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CostHelper > Home and Garden  > Flooring, Painting & Remodeling > Painting an Interior

Painting an Interior Cost


How Much Does Painting an Interior Cost?

 
average costMedium: $200-$300 per roomhigh costHigh: $300-$700 per room
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Fresh paint can take a room from looking dreary and out-of-date to a sense of sparkling newness for a relatively low price compared to other remodeling projects.

Typical costs:

  • Interior paint itself costs anywhere from $12-$50 or more a gallon, depending on the quality. Painting a 12x12-foot room, both walls and ceiling, can require $25-$100 worth of paint, plus $10-$50 for primer, brushes, rollers, drop clothes and other supplies. For a 1,500-square-foot home, supplies run $200-$300 for average paint, and $400-$600 for higher quality.
  • Expect to pay $200-$400 to have a 12x12-foot room painted by a licensed contractor with brand-name paints; a 15x20-foot room or larger runs $300-$700 or more; and a 1,200-1,500 square foot home is $1,100-$2,000 or more. Having the ceiling painted bumps the cost to the high end of the scale.
Related articles: Painting a House, Wallpaper, Wallpaper Removal, Lead Paint Abatement, Drywall, Interior Decorator

What should be included:
  • Whether doing it yourself or hiring someone, buy the best quality paint you can afford; it lasts longer and in some situations requires only one coat of paint instead of two. Painting a room usually involves prep work, primer and latex or alkyd paints with a range of finishes. HGTV.com gives a quick overview [1] as well as a list of painting dos and don'ts[2] .
  • ThisOldHouse.com provides tips for picking interior colors[3] and step-by-step instructions for painting a room[4] .
  • A painting contractor's estimate usually includes all prep work (including taping and moving small items, primer and two or more coats of paint.
Additional costs:
  • Cheap paint roller covers leave fuzz on the wall while inexpensive brushes leave streaky marks; pay a few extra cents or dollars to get better results.
  • It takes more coats of paint and costs more to cover a dark color with a light one, or vice versa.
  • Removing heavy furniture is often not included in painters' estimates; if you can't do it yourself or hire someone, ask if there will be an extra charge.
  • Having to paint crown molding, baseboards, wainscoting or other detailed can add to a contractor's estimated price, as can walls taller than the average of 8 feet. The exact extra expense will varies depending on the amount of extra labor required.
Discounts:
  • If a painter is setting up to do a single room in a home, additional rooms may cost less than the first--it's possible to save money overall by painting everything at once.
  • Painters' quotes can be lower in winter, early spring or late fall--the off-season--than in peak summer months when there's lot of work available. Ask if there's a discount if the project is done on a fill-in basis, in-between other projects.
Shopping for painting an interior:
  • Explore color and style ideas from major paint manufacturers Behr[5] and Sherwin-Williams[6] .
  • Easy2DIY.com provides a paint calculator[7] to determine how many gallons will be needed. Lowes[8] sells paint and provides do-it-yourself tips.
  • The Painting and Decorating Contractors of America[9] gives tips for hiring a pro and links to its members.
  • Get estimates from several contractors, request and contact references, search for complaints at the Better Business Bureau[10] and check that the company is properly bonded and insured, as well as licensed in your state[11] .
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What People Are Paying - Recent Comments

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Interior Paint w/Baseboards, Caulking, Doors
Amount: $1,400.00
Posted by: Paintfool in Plano, TX.Posted: September 6th, 2014 07:09PM
Number of Rooms: 1Painter: Professional???
Hired a paint contractor w/good recommendations, this room was 12x12 tops. Caulking, sanding and caulking 2 window sills, painted ceilings and walls 1 coat but 2 different colors, plain 1/4" x3" baseboards & 4 doors oil-based trim, w/2 doors only 1 side. We provided paint at $180, he ended up hiring day laborers & had to redo. Took 14 days, looks good now but need to paint more and I'm scared b/c we had a contract & he tried to extort more very very threatening & I have to now work by sq. ft. in other areas, don't want to be nickel & dimmed for every time repair (he charged $50 because our dog's nose touched a wet wall but they let him in)! Any ideas from others in my area? Actually done in 2014, doesn't allow for it.
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Dont listen to this guy
Amount: $9,000.00
Posted by: painter88 in naples, FL.Posted: September 23rd, 2013 08:09AM
Number of Rooms: 10Painter: Professional
Interior painting cost in real time environment
Amount: $9,960.00
Posted by: JCF C&T Ltd in Bonita Springs,, FL
First off the concept of not hiring someone who charges by total sq foot, it a bit ridiculous. You can charge many different ways, and total sq foot (floor space) is just one of those ways.
I would love to know the total sq footage of that 10 room house that you charged $9000+ to paint. Yes the wall sq footage was 5900, but $1.80 per square foot of wall space is a bit high for a residential repaint IMO.
Take for example, I charge 1.75 sq foot for 10x10 room with 8 foot ceilings. By my calculations this would cost $175 with floor space sq foot, but with you method, it would cost $576.00 That is outrageous. Of course I didn't subtract the windows and doors, which is another thing that makes no sense. Cutting in around those windows takes more time, then just rolling a wall.
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1700 sq ft house interior
Amount: $3,800.00
Posted by: John Savage in Pleasanton, CA.Posted: September 22nd, 2013 05:09PM
Number of Rooms: 7Painter: Francisco Ayala
Three bedroom 2 bath 11' vaulted ceiling in living room. Crown molding throughout. six panel doors throughout. All woodwork prepped and and sprayed.
Everything primed and painted. excellent job. Did all work with my wife and I living in house. Protected our furniture. very professional.
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Indoor painting
Amount: $1,500.00
Posted by: Pogi in Wellington, FL.Posted: July 27th, 2013 01:07PM
Number of Rooms: 3/2 plus LR, DR, KitPainter: Eduardo
Never prepped walls. Painter had to return five times to sand walls, clean walls and repaint. Did not sand enamel surfaces on door so paint started to peel shortly after. Could not do ourselves as in the past due to illness. Awful experience.
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Interior painting cost in real time environment
Amount: $9,960.00
Posted by: JCF C&T Ltd in Bonita Springs,, FL.Posted: February 14th, 2013 07:02AM
Number of Rooms: 10Painter: 35 year professional
5383 actual square footage of walls. Do not estimate or accept estimates based on square footage of floor. I use a laser device to ACCURATELY measure. I take out for windows and doors. Unless a job is new construction (empty), understand that furniture,artwork, carpet, appliances, etc. will affect time and labor. Also understand that ceiling height is a game changer. A rate of no less than $1.80/sf including materials is realistic, acceptable and more than fair for a qualified professional to paint rooms with 9' ceilings. Expect to pay $1 extra per square foot for 9'- 15' and $2.50 extra for 15' +. Some additional costs for extreme conditions will raise that amount. Trying to base the amount on days worked by number of workers is both unfair to the professional and undue to your senses. This job is based on 15 days work by two workers, one painter and one grunt to tarp, move furniture, clean up and book paint. That nets to approx $663/day. As you can see, not great wages.
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15\' walls plus ceilings about 2489 sq ft of wall space, one coat over similar color
Amount: $1,150.00
Posted by: indyrealo in Indianapolis, IN.Posted: December 13th, 2012 08:12AM
Number of Rooms: 4Painter: self
this is what I quoted the owner, he thinks because the actual sq ft of the room is about 584 I am charging too high...rnrnIncludes prep, some wipe down and cutting all around mouldings and install of scaffold and coverings of owners furniture in the space... Is this reasonable at .40/sf ?
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PB Painting BC Canada
Amount: $1.00
Posted by: Peter painter in Abbotsford Bc Canada, Other.Posted: October 23rd, 2012 11:10PM
Number of Rooms: 3500 sq ft homePainter:
I paint in Canada and prices are like that of the State Side. I I I take pride in my work and charge reasonable rates ($1.00 sq.ft.) for an average home interior and price changes a little as heights of walls change, but there are those who so undercut those prices like .30 sq. ft. and that includes paint and we can't compete with those prices. I can compete if I don't prep walls, use the cheapest paint on the market that looks good at first, 2 thin coats no primer but after 1year it looses it's luster and durability, I don't move any furniture, and concern myself with quanity not quality. I understand people are looking for bargains because money is a little tighter but people need to understand we need to be also wise in who we get. Wisdom shop around, don't just go for cheap prices, check these people out, ask what services include. 30% of my business is redo cheap painters work. Advice if you don't want to pay, try painting yourself you might find it fun. Hope this helped. Thanks
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Go hire some Meskins
Amount: $0.02
Posted by: Loco Lobo in Longview, TX.Posted: August 26th, 2012 06:08PM
Number of Rooms: 666Painter: dirtywerk
Many actually do very good work at very reasonable rates. They know that to survive during downturns one must lower prices. Too many others jack theirs' up to compensate for less work. I've been contracting painting and remodeling for 35 years and think it's time for me to learn Spanish. These guys are better employees than whites and blacks.
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Quote for a 1,500 sq ft house Interior painting
Amount: $7,000.00
Posted by: Cape Cod in Cape Cod, MA.Posted: July 19th, 2012 03:07PM
Number of Rooms: 8Painter:
I am looking at painting the interior of my house. Everything except doors. 3 bedrooms, 2 baths, kitchen, living room and stairway upstairs. Quote was for $7,000-$8,000 including materials. Is that high to anyone?? Please let me know ASAP!
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Interior Painting
Amount: $400.00
Posted by: Professional Painter in Eastern Pennsylvania, PA.Posted: April 9th, 2012 06:04AM
Number of Rooms: 0-20Painter: Professional Painter 15yrs
People need to realize that if you want a licensed, insured professional painter in your home that is reputable, trustworthy & skilled, that it will cost them an average of $400.00 a day. If you want a nice paint job then it is all about prep work. There is tarping, plastic, furniture moving, caulking, spackling, sanding, priming, sealing, before you even paint. I have repainted interiors that were painted less than a year because the last contractor came in with a cheap price, did zero prep work, & painted with watered down paint. My point, A house is usually the most valuable asset a person will purchase, so why would you let just anyone with a cheap quote work on it? “The bitterness of poor quality remains long after the sweetness of low price is forgotten” – Benjamin Franklin
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Need help calculating
Amount: $0.00
Posted by: Richards Painting services in asheville, NC.Posted: January 30th, 2012 04:01AM
I am new to painting on my own and want to charge fair prices. I have a customer who wants me to give a price per square foot. lets say an interior room is 10x10 with 8 foot ceilings. would the square footage be 10 times 10 = 100 sq feet ? or is it 10 times 8 times 4 walls = 320 sq feet ?
As you can see, calculating one way I have just 100 sq ft and the other way I have 320.

which sq footage number do I use to multiply with the going rate in my area to paint per sq ft? I have been told that the average cost to paint per sq ft in western north carolina (asheville and waynsville area) is $1.75 pr sq ft(does that sound right?)
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New Construction
Amount: $11,465.00
Posted by: sunsport in Huntsville, AL.Posted: December 2nd, 2011 07:12PM
Number of Rooms: 2,000 square foot housePainter: Contractor
about 9,000 square foot of drywall, primed, and painted two coats. all trim, Doors, casing, professional Job. Did I pay to Much at $1.25 per square foot?
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Not sure what to charge
Amount: $0.00
Posted by: Laura M. in Chicago, IL.Posted: November 14th, 2011 06:11PM
Number of Rooms: 5++Painter: Semi-Professional Painters
I have been painting for 7 summers as a side job with a school district. I have been asked to paint a friend's house and I don't want to over charge but it will be a lot of work. She is paying for all of the paint and supplies-----5 average sized rooms plus ceilings, ceilings in 3 additional small rooms, and all window and door frames. I need some advice!!!
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Home owners painting
Amount: $130.00
Posted by: NNN in Staten Island, NY.Posted: October 1st, 2011 01:10PM
Number of Rooms: 1Painter: Hubby and me
I have the time since I work from home and work has been slow, so I volunteered to paint our kitchen..10 X 16. My hubby changed his mind midway through the painting, so I had to change color. Took 3 days. I did most of the painting and he painted and did some touch up work. We spent $126 in paint and supplies which included primer, ceiling paint, primer, three colors, semi gloss for trim and chair rail, assorted brushes, roller covers, and drop cloths. After all was said and done, it looks really good.
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interior and exterior
Amount: $0.00
Posted by: al1980s in northern, NJ.Posted: May 14th, 2011 06:05AM
Number of Rooms: anyPainter: any
Regarding cost - Keep in mind some older homes may cost more due to the EPA RRP lead paint rule that was placed in effect. I'm not saying price will be doubled, but it will add some more labor and material cost. After all, the EPA is fining non compliant contractors nearly $38,000 per non compliant violation. I see many posts about illegal contractors. We do pay insurances, we have business costs, I price jobs to where I am comfortable with paying labor, expenses for my business, and not making $250k per year as some do. I have gone into homes where someone thought they were getting a great deal and ended up calling me to fix mistakes or sloppy jobs. Paint will vary in cost, yes.
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exterior commercial paint
Amount: $0.00
Posted by: dobrien507 in pettus, TX.Posted: May 5th, 2011 09:05PM
Number of Rooms: 104ft x 72ft x 20ft tallPainter:
what is a reasonable price per sq ft for painting one prime coat, two finish coats. two color will be used. Stomped on how to bid helpful adviced will be useful.
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Interior Painting
Amount: $600.00
Posted by: Maggie Rose in Cambridge, MA.Posted: February 22nd, 2011 05:02AM
Number of Rooms: Living room and HallPainter: March Remodeling
The living room was 20 by 20 with 10'ceilings. Also had the hall wall leading to the upstairs painted; this was another 30'wall. I had a custom color done. I asked for the job at noon since I needed it to help sell my house and my Realtor wanted it for the next morning. The contractor delivered a perfect job over night for $600 (Dollars) and the cost of the custom paint. I was very impressed with this company: March Remodeling out of Belmont.
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Pro Painting Costs
Amount: $0.00
Posted by: rmichael in New Bern, NC.Posted: February 15th, 2011 12:02PM
Number of Rooms: Painter: R. Woodward & Co.
The national average cost for painting new construction interiors is $3.65 per sq. ft. ( heated floor space ) that does not include casework like cabinets vanities etc. Repaints do not require the same volume of paint but do have a different set of challenges. Professional Repaints can run from around $2.00 - $5.00 & up per sq. ft. HFS.
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Do the Math.
Amount: $100,000.00
Posted by: drctmptg in Denver, CO.Posted: February 11th, 2011 12:02AM
Number of Rooms: Painter: Colorado Painter
Solution for everyone wondering about pricing. Figure it out like a professional contractor would. Ask the painter how long it is going to take them in number of hours. Muliply this by $25.00 - $40.00 / HR depending on the detail and type of finish (likely around $30.00). Add it to the costs and add in 25-35% for overhead if you are dealing with a legit business. This should be your number. Those are the two big price variables. Labor and overhead. Check their last two references. How long ago did they complete these jobs. Was it 3 months ago? If so, may not be a legit operation. If they are booked out a ways, this could be a good sign. Ask questions about prep, cleaning and who is doing the work. Get an insurance certificate. Here is a test. The guy who comes in the middle of the range in estimated hours to complete the project, may be your guy to use? Beware of the low price! When a contractor underbids a job....things can get ugly. Poor workmanship. Extra charges. Good luck.
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Going cheap isn't always the best option.
Amount: $0.00
Posted by: a user in Jacksonville, FL.Posted: February 5th, 2011 09:02PM
Number of Rooms: 0Painter: The painter who cares
Ever heard the expression "you get what you pay for". Trust me, you don't want to learn the hard way. There are contractors out there that will work by themselves rather than having multiple employees, and for good reason. Working by yourself or with one or two trustworthy employees, you can control the quality of your work. The home owner would respect quality over price any day. There are many contractors out there that will make their money with speed and poor quality at the lowest price. All this does is makes it harder for other contractors from succeeding in running a legitimate business and doesn't give the homeowner the quality he or she deserves. The cost of running a legitimate business can be expensive, and gets over looked when handed a proposal. We have Machine/equipment cost and maintenance cost, painting supply cost, fuel cost and vehicle maintenance cost, home and mobile phone cost, office supply cost, advertising and website cost, and the list goes on and on. Taxes paid to the IRS every year. You get the picture. Legitimate small businesses are dropping like flies because of the under bidders that shoot for speed and poor quality. And we wounder why our economy is so messed up today!
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cheap paint
Amount: $0.00
Posted by: Painting on the cheap in Houston, TX.Posted: January 13th, 2011 08:01PM
Number of Rooms: 7Painter:
I am renting a house that the previous tenant painted every single wall a room defining color (burnt red and gold in the liv rm, pepto pink in a bedroom, etc). Any cheap painting tips I need to be aware of? I'm buying the cheapest neutral paint (about $8 a gallon) I can find since it's just a rent house but should I still be getting something a little better? I don't have a lot of money to spend to make this house colorfully tolerable.
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was this enough?
Amount: $0.00
Posted by: robert b in clarksville, TN.Posted: January 6th, 2011 08:01PM
Number of Rooms: 7Painter: robert b
Man paid me $200 to paint 1100 Sq Ft home inside w/ him providing everything needed to get it done.
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Cost estimate
Amount: $0.00
Posted by: Ken Houck in North Wildwood, NJ.Posted: November 4th, 2010 05:11AM
Number of Rooms: 3Painter: A friend
Need a 12x12 living room and ceiling (1 color), 12 x 12 dining room and ceiling (one color), 12x12 bedroom and ceiling (one color), small stairway (one color), hallway (one color), all baseboards in above, trim around 6 windows, 8 interior doors painted. A friend is doing it and does nice work and has said 'we' will work out a price. I know he will want to charge next to nothing but I want to be fair. How much should I suggest as payment?
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hire a real pro or master painter
Amount: $35.00
Posted by: real pro in northern NJ, NJ.Posted: October 19th, 2010 03:10PM
Number of Rooms: Painter: master residential painter
I have been painting close to 20 years as a full time painter. If you want it to look professional, hire a real pro, or a full-time pro who does side work. I have the ability to make any job look perfect, however my talents are all based on time and not everybody wants a level 5 finish so I adjust to fit home owner's needs accordingly. Outside of painting I can tape/spackle repair any interior surface, drywall or plaster just as perfect as a seasoned drywall finisher who only does that one task for a living. As a full-time pro, I do side work and charge less than it would be if you hired a Company to do the work, so for the savy home owner who wants high-end quality for less, you may consider going with a pro who does side work on the weekends.
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External Resources:
  1.  www.hgtv.com/decorating/primers-paints-and-top-coats/index.html
  2.  www.hgtv.com/painting/painting-dos-and-donts/index.html
  3.  www.thisoldhouse.com/toh/article/0,,1125002,00.htm
  4.  www.thisoldhouse.com/toh/how-to/intro/0,,217133,00.html
  5.  www.behr.com/Behr/home#
  6.  www.sherwin-williams.com/homeowners/color/
  7.  www.easy2diy.com/cm/easy/diy_ht_calc_index.asp?page_id=35720769
  8.  www.lowes.com/cd_Paint+an+Interior+Room_20639882_
  9.  www.findapainter.com/
  10.  search.bbb.org/
  11.  www.contractors-license.org/
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