How Much Does it Cost to Paint Interior or Exterior Trim?
$500 - $1,500
$500 - $1,500
Cost data is based on research by HomeAdvisor.
Updated July 20, 2020Written by HomeAdvisor.
Painting trim on a 1,500-square-foot home with 500 linear feet of trim will cost $500 to $1,500 with an average cost of $700. Painting a porch to match adds $500 to $2,000. Shutters and soffits average $50 per piece. Most professionals charge $20 to $75 per hour. Detailed work, such as scroll work around eaves, molding and trim around sidelights and transom windows can double the total price.
Repainting your molding, baseboards, wainscoting, windows and doors can renew the beauty of those areas without costing you a fortune on replacement. Working on trim is time-consuming and requires patience. Use a small brush, as rollers are too large for most trim.
*Per 500 linear feet
Painting exterior trim costs the same as interior, or about $1 to $3 per linear foot including both materials and labor. Adding difficult to reach areas, like dormers and second floor trim or soffits can add $1+ per linear foot.
Make sure to purchase exterior paint. It has additives to resist fading from sunlight (UV rays) and molds and mildew. Interior paint additives give it better resistance to cleaners and scrubbing. Despite these differences, the price remains the same with many brands. However, a few brands charge up to 25% more for their exterior varieties
Painting eaves, fascia and soffits all cost $2.50 to $6.00 per linear foot. This project is often combined with trim or overall exterior painting.
Interior trim painting, much like exterior, averages most between $500 and $1,500 for a standard 1,500-square-foot home. Although interior trim is often narrower than its exterior counterpart, it requires just as much time. The professional uses a smaller brush and must attend to more detailed work.
Expect your professional to quote you a price that includes all labor, paint and supplies. It might get tempting to search for a deal on materials yourself, but it’s best to leave this to your contractor for a couple reasons:
Professionals get paint for 30% to 50% cheaper than you can find it.
They’ll know the best type and brand to use for each home and material type.
If you decide to get your own paint, make sure it’s designed for interiors. Although there’s no cost difference between exterior and interior, it’s formulated to stand up to cleaning and daily use.
Painting interior trim costs $1 to $3 per linear foot. It’s often more expensive than exterior trim due to the slightly longer prep time. There is typically more linear feet of trim inside a home than outside due to the interior doors.
Painting crown molding or casements tends to run $1 to $3.50 per linear foot including labor and materials. Both are types of trim. You’ll find crown molding where the wall meets the ceiling while you’ll find casements around doors and windows. If you don’t have any, crown molding installation costs $600 to $1,600. It’s about double the price of painting and adds a classic touch to your home.
Baseboard, a specific type of trim, costs $1 to $5 per linear foot to paint. Because they are often much wider than casement or other types of trim, the job requires slightly more time to complete, and more materials.
Overall, you’ll spend $100 to $1,000 per window. Total price depends on the size of the opening, if there are shutters, if the frame needs updating, and how ornate the window structure is. For example, you’ll pay $100 to $200 for a single sash window with a basic frame and trim compared to the $1,000+ price for a French picture window with shutters or a transom window with ornate trim.
|Shutters||$50 - $150 each|
|Trim||$50 - $200 each|
|Frame||$150 - $600 each|
The type of material, such as wood, metal or vinyl, plays a small role in prep time and the type of paint you’ll use. However, the costs remain similar. . Discuss the material type you have with your contractor for specifics.
Painting window trim costs an average of $1 to $3 per linear foot. Double that for large or ornate frames. You need to note that the trim and frame on the inside of the house requires interior paint while the outside requires exterior. This could increase the cost slightly for small projects.
Each gallon covers 350 to 400 square feet with one coat. In most cases, you’ll want two coats. For trim, determine the overall linear feet you’ll need painted. This is true for both interior and exterior spaces. Don’t forget to add extra footage for each door and window. If you’re coating entire walls, use our material paint calculator.
If you have the time and a little experience, painting trim can be a great DIY project. You’ll spend about $200 to $600 on supplies. To do this yourself, you’ll need at least a weekend to prep, do the work and clean up. Although it’s forgiving and easy to correct mistakes, it also adds to the time. For quick professional results, hire a painter near you today.
If you decide to do the exterior trim of your home, always begin at the corner and brush smoothly away from it. Use a brush made for small panels. Do not try to add another coat before the first layer has dried completely. Remove the windows and doors if possible; otherwise, apply painter's tape to avoid blotches.
Here are some other tips to ensure a professional and smooth exterior trim job:
Prepare the surface with a shaver or hand scraper.
Sand afterward and apply epoxy or caulk as needed, depending on the material of the trim.
Make sure any caulking or epoxy applied has thoroughly dried.
Clean the trim with a mixture of water and bleach and use stiff, bristled brush to get rid of dirt, mold and grime. Rinse thoroughly before applying coating.
If you have wood trim, you will need to apply a layer of primer before the first coat. You should use primer that repels water and preserves the wood.
Approach gables, eaves, dormers, windows, porches, stairs and gutters from the top down. Use a paint shield if needed and scrape away the splatters.
Windowsills worn down by the elements might need additional coats.
Depending on the size of your home, it’ll cost anywhere from $1,500 to $7,000 or more to paint everything together.
You should caulk baseboards before painting, not after. It’s not required but helps remove unsightly gaps between the baseboard and the floor and walls. Contractors include any caulking in their price at $1 to $3 per linear foot.
You can use almost any type that matches the materials of your baseboards and trim. While trim paint exists, it’s not much different from the standard stuff.
It’ll cost $1.50 to $4 per foot to remove existing trim paint depending on the size of the molding and the methods required to remove it.
To prep trim, follow these steps
Remove old paint.
Sanding as needed.
Caulk and make any repairs as necessary.
Tape off the trim.
White is a common color for wood trim since it stands in contrast to most other colors. Because it’s common, it’s good to use when trying to sell your home.
It’ll take anywhere from 5 to 25 hours depending on how much trim you have, how ornate it is and the experience level of the professional.