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How Much Does House Painting Cost?

Last Updated Aug 8, 2017 · Written by Rob Schneider

House painting is a big job that requires working in awkward positions at heights. Because the house exterior is exposed to the elements, it's also a job that needs to be done right if you want lasting results. If you're aware of the challenges and know how to tackle them, painting the outside of your house can be a viable DIY project. Before you buy your paints and supplies, though, find out how much it will cost to have professionals paint your home for you.

© Peter Wright and Associates Pty Ltd Architects

What is the Average Cost of Painting a House?*

As a very rough guide, house painting professionals estimate the cost of painting a house at:

  • $12-$25 per square metre for timber that is in good condition.
  • $18-$30 per square metre for timber that is in poor condition.
  • $12-$16 per square metre for brick.

How can you tell which end of the scale your house painting job will be on? You can get some idea just by imagining what you'll be facing if you decide to do the job yourself:

  • Is your house on a level block? If so, the job will be easier for the painters, so will probably cost less.
  • Are there plants and other obstructions in the way? If the answer is yes, the cost will probably be a little higher.
  • Is it a single storey or two storey house? If scaffolding is needed, painters will factor the cost of the scaffolding and extra labour into their quotes.
  • Do you want a separate treatment for your fascia? If so, the painters will consider that a separate job that requires greater time and attention to detail.

Aside from these details, different painters charge different hourly rates. Their hourly rates can vary dramatically, from $30 to $50 or more per hour. However, a painter's hourly rate is a poor indicator of the actual cost of the job. A less experienced painter might work for $30 per hour but take twice as long to complete the job as a more experienced painter who works more efficiently.

When you get quotes from exterior painters, ask for quotes for the entire job rather than what their hourly rate is. If you give them details about the scope of the job and the details outlined above ahead of time, you are more likely to get more accurate quotes before they come and inspect your property in person. Rather than settle on the lowest quote, inspect previous examples of the painters' work first and if possible, speak to a few of their customers in person. A good painter will not allow paint to drip or spill, be sure not to damage plants and leave the property looking better than it looked before they arrived. That kind of service is worth paying a little more for.

*Cost and prices in this article are indicative and should only be used as a guide. They also vary locally and are subject to market forces.

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