unique. They allow entrepreneurs to chart their own path, spark innovation in their fields, and create jobs. Even something like a painting business can bring joy to a community.

Devlin’s Painting was established in 1996 by Mike Devlin as a residential painting service, but it has since grown to a residential and commercial property improvement company. Along with painting services, Devlin’s company provides other residential and commercial services such as wood and drywall repair, exterior siding, pressure washing, property management, and other handyman work.

Devlin’s vision for his painting business began after he graduated from the Indiana University of Pennsylvania in 1991 with a degree in marketing and management.

“My parents didn’t save up for me to go to college so I had a bunch of loans I had to pay. Back in high school, I painted a couple houses,” Devlin said. “When I graduated from college, I wasn’t making enough money so I was doing side work as a painter, and it got to the point that I was making more money as a painter by myself than I was making as a sales rep for Nestle Foods. So, I just quit and started a painting business.”

He called the business Devlin’s Painting because of his commitment to customer service and the personal touch of having to represent his name on the back of his truck.

“All of my business is from word of mouth. My biggest advice I can give anyone is to have good customer service. Anytime anybody calls us we call them back immediately. Any time something needs to be fixed we fix it, even if it’s not our fault,” Devlin said. “I fix it because if I fix it you’re gonna be happy and you’re gonna tell your neighbors and your friends that I did so. That’s been working for 27 years.”

His commitment to customer service has served him well as his business has an A+ rating on the Better Business Bureau and has been accredited since 2010.

Devlin worked by himself for the first two or three years of his business before he started hiring employees. He has provided jobs for up to 26 employees at any given time since he started his business, and he now has five vans.

My biggest advice I can give anyone is to have good customer service. Anytime anybody calls us we call them back immediately. Any time something needs to be fixed we fix it, even if it’s not our fault.

— Mike Devlin

Devlin uses Sherwin-Williams and PPG Paints for his projects. He makes contracts with his customers and his suppliers listing out everything that needs to be done on their houses and what supplies they need. After providing proper documentation, his clients can be sure that the correct supplies are ordered and that they are satisfied with a job done right.

As a whole, small businesses were devastated by the pandemic. However, Devlin’s Painting was the exception.

“The pandemic made my business better. It drove all the people in the workforce to stay at home. That made them notice all the things in their houses that needed to be upgraded with painting projects,” Devlin said. “My business was better the year after the pandemic shutdown than it was the previous year. Doing painting projects increased the value of their home, which is how most people gain most of their wealth.”

Devlin has found success by following a passion and taking a chance on himself. For other entrepreneurs, what can they do to find similar success?

“If you wanted to start a company, I would suggest you apply for a job with a local successful business person within that industry and let them know what you want to do. I have had many guys that have come to me and say I want a job, but I want to learn the business because I want to go on my own. After about five years, when you absorb all the knowledge you can from that business person, then you can confidently go out on your own,” Devlin said. “There’s four people that have worked for me in the last fifteen years that own painting businesses, and we all stay in touch. When they need help, I help them out because the last thing you want to do is burn that bridge. Lastly, my last advice is that if you start a business, keep an open line of communication with that business owner because he is smart, he has been doing it for a long time, and he can always give you advice.”

If you are interested in Devlin’s Painting, you can visit their website at