Whether you’re buying a new construction home or ready to refresh your current house, painting ceilings can make any space feel new again. When it comes to how much to paint a ceiling, the price varies based on several factors. In terms of price per square foot, the cost to paint a ceiling is approximately $1 to $2.50 per square foot. When painting any part of a home, most of it is labor cost — including painting ceilings just as much as walls. The average cost to paint a ceiling in a 12’ x 12’ foot room is between $150 and $350. Your total price may depend on the paint quality, who you hire to do the job, and your location.
|What you can expect|
|Range per square foot:||$0.90||$2.18|
|Range for this type of project:||$270||$655|
Ceiling Painting Cost
Cost of residential-grade, latex-based dual paint/primer for exterior walls and trim, including wood, vinyl, masonry, stucco, and brick. Mildew-resistent enamel finish options include eggshell and semi-gloss. Rate is inclusive of local delivery, as well as standard excess for perfect coverage and occasional touch-ups. 15-year warranty guarantees excellence.
Ceiling Painting Labor, Basic
Labor cost, under typical conditions, for complete project. Surface will be prepared by scraping, sanding, and patching as needed (up to 1/2 hour and 4 minor defects per 100 SF). Two coats of paint will be uniformly rolled or brushed, and cut in at trim molding. Fee is inclusive of all aspects of the project, such as thorough planning, acquisition of equipment and material, preparation and protection of project site, and meticulous cleanup.
Ceiling Painting Job Supplies
Requisite supplies for the job, including masking tape and paper, materials for surface repair and preparation, primers, and cleanup supplies.
|cost to paint a ceiling|
|National Avg. Materials Cost per square foot||$0.49|
|National Avg. Cost (labor and materials) for 300 square foot||$455.07|
|National Cost Range (labor and materials) for 300 square foot||$265.69 - $644.46|
How much does it cost to paint ceilings per square foot? It should cost approximately $0.50 per square foot on the low end. It may cost $3 per square foot or more on the high end. The average price per square foot is between $1 and $2.50. Remember that smaller jobs may cost you around $1 or more per square foot. While it may seem counterintuitive, smaller painting jobs cost more due to overhead costs. These costs include fuel, travel to the job site, insurance, and the supplies required to do the project. Since a painter pays the same overhead regardless of the job size, smaller rooms (or ceilings) can cost more in terms of the price per square foot you’ll pay.
Several factors go into the cost of painting a ceiling aside from the size of the room. A gallon of interior paint may cost anywhere from $20 to $60. You should be able to cover 350 to 400 square feet of the ceiling with just one gallon if you’re only painting one coat. You’ll need a little under one gallon per 12’ x 12’ room.
Painting trim like crown molding can add to your total cost. It typically costs between $500 to $1,500 to paint the trim in a 1,500-square-foot room. This molding is at the top where the walls and ceiling meet, and it requires patience and skill to paint it. If your room has crown molding, plan to pay between $1 to $3.50 per linear foot just for that portion alone. In some cases, you’ll pay an additional $0.50 to $1.50 per linear foot if you simultaneously have the crown molding and ceiling painted.
The painter will tape the edges of the wall and ceiling with quality painter’s tape. This process takes some time and may add to your total labor cost. All furniture must be moved or covered, and drop cloths will protect the floors. If you want to tape the walls and move your furniture yourself, you could save a bit of money on labor.
An average residential home has 8-foot ceilings. This height is easy to reach with a ladder, but taller ceilings may require more equipment, such as taller ladders or scaffolding — adding to the total ceiling painting price.
It typically takes about 1 gallon of paint to cover every 300 to 400 square feet on a ceiling. This formula means a 2,500-square-foot home would need between 6 and 7 gallons for just one coat. You can use an online paint calculator or a paint guide to help determine how much paint you’ll need for the ceilings in your home.
Not all ceilings are the same, and different types of ceilings may cost more to paint than others. Depending on the type of ceiling you have, your cost will vary. Here are examples of different ceiling types and the average cost to paint each.
Popcorn ceilings have a bumpy, “popcorn” texture that can be a bit more time-consuming to paint correctly. Plan to pay between $1 and $3 per square foot to paint a popcorn ceiling since you’ll need more paint to cover it than you would a flat ceiling. This ceiling type is quite common, but it’s not exactly aesthetically pleasing or as popular as it once was. If you want your popcorn ceiling removed, it may cost between $800 and $2,500 to take the popcorn texture off and smooth it out before re-painting it.
This ceiling type is in commercial buildings or some older homes. While it typically costs between $1 and $3 per square foot to paint this type of ceiling, most people simply replace older tiles with new ones rather than paint over the older, existing ones. Planning to paint this type of ceiling in a commercial building could void the warranty or go against local fire or building codes. Confirm this with your painting contractor before painting this type of ceiling, just to be sure.
It typically costs between $400 to $4,500 to paint a basement ceiling. Much of the price depends on the total square footage of the basement and if any other additional areas need special attention. Exposed beams, electrical wiring, or ductwork may increase your price since the painter will need to work around them. Every basement is different, so get an accurate estimate in writing before you paint the basement ceiling.
Prepare to pay between $1 and $3 per square foot to paint an exposed basement ceiling. However, any additional prep work or the requirement of additional materials may increase your price to between $2 and $6 per square foot. Many people paint an exposed basement ceiling to help blend any exposed beams, ductwork, and electrical work.
When it comes to the cost of painting a ceiling, most of it is the time and labor it takes to complete the job. If you want to paint a ceiling DIY, you’ll save a lot of money overall. Before you attempt to do this job yourself, make sure you have a quality, sturdy ladder. You’ll also need other supplies — including paint brushes, rollers, masking tape, paint thinner, and large drop cloths to protect your floors and furniture. Plan to pay between $200 to $600 in supplies alone.
Professional painters typically charge anywhere from $25 to $75 per hour if you decide to hire someone. However, they can usually finish the job in much less time than if you were to do it yourself. The pros know how to paint, leaving a smooth finish behind without mistakes or drips. Look for a local interior house painter near you to get an estimate of the total price to have a professional do the job for you.
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