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Understanding the Cost for Painting a Room

Many people want to know how much a painter will charge. They feel like , not telling them a price for something we haven’t seen is probably related to scammy behavior. As an outsider, I can see that. Contractor’s are in a unique position, and unfortunately, if you combine that with the fact that almost everyone has had, or knows somebody that has had,  a bad experience with a contractor. 

But the reality of the situation, and the real reason why it is so hard to give , even a ballpark figure, is that painting might have more variables than any other profession on the planet. Square footage aside, each room has its own set of features, blemishes, past owners, and many more. If I did bids over the phone, or just by looking at picture’s, I would have to ask for more money EVERYTIME. And that is something that customer’s detest. I cant see the 7 hairline cracks in your ceiling from a picture. (I can barely see them when I am standing right under them).

Is there a stain on the ceiling? Is the ceiling gonna be painted? Trim? Doors? windows? crown moulding? Are we talking about a living room with 20 foot vaulted ceilings? Is there wall paint on the side’s of door jamb’s from the previous painters? Are there wide gap’s between your vanity and the wall? What kind of primer am I gonna need? The expensive stuff that bond’s to anything? I mean, the cost of painting a room , although it usually can fit into a $200-$300 margin, has at least 15-20 different variables that directly effect the price. 

The best thing to do is, ask the contractor questions like, ‘How much do you charge per square foot, to start?’ or ‘On average, what is your cost for materials, if the room requires the amount of paint as dictated by square footage?’ ‘How much do extra repairs cost?’ If you have higher ceilings, than not only is your square footage higher than normal, but the painter might charge extra for the time it takes to climb up and down a bigger ladder all day. 

Below, I will give some basic prices, for some of the common situations involved in painting a room. Hopefully you will get an idea of what pricing looks like in general:

how much does a painter charge to paint interior rooms average cost to paint a room Average Cost To Paint A Room masculine bedroom

Assume that this is a 10x12 bedroom, with 1 closet, 1 window, an entry door, baseboards and 8 foot ceilings.

Wall Square Footage

10×8=80×2 (2 walls @ 10 feet long) = 160 sq/ft

12×8=96×2 (2 walls @ 12 feet long) = 192 sq/ft

Total area square footage for the walls – 160+192=352 sq/ft

Subtract 21 sq/ft for the door, another 18 sq/ft for the window and 36 sq/ft for the closet door and now you have

267 sq/ft, of Paintable wall area.

Ceiling Square Footage

The ceiling will be 10×12 = 120 Paintable square feet

Baseboard LINEAR Feet

The baseboard will add up to 44 linear feet, minus3 feet for the door, and another 6 feet for the closet door, so – 35 linear feet.1

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Here is how we find the cost of each part of the room:

WALLS – 267 sq/ft of Paintable Area 

CEILINGS – 120 sq/ft Paintable Area

BASEBOARDS– 44 Linear Feet of Paintable Trim

DOORSx2 (Both Sides)

WALLS – 267 sq/ft of Paintable Area 

Walls Only

1 Account
$ 1
50 sq/ft
  • No repairs
  • No stickers, or wall paper boarder to remove
  • 2 gallons of paint.

CEILINGS – 120 sq/ft Paintable Area

Walls and Ceiling

5 Account
$ 1
65 sq/ft
  • No stains or repairs
  • Basic ceiling (no popcorn)
  • 3 gallons of paint

BASEBOARDS– 44 Linear Feet of Paintable Trim

DOORSx2 (Both Sides)

Walls, Ceiling, and TrimDoors

10 Account
$ 2
  • No repairs
  • Limited caulking of trim
  • 4 gallons of paint

Learn the Variables That Make up The Cost of Painting

Of course, this is simply one way that pricing can be done. Some painter’s will use the floor square feet, and charge a higher price per square foot. Some painters estimate how long the job will take and then multiply the hour’s time’s the their hourly rate. 

But what I wanted to show you, is that the price for painting literally changes with every addition, subtraction and even with thing’s like previous paint color’s. 

So if you determine an average paint cost for your area, and then look at the room you want painted. Are there repairs? What’s the square footage? Is the trim in good shape? Will the ceiling cover in 1 coat?

You can at least determine if the cost to paint your room will be higher than average or right around average.

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