How Much Would a Painter Charge to Paint a House?

Updated April 17, 2017

A painting estimate takes into consideration many factors, including the size and type of job and the painter's experience level. The estimation is usually based on the number of man hours a painter will work, the amount of materials needed and the cost per unit of both.


The experience level of a painter will be a determining factor in how much a painter will charge. If the painter has painted many expensive houses, his cost will be higher than a freelance, part-time painter.


Walls that contain a lot of damage (holes, dents and other damaged surfaces) will require more preparation and increase the number of man hours it will take to complete the job.

Detailed Surfaces

Detailed trimming and unusually shaped walls will increase the amount of time it will take to paint the surface, as each edge must be painted with a paintbrush (meticulous edging takes more time).

Surface Area

The square footage of the surface you are painting will determine how much paint you need. One gallon of paint typically covers 400 square feet, equivalent to one 10-by-15 foot room with 8-foot ceilings. Some colours require additional coats.

Cost of Materials

Paint usually costs between £6 to £32 per gallon, depending on quality. Multiplying the cost of paint by the surface area painted will provide you with an estimate of material costs.

Cost of Time

A typical 10-by-15 foot room usually takes about 4 hours to paint the trim and apply the first coat. In May 2008, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, median hourly wages of wage and salary painters were £10.30 (not including self-employed). However, this does not cover costs of operation, so a safer hourly rate estimate is £16 to £19.

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About the Author

Kyle Fiechter began writing professionally in 2010. Websites in which his writing has appeared include eHow and LIVESTRONG.COM. He has a Bachelor of Science in neurobiology and physiology from Purdue University. Fiechter is a photographer and designer, and he has video production experience.