Painting contractors: How much should painting cost, or should you DIY?

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You could probably paint your house if you wanted and had the time and equipment necessary. But maybe you should just look at painters. How do you find them and what should you pay for? Three things affect the cost:

  1. Square footage of the area to be painted
  2. Architectural features that can make painting easier or more difficult
  3. The quality of the materials and work you want

Expect more for a room with designer suede paint and faux paintwork. Or a four story exterior with a lot of order to get around.

Check your new plan (December 16, 2020)

Don’t be Jack the Dripper

You might want a $ 200 million original Jackson “Jack-the-Dripper” Pollock on your wall. But you don’t want its signature drops to drip, run and splash underneath – in the color that covers this wall.

It is not particularly difficult to achieve the smooth, clean, and precise surfaces that you want. Indeed, some homeowners achieve ones indistinguishable from those supplied by professionals.

However, relatively few do this because they lack the patience to do the best work possible. You’re cutting corners and ignoring three main rules:

  1. Before touching the paint can, prepare the surfaces thoroughly and appropriately – and carefully mask or cover anything you don’t want the paint to touch
  2. Invest in Quality Products – With primers, paints, brushes, rollers, etc., you get what you pay for
  3. Educate Yourself – You can’t hope to get what you want if you don’t understand the processes involved. Get tips from a knowledgeable friend. And it’s not a bit sad if YouTube is your friend

Related: Home maintenance is essential to maintaining the value of the property

Follow these three rules and you can do a great job. Even so, it is unrealistic to believe that you will do it in the time it takes a professional. Someone who has worked with every type of color and surface every day for many years knows immediately what each situation requires. And will have acquired all the tricks of the trade to do a great job quickly.

For many homeowners, the smart move is to bring in a professional. But it won’t be cheap …

Check your new plan (December 16, 2020)

How much do painters charge?

Painting companies charge $ 2,775.

Hoax! Of course, as explained above, there are endless variables that will affect the price you will pay, including where you live. If that’s somewhere with a high cost of living, your guess will be above average. This is because the painter’s cost is also higher.

Related: Hassle-Free Selling With Full Service Home Preparation

Fortunately, sites like,, and have made some serious efforts to come up with some national averages for painting company costs. Adjust these averages to take into account your location, the size of your home, its age and architectural features, and the measures you want to take.

If you mix up the numbers of these websites you will learn:

  • That $ 2,775 is the average cost of painting the exterior of a house in 2018, according to HomeAdvisor
  • Painting an interior costs a little more (maybe 10 or 20 percent) more – all of those interior walls mean extra surface. And there are doors and baseboards for covering and floors and furniture for protection
  • For outdoors, the material your siding is made of makes a big difference – metal siding is usually the cheapest and stucco the most expensive, with vinyl and wood in between
  • PaintingLeads estimates that painting the exterior of a one-story, 1,500-square-foot house would cost $ 1,500 to $ 2,300 – and the inside would cost $ 1,800-25,000
  • It calculates it will cost $ 4,000 to $ 6,000 for the exterior of a three-story, 4,000-square-foot home – and $ 4,500-7,000 for the inside

Expect about 80 percent of your bill to go to your painters and the rest to materials. Fifty-five percent of that usually goes straight into work and 25 percent goes into “malup markup”.

What is “painter’s fee”?

A painter who only billed you for labor and materials would soon go bankrupt. Painters have to bear the cost of running their business – and make a profit.

Some contractors report these costs and profits as a painter’s fee. In theory, this is the revenue the company makes from purchasing the paint and other materials you need and may include trade discounts from suppliers. In practice, this may not always be the case.

Related: Best Home Improvement Loan: How To Find It And Pay Less For It

Don’t get into it too much, however. When comparing quotes from different equally reputable contractors (and you want at least three), focus on the bottom line. After all, you shouldn’t really mind if, why, and how the quote is broken down. Some give a single price with no breakdown.

Of course, you’ll still want detailed specifications and materials to quote. You need to know exactly what you are getting. Otherwise, you cannot make valid comparisons.

Find good painters

If your state or county licenses painting licenses (and not all of them), you should choose a licensed one. You also want one that is insured for all types of liabilities, including employee compensation. Ask for the documents. After all, no one who has it will mind showing it.

The best way to find a contractor is to get referrals from homeowners who have recently used one. They want to find out more about their reliability, work ethic and professionalism, as well as the quality of their surfaces.

Even if you have a recommendation, do your due diligence. Start with a background check. Search the Better Business Bureau website and your local licensing department’s complaint database.

Related: Complete Guide to Building a House

Also, do a general internet search on the name of each contractor in case there are less official complaints uncovered. Once in touch, ask each candidate for references from clients who have done work similar to your project. Then give them a call to ask about their experience.

But what if you can’t get any personal recommendations, or enough? Just google “painter in [your zip code]. Then work through the list, giving preference to those who specialize in the types of projects you need. You can do your due diligence before making any calls, but you still want references at some point.

Make a shortlist of at least three candidates and receive a detailed offer for each. And don’t hesitate to negotiate.

Do it yourself

Like many professionals, painters make their job easy. You may have seen a couple of people remodel your neighbor’s house in a day or two and thought, “A breeze. I could do that. “

And maybe you were right. But take a break before you start …

DIY questions

  1. Is it worth dying for? There are more than 300 deaths (and 164,000 emergency room visits) in the US annually as a result of ladder accidents. Most deaths are due to falls 10 feet or less
  2. Will I poison myself? – If the existing paint is before 1978, it likely contains lead. You need specific advice
  3. Will i finish this – Some people finish every task. Others hardly complete anything. You know who you are. Remember, a half-painted house is a serious eyesore
  4. I know what I’m doing – of course YouTube can help. However, you need to identify the surfaces that you want to apply paint to before you can access the correct instructional videos
  5. Will I have the patience – if you take pride in the entirety of your life, will you really invest the time and effort in properly preparing surfaces and getting the details and surfaces right?
  6. Am i ready to buy quality paints and tools? – No matter how good a home improvement you are, you will find it difficult / impossible to achieve professional finishes if you cut corners
  7. Is this the right job for an amateur? – Professionals are used to working at heights in larger houses and know how to safely use ladders on sloping and uneven surfaces. Conversely, amateurs can often do a great job in single-story homes with easily accessible siding
  8. Have I finally chosen the right time of year? – Don’t paint the outside if it’s too hot or too cold (50 ° -90 ° F is the goldilocks temperature) or rainy or too sunny or too humid or too windy or too dusty. Choose your time of year

Now, by nature or caring for it, you can be someone who is good at home improvement. But you can’t be If you’re in the latter group, don’t choose the very public exterior of your home to test if you’re ready to change camp. Start inside.

Check your new plan (December 16, 2020)

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