Cost to Paint a Room – 2021

| Last Updated: November 24, 2021

National Average Improvement and Repair Cost







$ 1842

$ 305

Would you do this project? According to our survey, 48% of respondents preferred DIY compared to hiring a pro.

The average price to Paint a Room noted above is cost data to compare a contractor’s estimate with doing it yourself.

How much does it cost to paint a room? Save 83 percent by painting a room yourself compared with hiring a contractor. You can paint a 15-by-20-foot room for $305 compared with the contractor’s charge of $1,842.

When money is tight and a room needs a facelift, there’s no easier, cheaper, or faster fix-up than a coat of paint. Paint brightens dull walls and creates a fresh, new feeling in a room and a uniform backdrop for furnishings. This is a no-brainer job even for a beginning DIYer because it’s goof-proof; the paint and equipment are relatively inexpensive and you learn the skills on the job. It’s no surprise, then, that painting is the most popular DIY project.

Here’s what to figure if you’re planning a painting budget. A contractor will charge $1,842 to prepare and paint one coat of latex paint on the ceiling, walls, and woodwork of a 15-by-20-foot room (900 square feet) with two windows and two doors. This includes the labor and material.

A handy homeowner can buy the paint and equipment for $305 and do the job himself, saving 83 percent. Timewise you’ll put in about 30-plus man-hours to paint a room. If there’s two of you on the job that’s a long weekend project well worth the time.

To get the most professional-looking results, plan to spend more time preparing the surfaces than actually applying the paint. Fill any nail holes or nicks in the walls with a wallboard repair compound and sand them smooth. Do the same to any damaged woodwork or trim using a wood repair compound. Apply a stain block primer like Kilz to any stains to prevent them from re-emerging through the new coat of paint.

Not sure what method to use to apply paint? Read our guide on Paint Sprayer vs Roller--or go ahead and check our review of the best paint sprayers on the market today.

If you’re painting a high spot on a wall or ceiling from a ladder, avoid any mishaps that might happen using a gallon of paint. Pour some paint in a small container like a coffee can or a paper or plastic paint pail and carry it up the ladder. It’ll fit more easily on the ladder tray and be easier for you to handle. Even if you do tip over the paint, you’ll have less to clean up.

Paint your room online with Glidden’s Room Visualizer.

That sums it up. Knowing the average cost to paint a room lets you compare doing it yourself with what you can expect to pay a contractor.

Welcome! We hope you’ll find the job costs of home improvement projects useful when you’re deciding whether to do a job yourself vs. hire a contractor. We’re the authors of 20 home improvement books, most notably Home Improvement for Dummies©, Bathroom Remodeling for Dummies©, Carpentry for Dummies©, Plumbing for Dummies©, and Painting and Wallpapering for Dummies©. Our most recent book Fix It and Flip It is in its second edition. We’ve appeared as home improvement experts on television programs such as CNN, Dateline, the Today Show, HGTV and many others.