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How to Estimate a Paint Job in 5 Simple Steps

So you've decided to take on a paint job. Whether it's your own home or the office of a valued client, you will want to ensure that you don't underestimate (or overestimate!) what it will cost.

To make this process easier for you, we’ve put together 5 simple steps for estimating the cost of a paint job.

Measurements 

Every paint job starts with measuring the area you’re going to paint. This may seem daunting, but if you follow these steps you’ll get an accurate estimate of the number of gallons needed for one coat of paint:

  1. Add up the length of all the walls
  2. Measure the height of the walls
  3. Multiply the result of #1 by #2
  4. Divide the answer for #3 by 400. This is how many gallons of paint you need for one coat of paint (assuming that one gallon of paint covers 400 square feet).

These steps will give you an estimate of the wall area. However, remember to add in paint needed for baseboards, trim, and additional paint coats! For example, a 100 square feet room will most likely need 2 coats of paint for a high-quality finish.

Since time is money, we have included the average time needed for different paint jobs:

100 SQ FT BEDROOM:

  • Ceilings: 1 hour
  • Walls: 4 hours
  • Trim: 2.5 hours

Cost of Paint

The cost of paint is entirely dependent on the type of paint you want to use, the area you’re painting, and the paint finish you want. In this section, we will describe all these factors.

First, you need to decide the type of paint needed for the paint job. For example, Latex-based paints are used for paint jobs in bedrooms, living rooms, and hallways. The average cost is $25 to $90 per gallon.

Secondly, after determining the paint type, you need to decide the paint finish you want:

  • Flat paint: Typically used on ceilings with an average cost of $25 to $50 per gallon
  • Eggshell paint: can be used for any paint job because of its durability. The average cost is $25 to $110 per gallon
  • Semi or High gloss paint: used for baseboards and trim. The average cost is $30 to $110 per gallon

When deciding on the amount of paint to buy, take into account the tools you are using for the paint job, and that different paints require different amounts of coverage and drying time. For example, latex paints tend to require more coverage than oil-based paints but dry faster as well. In addition, oil paints (used for trim) are harder to apply so labour time is longer. Secondly, if you are using a sprayer for your paint job, an additional gallon of paint will be needed to fill the hose. 

Considering all these factors, adjust the paint job estimate accordingly. 

Cost of Materials 

You can’t undertake a paint job with just paint! You also need additional materials to execute the paint job perfectly. To get you started, here is a list of materials you definitely need on hand:

  • Paint brushes and rollers
  • Painters tape
  • Sanding paper
  • Wood Filler 
  • Drywall Filler
  • Tarps
  • Caulking
  • Primer

Cost of Labor 

If your friends and family aren’t jumping to help you with your paint job, it’s time to look into hiring painters (like us!). The industry standard for labour is $65 per hour. We also provide a free estimate for your paint job so you have one less cost to worry about.

Add Everything Up! 

It’s time to take out your calculator and add up the costs from the first four steps. 

This is a rough estimate of the cost of your paint job. The actual price can either increase or decrease depending on various factors. For example, the actual cost may be higher than your estimate if the area you’re painting is in poor condition. If there are a lot of cracks or holes, the paint job will take longer and cost more than if the walls were in good shape.

We’re Here to Help

A paint job can seem daunting, but we’re here to help! Not only do we take care of all these steps for you, but we also execute to high standards and make sure you like the final product. Contact us for a free estimate today!