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professional painters - $800 to paint a 500 sq. ft. condo?

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  • Jan 10th, 2010 9:57 pm
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Deal Addict
Dec 8, 2008
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professional painters - $800 to paint a 500 sq. ft. condo?

would you say this is a reasonable price? i know that it costs a lot less when you DIY but i have no time and a back problem.

i am only painting the living/dining room and open concept kitchen + hallway, plus the doors (in white). this seemed really high to me but the painter was almost offended when i try to lower the price. anyone have any experience with hiring a professional painter for your home?
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Member
Feb 14, 2005
368 posts
8 upvotes
As a comparison, I'm painting my place too that is around 500 square feet.

Having absolutely no supplies or experience, it has cost me roughly 250 dollars in raw materials and tools (~4 gallons of Behr primer+paint, rollers, trays, painters tape, etc), and around 10-12 hours painting and driving around. I'm still not finished yet, as I've only done half the apartment and only one coat of paint.

If you're painting over finished walls, there's some prep work that needs to be done, such as filling in cracks/holes, or sanding off imperfections. Most of the time is actually in the prep work. Do you think your time is worth $550?

Depending on how many colours you want (for reference I have 3 colours), paint is around 50 dollars a gallon, which would cover 250-400 square feet for a single coat. You generally need two or more coats for nice finish.
[OP]
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Dec 8, 2008
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raxen wrote:
Jan 9th, 2010 5:05 pm
As a comparison, I'm painting my place too that is around 500 square feet.

Having absolutely no supplies or experience, it has cost me roughly 250 dollars in raw materials and tools (~4 gallons of Behr primer+paint, rollers, trays, painters tape, etc), and around 10-12 hours painting and driving around. I'm still not finished yet, as I've only done half the apartment and only one coat of paint.

If you're painting over finished walls, there's some prep work that needs to be done, such as filling in cracks/holes, or sanding off imperfections. Most of the time is actually in the prep work. Do you think your time is worth $550?

Depending on how many colours you want (for reference I have 3 colours), paint is around 50 dollars a gallon, which would cover 250-400 square feet for a single coat. You generally need two or more coats for nice finish.
i'm actually not painting the bedroom/washroom/closet, so it's really a 22' x 16' area which include my living/dining and an open concept kitchen. but i really have no experience when it comes to the prep work you mentioned (filling in cracks/holes, etc.), so maybe $800 is not so bad being that this person is a professional painter who does this for living. thanks for your input.
Member
Feb 14, 2005
368 posts
8 upvotes
If you're only painting 22'x16', I would say it is pretty expensive. Raw materials wise you can get away with spending 200 dollars. 2 gallons worth of paint+primer (behr premium plus paint) should cover everything.

Are your walls in really bad shape with lots of work needed? Got friends willing to do some manual labour for you? You'll need to tape off the trim and ceiling, but overall, you should be done within a day leaving 8 hours between coats. A pack of beers and pizza delivery to feed your buddies will be much less than 800.
Deal Addict
Apr 1, 2004
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I've painted like 3 apartments in the last few years.... and after hiring a pro for the 4th.... never again will I do it myself.

Send me a PM if you want my guy's phone number. Faster, higher quality, and at the end of the day, cheap given the amount of time it takes to do it yourself. Even the trim looked a million times better since he freehanded it taking into account the contour of the wall, as compared to my straight-edge taping.

Last apartment I had done.... 600 sq ft 1bd, inc. kitchen, bathroom, and closets, trim, and doors..... under 900 in total I think.
Deal Addict
Mar 3, 2004
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raxen wrote:
Jan 9th, 2010 8:07 pm
If you're only painting 22'x16', I would say it is pretty expensive. Raw materials wise you can get away with spending 200 dollars. 2 gallons worth of paint+primer (behr premium plus paint) should cover everything.

Are your walls in really bad shape with lots of work needed? Got friends willing to do some manual labour for you? You'll need to tape off the trim and ceiling, but overall, you should be done within a day leaving 8 hours between coats. A pack of beers and pizza delivery to feed your buddies will be much less than 800.
horray for taking advantage of friends!
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Nov 23, 2005
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Back problem? After painting a condo? I've painted a 5 bedroom house with a friend and never had this back problem you speak of.
Member
Dec 28, 2007
321 posts
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Waterloo
I used to run a painting business. I would charge $600-800 for that depending on the condition of walls, if trim is being done, pre job work (can you move furniture with your back or do I?), and how much PITA is in the kitchen as most have alot of cutting and not alot of rolling, etc.

I also know prices will vary by region to account for differences in labour, given that its about $250 in materials, this could change it quite a bit.

The best way to find out if its a good price is to get 3 quotes and tell each guy you are getting three and will call them back after you compare. Also remember, "you get what you pay for" tends to apply when comparing painting companies.
Deal Addict
Aug 31, 2006
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No, OP said he has an existing bad back and for that reason he doesn't want to paint the condo himself since it would probably aggravate it (you do use your back muscles when you're using the roller with or without an extension pole attached).
boyoflondon wrote:
Jan 10th, 2010 9:59 am
Back problem? After painting a condo? I've painted a 5 bedroom house with a friend and never had this back problem you speak of.
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Oct 6, 2005
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leoben wrote:
Jan 9th, 2010 4:57 pm
would you say this is a reasonable price? i know that it costs a lot less when you DIY but i have no time and a back problem.
How many colours are you doing? Darker colours require more paint - sometimes 3 coats. You might also need bathroom, kitchen and ceiling paint, which all costs extra.

Labour is about 1 - 1.50 a square foot.
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May 10, 2005
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boyoflondon wrote:
Jan 10th, 2010 9:59 am
Back problem? After painting a condo? I've painted a 5 bedroom house with a friend and never had this back problem you speak of.
Bully for you! Comparing yourself with an anonymous person on a forum is a manly thing to do?

OP, I have painted my homes for years and a few years ago we hired a pro painter to do living and dining room. He fixed flaws, primed, painted and did so much a better job that will from now on weigh whether to do it myself or hire a pro. You do not know what brand, type or quality of paint the painter uses. The guy we hires insisted on Benjamin Moore, really expensive and I would not have used them, and it turned out well. The quality of tools makes a big difference in the job as well. You would most likely not spend $50 or more on a brush, let alone two or three of different sizes. Lastly, how much do think he charges per hour? At $35 per hour, the labour for an 8 hour job is already $280 plus taxes. And he may have to come for 2 days, letting the repairs cure and priming and then the next day finish coat. So, is $800 too much? Well, it might be right for a couple days work?
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mangoman wrote:
Jan 10th, 2010 11:26 am
No, OP said he has an existing bad back and for that reason he doesn't want to paint the condo himself since it would probably aggravate it (you do use your back muscles when you're using the roller with or without an extension pole attached).
My bad .... I initially responded from a BB and obviously didn't read what OP wrote well. :)


I have a friend who has been painting professionally for close to 10 years now. If he does a job on the side, he will charge equivalent to $25h and he mainly paints with Benjamin Moore, unless someone picks their own paint.
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Dec 11, 2005
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raxen wrote:
Jan 9th, 2010 5:05 pm

Depending on how many colours you want (for reference I have 3 colours), paint is around 50 dollars a gallon, which would cover 250-400 square feet for a single coat. You generally need two or more coats for nice finish.
Not going to comment too much on the rest, but $50 gallon is *very expensive* for paint. You're talking like top of the line Benjamin Moore fo rthat price. You can get very good paint for $25 / gallon. Any paint contractor pays more like $25 gallon for good quality paint since they get it at a discount.
To be nobody but yourself - in a world which is doing its best, night and day, to make you everybody else - means to fight the hardest battle which any human being can fight; and never stop fighting. -- E. E. Cummings
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brunes wrote:
Jan 10th, 2010 1:55 pm
Not going to comment too much on the rest, but $50 gallon is *very expensive* for paint. You're talking like top of the line Benjamin Moore fo rthat price. You can get very good paint for $25 / gallon. Any paint contractor pays more like $25 gallon for good quality paint since they get it at a discount.
Good point - hence the OP should get the exact model of paint being provided. For all he knows, the painter could be supplying crappy contractor grade paint :|
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boyoflondon wrote:
Jan 10th, 2010 12:29 pm
My bad .... I initially responded from a BB and obviously didn't read what OP wrote well. :)


I have a friend who has been painting professionally for close to 10 years now. If he does a job on the side, he will charge equivalent to $25h and he mainly paints with Benjamin Moore, unless someone picks their own paint.
$25 per hour and he supplies the Benjamin Moore paint. That is a smokin hot deal. :)
Where is he and how far will he travel?
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