How Much Does it Cost to Remove Wallpaper?

Typical Range:

$421 - $1,189

Find out how much your project will cost.

Cost data is based on actual project costs as reported by 1,823 HomeAdvisor members. Embed this data

How We Get This Data































  • Homeowners use HomeAdvisor to find pros for home projects.
  • When their projects are done, they fill out a short cost survey.
  • We compile the data and report costs back to you.

Published January 10, 2022

Written by HomeAdvisor.

Wallpaper Removal Costs

For wallpaper removal, most homeowners spend between $421 and $1,189, or an average of about $786. The average cost to remove wallpaper is $3 per square foot in labor and roughly $100 in materials, or about $535 for a 12 foot by 12 foot room. Depending on factors like the number of layers, age, type and accessibility, the cost could range from $136 to $1,540 for the same size room.

New wall coverings can transform a room, taking it from boring to beautiful. But before you can determine the best approach to removing your old wallpaper, several factors could influence the cost:

  • Type (strippable vs. simple sheet, porous vs. vinyl or acrylic),

  • Age,

  • Layers of wallpaper,

  • Height of walls or presence of stairwells,

  • Type of walls (plaster vs. drywall),

  • Damage to underlying walls.

Wallpaper Removal Cost Calculator

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National Average $786
Typical Range $421 - $1,189
Low End - High End $200 - $2,000

Cost data is based on actual project costs as reported by 1,823 HomeAdvisor members.

Average Price to Remove Wallpaper

The average cost to remove wallpaper is $3 per square foot or about $535 for a 12-foot by 12-foot room. Pro will build their quote by examining the size and type of room. For example, rooms with vaulted ceilings might require scaffolding or specialty ladders, which would increase the cost.

The pro will also examine the type of walls and number of layers of wallpaper present to determine a cost per square foot. Keep in mind if the pro finds something unexpected after getting started – such as more layers or unprimed drywall – the per square foot cost could increase since the number of hours of work will grow.

Wallpaper Removal Pricing for a 12-x12-Square-Foot Room
Labor$0.60 - $10 per square footEase of removal, wall type, number of layers, ceiling height or stairways, wall damage.
Materials$50 - $100Scrapers, steamers, glue dissolving solvent, sponges, perforator

Wallpaper Removal Per Room

RoomCost RangeVariables That Could Increase Cost
Living Room$225 - $3,075
  • Vaulted ceilings
  • Multiple layers
  • Vintage wallpaper
Kitchen$175 - $2,050
  • Corners/insets
  • Moving appliances
  • Vaulted ceilings
  • Vintage wallpaper
Bath$115 - $1,075
  • Large master baths
  • Vaulted ceiling
  • Moving toilets or tubs
Foyer$86 - $700
  • Two-story foyers
  • Stairwells
Bedroom$136 - $1,540
  • Master bedrooms
  • Vaulted or tray ceilings
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Cost of Removing Wallpaper Per Square Foot

Most contractors charge around $3 per square foot to remove wallpaper. Some may charge as little as $0.60 per square foot for easy jobs while others may charge up to $10 per square for if it’s more involved. For example, if you need to remove several layers of vintage wallpaper from an unprimed wall, a contractor may charge a higher rate since the project will take longer.

Labor Cost to Have Wallpaper Removed

On average, contractors charge between $500 and $700 for a standard-sized bathroom. While most contractors charge by the square foot, some may offer a set price for an individual room, or they may base their price on the number of rolls of wallpaper that cover the area. So, if the contractor needs to remove what amounts to 10 rolls of wallpaper, he or she would charge you the same amount as he would to hang 10 rolls. Use a wallpaper calculator to help you estimate in this manner.

If unforeseen issues occur, the contractor would then charge an hourly rate (between $30 and $40 per hour) for the extra work.

Drywall vs. Plaster

It’s important to know what type of wall you have, since drywall is more susceptible to water damage. So, before determining the best method for removal, it is important to know how much moisture your walls can take. Since the cost of removal is dependent on the time that it takes, the type of wall you have is important. You can remove wallpaper from either surface, but these factors could influence overall cost:


  • Can tolerate more water so wallpaper can sometimes be removed quicker.

  • Is often old and walls may need repairs, which require a specialized skill set. Drywall

  • Soaks up water so care is required to avoid water damage.

  • Wallpaper hung on unprimed drywall takes longer to remove.

Type of Wall Covering

Dry, strippable paper can be removed very quickly and simply. If a small corner of the wall covering can be easily peeled back, you may be able to strip it. If it doesn't come off easily in one section, or if only the top coating comes off, the pro will use more invasive removal techniques. Some types of wallpaper are notoriously difficult to remove. For example, since it's often painted over, woodchip wallpaper removal requires much more time than traditional wall coverings.

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Professional Wallpaper Stripping or Removal Costs

The cost to remove wallpaper ranges from $136 to $1,540, regardless of the method used. There are several methods, and your contractor will recommend the one that's best for your scenario. Some methods, like stripping, don't require as much labor so they will fall to the cheaper end of the range while steaming or soaking will take more labor hours.

Cost to Strip Wallpaper

Stripping is the simplest removal method and it may cost between $0.60 and $1.50 per square foot or $86 to $216 for a 144-square-foot room.

  • Little prep work or clean up required.

  • Test a section first to ensure it strips as it should.

Soaking & Scraping It Off

If it's not strippable, your contractor may scrape it off.

  • A perforator makes small holes in the paper.

  • Then water and/or an agent to dissolve the glue is sprayed on the wall and allowed to sit.

  • The contractor either peels the panels off the wall or uses a putty knife to scrape it off.

  • Remaining residue or paste is also removed.


Wallpaper can also be steamed off using an electric steamer. If a contractor must rent a steamer, it could increase the cost by around $50.

  • The paper is first perforated.

  • The steamer heats the adhesive so the panels can be peeled off.

  • Some amount of scraping may be necessary if panels don’t come off cleanly.

Cost to Remove Wallpaper Then Paint

Wallpaper removal costs about $3 per square foot or about $535 for a 144-square-foot room. The cost to have the room painted ranges from $380 to $800.

Many painting contractors or handymen provide these services so that you can hire the same pro for both jobs. Since the wall may be wet after the paper is removed, it may be a few days before painting can occur.

DIY vs. Hiring a Wallpaper Removal Service

Removing a wall covering takes time, patience and skill to avoid damaging the wall. That's why it's best to leave this job to the pros. Search for wallpaper removal near me to get the job started today.

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Can a Handyman Do Stripping & Removal?

Many handymen can remove wallpaper. If you have high ceilings, be sure to ask if he or she owns ladders or scaffolding to do the job or needs to rent equipment.

How do I know what kind of walls I have?

In most cases, walls are either drywall or plaster. You can usually tell what you have by the feel (plaster is harder, colder, and smoother than drywall) or by tapping on it (drywall sounds hollow, and plaster doesn't). When in doubt, remove an outlet cover to see the exposed edges.

How can I tell if all the wallpaper glue is removed?

Spray a little water on the wall and rub your hand on it. If it feels slimy, there's still glue on the wall. All the glue must be removed before you can paint or hang new wallpaper.

How long does it take to remove wallpaper?

Removing wallpaper is a time-consuming process. Since there are many variables, it's difficult to give exact times. An experienced professional will be able to remove wallpaper much quicker than a DIYer, especially if it's old, layered or covering unprimed drywall.

Can you paint over wallpaper?

It's not a good idea to paint over wallpaper, especially if it's not in good condition. It's best to remove it first, then paint. The edges or seams of the wallpaper may lift over time, creating a blemish on the wall.

How much does wallpaper installation cost?

The cost to install new wallpaper ranges from about $280 to $720. The type of paper and layout of the room will influence the total cost.

Can I use fabric softener to remove wallpaper?

Some people use diluted fabric softener to remove the paste. It doesn't always work on vintage textiles, though. Fabric softener may also prevent new wallpaper from adhering to the wall.

How much is a steamer?

You can rent an electric steamer for less than $50 a day or you can purchase a consumer model for less than $100. Commercial steamers cost around $1,000. While renting a steamer isn't cost prohibitive, the task is tedious and best left to a professional with the required experience.

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