How to price a painting job

Updated March 23, 2017

As a painting contractor, provide competitive pricing that will cover the cost of labour, materials and your time. Whether you're doing interior, exterior, decorative, residential or commercial painting jobs, an effective pricing method allows you to quickly produce accurate estimates.

Determine the square footage of the area to be painted, how much time the job will take, how many supplies are needed and whether you will need additional workers.

Surface preparation--scraping, pressure washing, etc.-- as well as covering woodwork, outlets and floor surfaces, and protecting the customer's property, are all as important as the painting itself.

You may need to purchase clean dust sheets, additional brushes or rollers, painter's tape, pan liners and other accessories. Provide a detailed listing.

Include lodging, mileage and fuel costs, if travel is needed. Keep these costs to a minimum by getting everything you need before arriving at the job site.

If you are doing a large exterior or commercial job, where time is of the essence, having additional painters is crucial to your success.


Price your work competitively without shortchanging yourself.

Things You'll Need

  • Calculator
  • Tape measure
Cite this Article A tool to create a citation to reference this article Cite this Article

About the Author

Based in Ohio, Deborah Waltenburg has been writing online since 2004, focusing on personal finance, personal and commercial insurance, travel and tourism, home improvement and gardening. Her work has appeared on numerous blogs, industry websites and media websites, including "USA Today."