How Much Does It Cost to Paint a House Exterior?
$1,810 - $4,504
$1,810 - $4,504
Updated May 23, 2022Reviewed by Robert Tschudi, Expert Home Building and Remodeling Contributor.
It costs around $3,143 to paint the exterior of a 1,500-square-foot home. You could pay anywhere between $1,810 and $4,504 to paint the outside of a house of this size. A smaller home of around 1,100 square feet could cost as little as $2,500, while painting the exterior of a larger property of up to 3,500 square feet could cost as much as $13,000.
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|Typical Range||$1,810 - $4,504|
|Low End - High End||$600 - $7,500|
Cost data is based on actual project costs as reported by 38,007 HomeAdvisor members.
Because house painting is charged per square foot, the larger your house, the more you'll pay to have the exterior painted. However, when working out square footage, remember that you need to find the total paintable area, not the actual square footage of your home.
To do that, work out the square footage of the exterior walls, then subtract the square footage occupied by windows and doors. As a rule of thumb, a standard door measures 21 square feet, and an average window measures 12 square feet.
All in, it costs $1.50 to $4 per square foot to paint a house exterior. How much you'll pay depends on the complexity of the job, how accessible your property is, and how much prep work needs to be undertaken to get the existing exterior clean, free of debris, and ready to paint. If the contractor uncovers problems such as rot or damaged siding and sheathing, they'll need to fix it before they can paint, which adds to your labor costs.
The table below gives you common paintable area sizes and their associated costs. Remember to add 10% to 15% to these figures to give yourself a buffer in case of unforeseen problems that need remediation.
|Paintable Area||Cost Range (All-In)||Average Cost (All-In)|
|800 sq.ft.||$1,200 – $3,000||$2,100|
|1,000 sq.ft.||$1,500 – $3,500||$2,500|
|1,200 sq.ft.||$1,800 – $4,800||$3,300|
|1,500 sq.ft.||$2,250 – $5,800||$4,000|
|1,600 sq.ft.||$2,400 – $6,400||$4,400|
|2,000 sq.ft.||$3,000 – $7,700||$5,300|
|2,500 sq.ft.||$3,750 – $9,750||$6,700|
|Home Size||Square Footage (Estimated)||Total Cost Range|
|Single story||1,000 – 1,500||$1,500 – $3,500|
|Two story||1,500 – 2,500||$3,000 – $6,200|
|Three story||2,500 – 3,000||$4,500 – $10,000+|
A two-story home can cost as much as 50% more to paint than a one-story home. The harder it is to reach an area, the more time spent adjusting scaffolding and ladders. More time spent on a job equals higher costs.
The cost to paint a small house runs $1,500 to $3,500. A 1,000-square-foot home with little prep on one story might only take $1,500 in some areas, while the same square footage in a two-story house with limited accessibility might reach $4,000 or more. Height adds cost. Expect these increases:
Add 30% above 8 feet.
Add 60% above 13 feet.
Add 90% above 17 feet.
Add 120% above 19 feet.
Aside from the actual cost of paint and the labor required to apply it, there are a variety of other cost factors that influence the final price of your house exterior painting project. Location, climate, and the amount of prep work all directly impact how much your contractor will charge for the work.
Labor costs between $1 and $2 per square foot. This equates to between $25 to $100 per hour, per painter. This includes the cost of priming and painting. If the exterior doesn't need priming, you can reduce this cost by 50%. However, if any remedial work is necessary, the labor cost can increase by 100% or more, depending on the problem that needs rectifying.
Your geographic location can impact the project’s total cost. For example, in Deltona, Florida, the average house painting cost is $1,400 to $3,300. However, the same job in Los Angeles typically costs $2,900 to $6,200—which is twice as much.
The climate impacts the type of paint, the working conditions, and therefore the cost. Working in adverse conditions, such as extreme heat or cold, can increase labor costs by 50%. Additionally, specialist paint, such as that used in storm-prone climates to withstand repeated batterings from bad weather, storm damage, and moisture damage, is up to twice as expensive as standard exterior paint.
Prepping a house costs anywhere from $0.50 to $2.50 per square foot; the total price almost always includes prep work. However, the DIYer might negotiate some discounts for completing this work on their own. Be warned, proper prep is key to the quality and durability of the finish. If you do this work yourself, the contractor might not guarantee the finished product.
Patching: $0.50–$1.50 per square foot.
Repairs vary by material type but expect to pay anywhere from $25–$50 per hour.
Scraping, sanding, and stripping: $0.50–$2.50 per square foot.
Power washing costs $200–$400.
Caulking and masking: $0.50–$1 per square foot.
Per gallon, outdoor paint costs from $20 to $80. But remember that some types of paint and some surfaces, such as stucco and wood, require additional coats to get a good finish.
Purchase the best quality paint you can for this project, as it'll last longer, look better, and provide more protection for your home. When shopping for paint, keep in mind that good quality tends to come with a higher price. More expensive paint typically has a higher volume of solids and better quality ingredients. You can ask hardware store associates for their paint recommendations to decide what will work best for your project.
Painting trim costs $1 to $6 per linear foot. Remember to account for both window and door trim if you want a cohesive finish. If you’re getting your trim done at the same time as the siding, your contractor includes this in the quote.
Permits for this type of work generally cost around $200 to $300. While standard exterior painting doesn't require a permit, if you're having any remedial work done as part of the job, such as replacing siding, you may need a permit.
Stripping paint costs $0.50 to $2 per square foot. You may not need the whole house stripping, but section of bubbled, flaky paint may require stripping as part of the prep work.
If your home was built before 1978, you may still have lead paint on the exterior siding. That requires specialist intervention to keep everyone safe and to reduce the risk of contaminating the soil around your home. Lead paint removal costs $8 to $17 per square foot.
Painting siding costs between $0.50 and $5 per square foot. This price depends on the type of siding, as different siding varieties require differing prep work, number of coats, and quantities of paint to get a good finish.
|Siding Material||Cost Range (All-In)||Average Cost (All-In)|
|Vinyl||$1 – $3 per sq. ft||$2 per sq. ft|
|Engineered Wood||$1 – $2 per sq. ft||$1.50 per sq. ft|
|Concrete||$1.20 – $2.70 per sq. ft||$1.90 per sq. ft|
|Wood||$1 – $3 per sq. ft||$2 per sq. ft|
|Steel||$1.50 – $2.50 per sq. ft||$2 per sq. ft|
|Fiber Cement||$1.20 – $3.20 per sq. ft||$2.20 per sq. ft|
|Stucco||$1.50 – $4 per sq. ft||$2.70 per sq. ft|
|Aluminum||$1.50 – $2.50 per sq. ft||$2 per sq. ft|
|Brick||$2.40 – $4.20 per sq. ft||$3.30 per sq. ft|
|Stone||$2.40 – $5 per sq. ft||$3.70 per sq. ft|
Painting vinyl siding costs $1 to $3 per square foot. To paint 1,000 square feet, expect to pay between $500 and $2,500. If the vinyl is in reasonably good condition, painting rather than replacing can save you a significant sum, given that the cost to replace vinyl siding is between $3 and $12 per square foot.
Engineered wood siding costs between $1 and $2 per square foot to paint, so the cost to paint 1,000 square feet is between $1,000 and $2,000. Engineered wood is usually pre-primed so unless you're making a drastic color change or there's a lot of damage that needs fixing, it shouldn't need priming, which helps to minimize costs.
Painting concrete siding costs between $1.20 and $2.70 per square foot in ideal conditions. Painting 1,000 square feet of paintintable area costs anywhere from $1,200 to $2,700.
However, costs often increase with concrete, because it's porous, so it usually requires stripping and priming, and often requires additional layers of paint for a good finish, which can double the project costs. It may also need resurfacing and sealing. Resurfacing concrete costs $3,000 to $5,000 per 1,000 square feet.
The cost to paint wood siding is $1 to $3 per square foot, or $1,000 to $3,000 for 1,000 square feet of paintiable area, not including trim. Because even the best wood siding is prone to rot and moisture problems, yours might require some repair or remedial work before you prime and paint. This can increase costs, but, in general, wood siding is easy to paint and care for.
Painting steel siding costs $1.50 to $2.50per square foot, or $1,500 to $2,500 per 1,000 paintable square feet. Steel siding is extremely durable and non-porous, so it doesn't actually need painting, but it is paintable and doesn’t usually require priming.
The cost to paint fiber cement siding is between $1.20 and $3.20 per square foot. So, to paint 1,000 square feet of fiber cement siding, expect to pay $1,200 to $3,200. Fiber cement requires less paint because it's non-porous. Plus, it generally comes pre-primed, further reducing costs.
Painting stucco siding costs between $1.50 and $4 per square foot, putting the total at $1,500 to $4,000 to paint a 1,000-square-foot area. However, given the similar cost of installing new stucco siding, it may be more cost-effective over the long term to simply replace the siding rather than repaint it.
Before painting can begin, stucco siding usually requires extensive and time-consuming prep work, including repairs like caulking and filling gaps. Additionally, because the surface is so heavily textured, it requires around 50% more paint than smoother surfaces.
The cost to paint aluminum siding is between $1.50 and $2.50 per square foot. Painting 1,000 square feet of aluminum siding costs $1,500 to $2,500. While not essential for aluminum siding, a coat of paint can further protect the siding from moisture damage and weather extremes. Generally, aluminum siding requires minimal prep work, but if the existing paint is badly chipping and flaking, it may require stripping and priming before painting.
Painting brick siding costs $1.40 to $4.20 per square foot, or $1,400 to $4,200 per 1,000 square feet. It's among the most costly to paint because brick is porous and has an extremely rough texture, so requires priming and uses more paint than smoother, non-porous surfaces.
Painting stone siding costs $2.40 to $5 per square foot, or $2,400 to $5,000 per 1,000 square feet. Stone veneer siding doesn't require painting, but if a homeowner wants to change the look of their siding or get a different finish without the cost of replacing their siding, then painting over stone is a valid option. But it's costly. Because stone is porous and rough, it requires sealing and takes much more paint than smooth siding like vinyl.
Aside from the prep work and painting the siding and trim, there are many other painting costs you may want to factor into your budget if you want to give your whole home a fresh new look.
|Additional Exterior Painting||Cost Range (All-In)||Average Cost (All-In)|
|Trim||$1 – $3 per linear ft.||$2 per linear ft.|
|Fascia||$2.50 – $5.50 per sq.ft.||$4 per sq.ft.|
|Shutters||$50 – $150||$100|
|Window Sashes||$100 – $200||$150|
|Door||$100 – $500||$300|
|Garage Door||$200 – $500||$350|
|Gutters||$200 – $800||$500|
|Porches||$500 – $2,000||$1,200|
While this is technically a DIY project, it's time-consuming. You'll need at least two or three weeks to get the job done. Plus you need to be confident working at a height, and you need the basic DIY skills to repair any damage to the siding or trim before you paint.
Keep in mind that every mistake you make and have to fix takes extra time, although it won't cost much extra money. But unless you have plenty of experience and the right skill set, a professional will still give you a quicker and better finish, so consider hiring a local house painter instead of tackling this job yourself.
It’ll cost you between $500 and $1,000 to paint the exterior yourself. You may end up spending more if you buy high-quality products from specialized shops. Professionals can get the same supplies for about half of what you’ll pay.
|Painting Supplies||Cost Range||Average Cost|
|Brushes||$5 – $90||$45|
|Rollers and Rolling Handles||$15 – $30||$22|
|Sprayer and Power Rollers||$100 – $2,000||$1,050|
|Buckets||$2 – $5||$3.50|
|Drop Cloths||$10 – $30 each||$20|
|Pans||$2 – $10||$6|
|Caulk||$2 – $8 per tube||$5|
|Masking Tape||$2 – $5 per roll||$3.50|
|Sandpaper||$2 – $5 per roll||$3.50|
|Masking Tape||$ – $15||$9|
|Scrapers||$5 – $30||$17.50|
|Ladder||$100 – $300||$200|
While painting a home's exterior can be a costly project, there are a number of steps you can take to save money when hiring a pro for this job.
Maintain your siding: Keeping your home's exterior clean and in good repair reduces the amount of remedial work and prep work your chosen pro has to get through before they can start painting.
Choose the best quality products you can afford: While it sounds counterintuitive to spend more, it saves you money in the long run. High-quality paint lasts longer and better protects your home from the elements. Buying the lowest priced paint is a waste of money that means your siding may suffer water damage or weather damage. Plus, you'll have to have your home painted more frequently, costing you more in both supplies and labor.
Wait until the off season: Be flexible with your timing and avoid booking the project during peak times. You can save a lot by waiting until winter or watching for special promotions run by local house painters around major holidays.
Do the prep yourself: While you might not be able to tackle the entire project, you can save money by doing as much as possible yourself. Clear the area around your home and give your siding a thorough clean. Sand away any areas of flaking or bubbling paint and look for any obvious minor damage you can repair yourself.
Get multiple quotes: Don't just take the first bid you get. Interview potential contractors, hire a painter, and look at their itemized quotes before you make your decision.
Consider bundling jobs: Instead of having your home's exterior painted now, then the interior painted six months later, consider having it all done at once. This is more expensive overall and could be more of a logistical headache, but you may get a substantial discount by doing both jobs together.
Exterior paint costs around $20 to $80 per gallon, while interior paint costs around $20 to $30 per gallon. Outside paints tend to be pricier because they need to withstand the elements, such as abrasion, moisture, and color corrosion from the sun. In addition, painting the outside of a home is more costly at around $3,060, while painting a home interior costs around $1,920.
Lead paint inspections cost approximately $220 to $420, and removing lead paint costs around $8 to $17 per square foot. Your home may have been painted with lead paint if it was built before 1978. You can test for lead by hiring an abatement pro. If they recommend removing the old paint from the walls, contact a lead paint removal pro near you.
Commercial painters charge between $2 and $6 per square foot, which equates to $60 to $100 per hour.
Use our paint calculator to determine how many gallons of paint needed for your project. The average gallon of exterior paint covers 350 square feet in a single coat. So, a 1,500-square-foot home with a paintable area of 1,100 square feet requires 7 gallons of paint for a two-coat application.
Work it out like this: Paintable square feet / square feet of paint coverage = the number of gallons you need.
In this case: 1,100/350 = 3.14x2 = 6.28
Round up, as it's always better to have too much paint than not enough. In the example above, you'll need 7 gallons of paint. You may also need at least one coat of primer, depending on the type of paint and the condition of your exterior.
You may need to repaint the home exterior every five to 10 years, depending on your climate, the quality of the previous paint job, and the material of your exterior walls. Below are some general guidelines on how often you should repaint various surfaces:
Aluminum: 5 years
Wood: 3–7 years
Painted brick: 15–20 years
If you notice your paint chipping or cracking, it may be a sign that you need to repaint your home sooner.