Your Go-To Paint Cost Guide

Don't skip the research – find out how price comes into play when painting any space within your home.

From painting a single cabinet in your kitchen to completely revamping your exterior with a new paint job, paint has the ability to completely transform your home's character and style. Like any remodeling project, cost of materials and your overall budget are important factors that influence the final outcome of your painting project. Before you dive in paint brush first, take some time to think about the average cost of paint and tools, what type of paint is best for your home, and if you need to enlist the help of a painting contractor.

How Much Does Paint Cost?

Depending on the type of paint and how large of an area you end up painting, the price can vary from budget-friendly to splurge-worthy. The average homeowner can expect to spend around $1,697 on interior paint and $2,647 on exterior paint. In terms of cost, it all depends on what style you want to achieve for your living space and whether you prioritize a particular room or the entire house.

Interior Painting Costs

There are tons of options when it comes to interior painting, such as the finish, the design, the texture, and more. Depending on what style and vibe you want to attain, all of the different options can alter what price you will pay.

Painting One Room

If you're painting an entire room, the price can range anywhere from around $400 to $800 or more. Keep in mind that this does not include the more detailed aspects of painting, such as trim and crown molding, that can add more character and originality to a living space.

Painting Multiple Rooms

If you're looking to paint the entire interior of a home, you will want to multiply how many rooms you have by the numbers listed above. Make sure to keep in mind larger living spaces that have longer or taller walls — these will add more to the painting budget. For accurate pricing and measurements, we recommend working with a local painting contractor.

Find a Painting Contractor 

Research Your Paint Options

To find your perfect paint, it's important to research which styles appeal to you, along with what designs are realistic to create within your budget. Due to the endless combinations of home designs and paint styles, it's always a good idea to contact a local contractor to get a cost estimate and to see what type of paint will work well in your home.

Water-Based or Oil-Based Paint?

Choosing between water- or oil-based paint isn't a make-or-break decision, but it can accomplish different outcomes on your surface. Water-based paint is more environmentally friendly and quick to dry, while oil-based paint leaves a glossier finish and is best for floors or exterior paint because of its durability.

Flat, Matte, and More

In terms of interior paint, think about what kind of finish you want your wall to have. Flat paint has a slight shine, while matte paint absorbs light and creates a heavier layer on the wall. These paints typically cost anywhere from $30 to $60 a gallon, with matte paint usually being a bit more expensive than flat.

Other types of interior paint include eggshell, semi-gloss, high-gloss, and much more, all varying in sheen, density, and overall price. To ensure you pick the right paint for your project, contact a local paint contractor for specific advice.

Find the Best Paint Color

Finding the best paint color for your home may be worth the splurge. Higher quality paint leaves a much thicker and firmer layer than lower quality paint, which will result in a more resilient paint job that will last for years to come. A high-quality paint also tends to be more pigmented than a lower quality, requiring fewer physical layers of paint. Applying fewer coats of paint may end up being more cost effective for you in the long run!

More Painting Tips

Home Painting Preparation

You'll need to prep before you start rolling. For interior painting, this means clearing the room of all furniture to ensure no spills end up on any of the decor. If you're not able to store the furniture in a separate space, push the furniture toward the center of the room to avoid it accidentally touching the paint. A protective tarp or plastic layer is recommended if you decide to keep the furniture in the room.

You'll need drop cloths for exterior paint projects too! Gently cover and tie up flowerbeds and shrubs to protect your landscape. Exterior paint preparation is a bit more extensive than interior prep, involving scraping away loose paint, repairing surface flaws, sanding the surface, and priming bare wood.

Pre-Paint Cleanup

Before painting inside your home, the walls should be free of any oils, greases, dust, and dirt. Clean walls ensure that the paint will fully adhere and last for as long as possible. There are several different mixtures you can create to wash the wall — some prefer dish detergent while others prefer cleaning with distilled white vinegar. You can also purchase foaming wall cleansers or cleansing sponges from a hardware store near you. If you plan to hire a painting contractor, confirm whether or not their estimate includes cleaning the walls for you.

Exterior surfaces require a good cleaning before paint is applied as well. The best way to clean the outside of your home is by pressure washing. Warning: Improper use of a pressure washer can cause serious damage to your home's surface and siding. If you're not comfortable using high-power equipment, a contractor can handle this process for you.

Cover Up With Painters Tape

Painters tape is an inexpensive and essential tool for protecting areas that you do not want painted such as ceilings, ceiling fans, and electrical outlets. Painters tape is also handy for creating clean lines. If you want to add some pizzazz to your walls, painters tape is extremely helpful in creating horizontal, vertical, or even diagonal lines. Your painting contractor can apply painters tape throughout the areas that will be painted before they begin the project.

Get Prepped for Paint

Painting Doors

Whether you're painting a kitchen cabinet, garage door, or a regular wooden door, the cost will vary depending on the door's size and type of paint used. To repaint all kitchen cabinets, you may have to plan on spending upwards of $1,000. For a regular wooden door within your house, expect to pay anywhere from $100 to $400. A garage door will be a bit pricier due to the larger area that will require more paint.


Remember to evaluate each door before you start painting and ask yourself: Does it have any damage? Cracks? Bubbling of the original paint? These flaws are warning signs that a door may have to be painted professionally and should be examined by a local contractor.

More Painting Advice


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