How Much Does it Cost to Paint a Ceiling?
$741 - $2,664
$741 - $2,664
Cost data is based on research by HomeAdvisor.
Updated August 16, 2021Written by HomeAdvisor.
Painting the average 12-foot by 12-foot room ceiling runs $150 to $350 depending on your location and the quality of the paint. For two coats, increase that price by 50%. On average, you’ll pay $1 to $2.50 per square foot. Doing a 2,500 square foot house would cost about $0.50 per square foot less than just a single room.
Most of your budget goes to labor, with setup, prep and cleanup taking longer than the actual painting. Most contractors figure costs per square foot but will provide you with a total project quote. They also tend to have a $200 to $300 minimum charge, regardless of the size of project.
|Average Cost||$1-$2.50 per square foot|
|High Cost||$3+ per square foot|
|Low Cost||$0.50 per square foot|
It’ll cost you anywhere from $0.50 to $3.00 per square foot to paint a ceiling. For smaller projects, like a single room, expect pricing to increase to $1 and up per square foot. Smaller jobs tend to cost more per square foot because of overhead costs, like fuel, insurance, travel and most supplies. A painter’s overhead stays about the same, regardless of the size of the project.
One gallon of paint costs $20 to $60. You’ll cover 350 to 400 square feet of ceiling with one coat per gallon. This means you’ll need just under one gallon per 12- by 12-foot room.
Popcorn ceiling painting costs $1 to $3 per square foot, though you’ll end up using slightly more product to cover the surface. Though functional, it’s not currently stylish.
Removing popcorn ceilings costs $800 to $2,500 depending on the area. It’ll add $1 to $2 per square foot for a total removal and painting cost of $2 to $5 per square foot.
Painting a drop ceiling costs $1 to $3 per square foot. In most cases, you’ll cover the actual grid the tiles sit in and replace any tiles with new ones.
Drop ceiling installation costs $1,000 to $2,300. Though it runs slightly more, it’s usually a better option to maintain its acoustic functionality.
Note: For commercial purposes, painting a drop ceiling can both void the warranty and may break fire or building codes. Always check with your contractor about possible code violation before attempting this yourself.
Overall, painting trim costs $500 to $1,500 for a 1,500 square foot home. Crown molding is a type of interior trim at the place where the wall meets the ceiling. Painting it runs $1 to $3.50 per linear foot. However, if you’re painting it at the same time and the same color as your ceiling, expect it to only add $0.50 to $1.50 to your project.
Painting a basement ceiling costs anywhere from $500 to $4,500 depending on square footage. Your price could increase for exposed beams, ductwork or electrical. Since each one is unique, it’s best to talk with your contractor about specific costs associated with your project.
While the process on exposed ceilings cost the same as any other type, or $1 to $3 per square foot, prep work and varying types of materials can quickly double that price. Covering an exposed basement ceiling is a popular way to blend the exposed electrical work, ducts and beams together.
Painting your ceiling black runs $1,000 to $3,000 for 1,000 square feet. Black helps blend the ceiling components together. All the beams, electrical and ductwork seemingly disappears for half the cost of a dropped ceiling. Unfortunately, it makes the space seem smaller and its tough to redo it in any other color. Consider white instead of black.
You’ll need one gallon for every 300 to 400 square feet. The average 2,500 square foot home needs six to seven gallons for a single coat. For more on finding the amount of paint you need for your project, use our paint calculator.
The largest cost associated with painting is time. If you plan to DIY, you’ll need supplies like drop cloths, brushes, rollers, thinner and masking tape. In total, you can expect to spend $200 to $600 on supplies.
Professional labor runs $25 to $75 per hour, but they can get the job done in a fraction of the time as a homeowner without mistakes. Ask yourself what your time is worth and then find a local painter near you for a free consultation and quote.
Some common DIY mistakes include:
Uneven coating. This leaves ghosting of roller or brush marks and varying shades on the ceiling.
Not covering all surfaces. Think paint on the furniture, carpet and drapes.
Not removing old paint or peeling surfaces. Improper prep leads to quick failure of the new coat.
Under or over thinning of paint. This results in streaks and runs.
If you’re going to DIY a paint project, find out how to paint a ceiling before starting.
Painting a room costs $200 to $600 for a ten-foot-by-ten-foot space. Larger rooms can double the price.
Coating a single bathroom ceiling costs $150 to $300 unless it’s part of a larger home project. Typically, professionals have a minimum fee they charge, often $150 or more, regardless of how small the job is. The average bathroom is 40 to 70 square feet.
Ceiling repairs cost $300 to $1,000 depending on the extent of the damage and type of materials involved.
Painting beadboard or tongue and groove ceilings cost $225 to $450 for a 150 square foot room.