Skip to main content

How much to paint a room?

16 March, 2023

How much does it cost to paint a room? Of course you’ve heard this question, and it’s a legitimate question. An article on Forbes Home by Emily Glover and Lexie Pelchen tries to help homeowners better understand the cost of interior painting, room by room, so by the time they get to you they might have some idea of what price you’re going to come up with, and why it will cost what it does.

The authors don’t “baby” their readers, noting that the average cost to hire a contractor to paint a room is $1,000 even, but it can fluctuate from $600 to $1,600 depending on a variety of factors, including what the painter charges. In fact, runs the article, the price per hour for the painter or paint crew can be one of the biggest variables, ranging from as low as $20 an hour to upwards of $75. Meanwhile, the article continues, those wanting to paint that same room themselves might find themselves investing from $200 to $300 and as much as nine hours — it’s going to take an inexperienced painter longer to get it right.

“The costs can be affected by the layout of the room, the height of walls, the existing wall colors, your geographic location and more,” states the article. “To prime and paint a standard 400-square foot room, the average cost at $2.5 per square foot is $1,000 total.”

A good explanation
The article does a good job in showing homeowners, and thus your potential customers, what all might go into an estimate, for example the room size, the wall heights, the function of the room, even how much there is of trim, baseboards, paneling, etc.

“Professional paint jobs are typically prices at $2 to $6 per square foot,” state the authors, informing readers that paint can range from $10 to $80 or more a gallon, and better yet, urging a two-coat application. The article recommends using quality paint.

Here are some of the price ranges they’ve come up with. How do they compare with what you charge?
Per room estimates are as follows, depending on size and complexity of the project:

•    Bathroom, $150-$350.
•    Primary bedroom: $300-$750.
•    Kitchen cabinets: $30-$60 per linear foot.
•    Living room: $900-$2,000.
•    Baseboards, paneling and trim: $2 to $6 per square foot, average $3.30.

The article goes on to remind customers that higher walls and ceilings will add to the expense, because it’s more square footage and painters have more complications accessing higher spaces.

Another factor of cost, the article states, is color. The authors expect you’re going to charge more for painting a light color over dark, or heaven forfend, someone wants red. You might recommend to your customers that less colors make for a less expensive project, as the paint may come cheaper in a larger lot, plus they’ll have an easier time of touchup if there’s leftover paint that can be used in several locations. And aesthetically, it gives the house a common theme.

Can you move furniture?
No one’s supposed to work for free, and the authors warn their readers to expect to pay more if you’re adding extra services such as moving furniture, installing custom finishes, or painting up a lot of accent colors. Do you have to test for lead? Factor that in as well.

Long story short, Glover and Pelchen  press home the point that if someone is going to hire a professional painter, they should expect to pay professional prices, and the higher the cost of living in the area the more the job is going to cost. Chances are that if a homeowner is paying more for milk and eggs, so is the paint crew.

Does this match up with what you’ve been seeing? Where do you think this story gets it right or wrong? Let us know in the comments below.
 

Comments

Mike (not verified)

michael@hinespainting.com

There's no consistency at all in that information. I had a big response typed, but instead I'm just going to share some direct quotes from the article:

It costs an average of $1.50 to $3.50 to paint an interior wall.

The average costs increase to $3 to $4 per square foot if the project includes trim or ceilings.

it costs an average of $900 to $1,600 to paint a 330-square foot living room.

To prime and paint a standard 400-square foot room, the average cost at $2.5 per square foot is $1,000 total.

One gallon of interior paint can cover up to 400 square feet of space

Professional interior paint jobs are typically priced at $2 to $6 per square foot.

For example, it costs an average of $60 to $400 to paint a bathroom

For example, painting a bathroom typically costs between $150 to $350

Painting baseboards and trims are the most common task for painters. Depending on the amount of work required, the cost to paint the finishes can range from $2 to $6 per square foot

prices can be as low as $1.50 to $4 per square foot if they’re fixed-price jobs

Thu, 03/16/2023 - 18:25 Permalink
Anonymous (not verified)

You say $2-6/sf. Is that floor square footage or wall square footage? "“To prime and paint a standard 400-square foot room, the average cost at $2.5 per square foot is $1,000 total.”

Thu, 03/16/2023 - 19:01 Permalink
Larry Rudisill (not verified)

“The costs can be affected by the layout of the room, the height of walls, the existing wall colors, your geographic location and more,” states the article. “To prime and paint a standard 400-square foot room, the average cost at $2.5 per square foot is $1,000 total.” Is this wall square footage or floor square footage.

Thu, 03/16/2023 - 19:03 Permalink

Add new comment

Restricted HTML

  • Allowed HTML tags: <a href hreflang> <em> <strong> <cite> <blockquote cite> <code> <ul type> <ol start type> <li> <dl> <dt> <dd> <h2 id> <h3 id> <h4 id> <h5 id> <h6 id>
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.
  • Web page addresses and email addresses turn into links automatically.

Does your company own at least one AED/Automated External Defibrillator?

Choices

Did you attend any in-person paint industry events in 2023?

Choices
Post

In My Experience - Handle Mold & Mildew on Jobs

Read Now
Post

Top 6 Paints by Consumer Reports

Read Now
Post

Reducing Single Use Items

“Refinishing is heavy on single use items.  I recognized this…

Read Now
Post

Protest Highlights Classification Issue

The ongoing dispute over classifying workers as employees or…

Read Now
^