The cost of painting a house depends on a variety of factors, such as the base and finish of the paint, the number of coats needed to cover the siding, and the amount of preparation work required. The more hours of work and materials a project requires, the higher its cost. Most painting contractors will charge based on the square footage of the surface they have to paint. To calculate the paintable surface area of your home, first multiply the outside perimeter of your house by its height.
Then measure the area of all the doors, windows, blinds, and other parts of your home that aren't included in the painting project. Subtract those numbers from the total area of your house and you'll have a close estimate of the size of your project. The number of floors your home has will also affect the cost of the project. The higher your house, the more surface to paint. This extra height will make the job more difficult for professional painters, as they will likely have to work from ladders, which will increase their labor costs.
Labor and material costs vary from project to project, so size isn't the only factor affecting the total price. Different types of paint will cost more or less per gallon, some contractors will charge higher hourly rates, and the coating material will determine how much paint you need to use. There are countless factors to consider if you want an accurate estimate of your budget. We'll go over some of the most important cost factors to help you understand what you're paying for and how you can save money on your painting project. While most contractors offer quotes for the total price (including labor and materials), being familiar with average hourly rates can help you budget.
The cost per hour is usually per painter and per hour, so a house that requires several workers will have a considerably higher rate. Before professionals can repaint the outside of your home, they may have to do some additional work to prepare it. This additional preparation work will add time to the job and increase its total cost. Some coating materials are rougher or more porous than others, so more coats of paint and primer will be needed to cover them. The result is higher material costs and longer working hours.
Brick and stucco are the most expensive types of coating to paint, while metal, wood and vinyl are more affordable. Latex paint is water-based and dries faster than oil-based paint. It is also more environmentally friendly than oil-based paint but is less durable and more likely to be scratched or damaged by elements. Oil-based paint contains more volatile organic compounds (VOCs) than latex, so it's less “green” and often smells foul (and sometimes even harmful) when dried. Oil-based paints take longer to dry than latex paints but ultimately resist scratches and water damage better. For this reason, people often choose to use oil paint in areas with high humidity.
While brighter paints are easier to clean, they also tend to show more imperfections on walls. Flat paint has no shine and is difficult to clean without rubbing off because water removes it easily. To get the best and most durable paint job possible, you'll need to apply a coat of primer before applying the paint itself. The primer creates a base for the paint, seals pores on walls and makes stains easier to mask. Many products have a 2-in-1 “paint and primer” label but that name is misleading; they're just thicker paints and nowhere near as effective as a combination of separate paints and primers. Just as there are different types of paint, there are different types of primers with their own prices.
Whenever possible, use a primer with the same base as the paint (i.e., oil-based primer with oil-based paint or latex-based primer with latex-based paint). If walls are in good condition and not trying to cover up stains or darker colors, you might be able to skip priming altogether. You would save money at that point but quality would be lower and you might have to repaint sooner. Professionals and homeowners can apply paint by spraying it or rolling it onto walls. Spraying requires less time and labor which translates into lower labor costs for you; you can save money especially on large jobs if you hire a contractor who uses a sprayer. Generally spraying is better for large homes because it can cover more surface area faster while rolling is better for detailed work; it consists of using rollers manually so it's more difficult and takes longer; labor rates for rolling are usually higher than spraying. When hiring professionals to paint exterior walls you may want them to also paint other parts such as moldings, doors or gutters; you could save money by bundling all painting jobs instead of hiring independent contractors for each one. When preparing home for painting you may encounter serious problems such as mold or toxic lead paint; company hired may be able to solve problems like these or you may need specialist help for removal of harmful substance. Curb appeal isn't just based on walls; other exterior features need new painting from time to time; painting these parts along with siding can give entire exterior clean look. Because painting detailed elements is different from painting walls there may be additional costs involved; however if all elements are painted at once there may be discounts available.