Average Cost to Paint the Interior of a House
The average cost to paint a house interior ranges from $2 to $6 per square foot with an average of $3.30 per square foot. Painting trim, baseboards and ceilings will fall on the higher end of the cost range. Prepping the space by repairing drywall or plaster walls will increase project costs.
|National Average Cost
||$963 and $2,744
Home Interior Painting Costs
Painting the interior of an average 2300 square foot home runs anywhere from $1,900 to $7,800. Prices vary for a number of factors, including:
- Regional differences. Higher regional wages and overhead means higher prices for you.
- Wall height. High walls increase the paintable area.
- Designer paints. You can pay up $1,000 more just for a better brand.
Actual coverage area. For example, a home with 20 windows has far less area to paint than one with 10 windows.
House Paint Job Costs Per Square Foot
|Home Square Foot
||Average Total Price Range
Apartment Painting Cost
Painting an apartment costs $1,000 to $2,900 for 950 square feet. If you own the apartment, all the costs fall to you. However, if you’re a renter, the landlord or owner might pick up some, or all, of the tab. Always talk to them first before picking up a brush or hiring a pro.
Consider these tips if you rent:
- Neutrals: Your landlord might help with the bill if you’re going with neutral colors like white, beige and gray. After all, it improves the property and the value.
- Bright colors: expect the opposite. You’ll probably have to pay to have it reverted to its original color. The neutral palette appeals to more people, making leasing easier.
- Peeling paint: The landlord might be responsible for all the costs.
- DIY: For DIYer’s, owners will often supply the materials if you do the work.
Condo Painting Estimate
Painting a condo runs $1,200 to $3,600 for the average 1,200 square foot unit. Always check with your HOA for any rules governing color choices.
The cost to paint an average size room (10X12) ranges from $200 to $800. DIY, this can cost between $100 to $300.
When estimating the cost, painters start by finding the coverage area which tells them how many gallons they’ll need. They find the area with a few simple steps:
- Find the area of the walls. Add together the length of the wall and multiply it by the width of the room.
- Multiply that by the height of the room.
- Subtract the area of all windows, doors and cabinets. Use the same length x width method. These are all unpaintable areas.
- Determine if ceilings, trim and baseboards are part of the project. If so, add these using the same method for area.
- This is your surface area number. Contractors often add a small percentage back into this final number to account for extras like detail work, patching and overage.
Labor costs $170 to $680 to paint a room professionally. However, there are multiple ways in which your professional finds that project figure: per square foot of coverage, per square foot of floor space, or hourly.
- Per square foot of coverage area: $2-$6 per square foot for labor and materials. Or labor alone at $1.50-$4 per square foot. This method dominates the industry for bidding projects. It’s more consistent and accurate.
- Per square foot of floor space: $5 to $10 per square foot. This represents floorspace as detailed on a blueprint or floorplan. Though rare, they may use this method to quickly estimate your project price. If you have unique architecture or features, like floor-to-ceiling windows, ask for an hourly or coverage area quote.
- Per hour pricing: $20 to $50 per hour. Some charge $75 or more. Labor accounts for about 75% to 85% of your total bill. Most pros charge by area, not hourly.
When using an hourly rate, the speed they can complete the job will determine its final cost, but time is difficult to estimate. Most cover about100 to 120 square feet of flat surface in an hour, unless they are working on a very large wall. Rough surfaces, like wood or plaster, might reduce that amount to 80 to 100 square feet.
||Total Average Painting Cost
The most important factor is area. The size of the room determines the cost of supplies. When estimating the paint for such a job, keep in mind that one gallon covers about 400 square feet.
Painting a bedroom costs $300 to $750 for a standard 10 by 12-foot room. You’ll need two gallons plus a can of primer if you’re going with a lighter color.
Painting a bathroom costs $150 to $350. Add more to your budget for large master bathrooms with a lot of drywall area. The average bathroom at 70 square feet doesn’t have much paintable area due to tile, cabinets and surrounds.
You’ll spend $2 to $6 more per gallon for high or semi-gloss paints over eggshell and matte finishes. These paints are more durable and easier to clean.
Expect to pay anywhere from $900 to $2,000 for the average 330 square foot living room. You can expect to pay slightly more if you choose to use two colors to create an accent wall, or if your ceilings are high.
Cost to Paint Walls
A single wall runs as little as $100. However, most professionals have a minimum project price, typically around $250 to $500.
Painting Accent Walls
Accent walls often cost 20 to 30 percent more than other types. This is due mostly to the color change. Specialty work gets more expensive. Murals and trompe l’oeils cost $800 to $1,700.
Which wall should you paint? Choose a wall with maximum focal point potential. Follow your eyes:
- Living room: where the fireplace or the TV is situated
- Bedroom: the wall that your bed sits against
- Wall art: Complement or showcase a collection or piece of art or furniture you’d like to highlight
- Open or close a room: Like adding an accent wall on one end of a narrow hallway to provide a lengthening effect.
Textured walls increase the price of painting by up to 50 percent. The price increase comes from the added surface area. A couple notes to remember:
- The texture adds more surface area, even though it doesn’t increase square footage. Where a can of paint covers 400 square feet of smooth wall, you might only get 250 square feet on a textured wall.
- Factor additional surface area into your square footage calculations when seeking professional estimates.
Interior Whole House Painting Cost Factors
Painting your entire home costs anywhere from $1,000 to $11,000. Ranges are due mainly to the size of your home, but other cost factors come into play. A few of those include:
- Quality of paint. While a gallon runs $20-$30, you can get a designer brand for $100+. The average home needs about 6 gallons per coat. At two coats, that’s a cost difference of almost $1,000.
- Regional pricing. Expect to pay far more in areas with a high cost of living, like New York, Denver or San Francisco. Pros charge more to cover higher overhead and wages.
- Different Colors. Changing colors between rooms tends to cost more in materials since you’ll have higher waste. Choose the same color throughout to save money.
- Gloss vs. Matte. You’ll spend about $2 per gallon more per level of gloss. The glossier the paint, the higher the cost. However, this won’t affect the final price by much.
||up to $220
||up to $400
||up to $200
Paint will cost anywhere between $20 and $100 per gallon. A professional can get paints up to 50 percent less than a homeowner.
Some projects require a primer, which will cost anywhere from $10 to $20 per can.
Some things to remember:
- It helps with both adhesion for a long lifespan and to prep dark walls for lighter colors.
- Most brands offer a “paint plus primer” in a single can. These generally cover less square footage. They’re good for touch ups and small areas.
- Get a stain blocker variety for water damage or mold stains.
Expect to pay slightly more the glossier you go. Actual pricing differences vary from brand to brand. It comes in 5 different finishes: flat or matte, eggshell, satin, semi-gloss or high-gloss.
- Flat (or Matte)
- Best for bedrooms and areas with low humidity.
- Hardest to clean but don’t reflect light
- Great for dining rooms or other rooms with minimal traffic.
- Great for family rooms, hallways and other high-traffic areas.
- Also good in children’s bedrooms for easier cleaning.
- Stain-resistant and easy to clean.
- Great for kitchens and bathrooms.
- Reserve for doors and cabinets.
- Extremely durable and easy to clean.
- Too shiny for interior walls.
Paint supplies cost anywhere from $10 to $100 or more depending on what you need. Painters will typically provide most of the supplies for a project, but sometimes they will allow you to pay for solely labor if you provide all the materials yourself. You might decide to do a DIY paint job down the road. In which case having these supplies on-hand will save you time and money.
- Brushes: $3-$20 each. Trim and sash brushes for intricate work, beaver-tail handles on larger brushes for larger surfaces.
- Tape: $3-$10 per roll. Standard painter’s tape to protect trim and ceilings from droplets. Most experienced pros rarely use it but a DIYer will probably need it.
- Drop cloth: $5-$30 each. To protect floors and furniture from drips.
- Tray: $2-$5 each. To keep out only a portion of paint rather than drying out an entire gallon.
- Rollers: $10-$100. A quick way to cover a large portion of a wall.
- Ladder: Necessary for reaching high areas (don’t use a chair!).
- Painting kits: $10-$20 each. These include trays, brushes and roller heads.
Charges for Additional Updates
You might pay an additional $1 to $5 per square foot for optional repairs and updates. Consider having your molding, trim and baseboards checked while you have a professional in your home. This might be a good time to upgrade or repair any cracks, warps or other issues. Pros can usually touch up or replace these items for an affordable rate, and they may even package such fixups with your project.
A few options to consider:
Get Quotes From Local Painters
A handy homeowner can buy paint and equipment for about $200 to $300. Don’t forget to factor in the time it will take you to do this yourself. Depending on the size of the room and how much help you have, this could take a few hours or a few days.
Follow these general steps for DIYing:
- Decide on a color palette: Earth tones and neutrals will cover up marks, scratches and handprints.
- Buy supplies: Paint, primer, rollers, brushes and other supplies (see above).
- Remove furniture from the room to protect it from drips and avoid trips and falls.
- Clean the walls with a water and detergent mixture. For any stains, use trisodium phosphate.
- Remove outlet covers and switch plates: Turn off electricity in the room to avoid an accidental shock.
- Outline: Put any painter’s tape over baseboards, trim and edging to avoid drips.
- Apply the first coat. Let it dry according to the instructions on the can before moving on.
- Apply the second coat.
- Touch up baseboards, ceiling trim and spots on the wall as needed.
There are a few things you can do to drop the rates from pros. Consider these tips to negotiate lower rates:
- Do the prep yourself. Dragging furniture around and laying drop cloths isn’t rocket science but takes up time.
- Combine your project with friends and neighbors. By combining projects, you might get the contractor to drop his rates slightly for more work.
- Do the cleanup yourself. Same as setup, cleaning up the tape, drop cloths and moving furniture back into place takes time.
A couple things to avoid doing:
- Don’t buy paint yourself. Contractors can get it cheaper. If you have a specific brand or style, let them know. They may have cheaper alternatives to offer.
- Don’t always take the lowest bid. It might be the cheapest, but not always the best value. Ask for estimates that have labor, paint, prep work, cleanup and materials as separate items. Ask for details on what type of paint they’re bidding on. Often, the lowest bidder cuts costs through cheap materials and quick work.
How much does paint cost and how much do I need?
Paint costs $15 to $40 per gallon on average, though most will spend $30 per can. To determine how much paint you need, measure your coverage area by taking wall length times its height and subtracting any windows, doors or other unpaintable areas.
Use our painting calculator to determine square footage per gallon measurements.
How much do painters charge to paint a room per square foot??
You’ll spend between $2 to $6 per square foot on average to hire a painter.
How much do interior painters charge per hour?
Painters charge $20 to $50 an hour on average. However, they typically don’t work for an hourly rate, opting instead to charge by the project or square foot.
What’s the price to paint a 12×12 room?
You’ll spend $400 to $900 painting a single 12×12 room.
What’s the painting estimate for a 10×10 room?
Painting a 10×10 room costs $200 to $600 on average.
How long does it take to paint a room?
It’ll take anywhere from 6 to 10 hours to paint a single room. It depends heavily on the experience of the person doing the job. Pros can get it done in a few hours while a DIYer will likely take 2 to 3 times as long.
How much do painting charges change per state or area?
Painting charges can vary as much as 150 percent or more depending on your state or region. Prices fluctuate heavily depending on the cost of living index.
How do I get interior painting quotes from pros?
- Research painting professionals near you.
- Read reviews and check on previous work in our painting contractor directory.
- Contact 3-5 professionals for quotes.
- Always get multiple quotes to weed out suspiciously high and low bids.
- Never take a bid without a site visit.
- Check with the professionals to make sure they are all licensed and insured. All professionals in our network are prescreened with background checks.