First of all I said, "...maybe $100" -- could be a little less, could be a
little more. Second, that was before the OP gave us any details -- what
constitutes a "small" bedroom varies from one person to the next and we also
didn't know how many closets, windows, woodwork, repair, and so forth or
where he's located. If we assume some basic repair, one coat of primer, 2
coats of paint on a 12'x12' room with a good paint, different colors for
ceiling and walls, maybe some trimwork, rollers/brushes/trays, drop cloth,
painter's tape...that will range anywhere from $75-$125.
Now, if you already had all of your supplies/equipment and bought cheap
paint or remnant paint then you could drop that down to under 50 bucks I
suppose, but $100 is a reasonable amount to expect to spend when painting a
In response to some of the questions and the flamer:
We paid $650. The room is about 12'7" x 11'5", plus a decent sized
closet. There was nothing fancy. He went AROUND the window
frames....as I would expect.
I never said he cheated us. I don't feel cheated. I do feel that we
paid more than I was prepared to pay...or more than the reasonable and
My wife said he used 3 coats. Not sure that's true, or if it was
necessary. I feel the painter ----who I only met briefly when he was
almost done--- was a very concientious type and worked in good faith
and did a good job. I just feel that he may have been at the very high
end of the bell-curve in terms of what he charged. Or that the type of
job was more than we needed...or something like that. What's done is
done and I will not be insulting the painter (or my wife) and asking
him for a reduced price or complaining.
I won't jump off a bridge if you tell me I overpaid, etc. I would just
like to know. You can't upset me, but on the other hand, if you tell
me that the price I paid is within reasonable and customary rates for
the type of work that was done, I'll feel better.
Oh.... The paint was provided by us. Most of it. He added a ceiling
paint can and yes, he painted the ceiling white with that. And we live
in the Chicago, Illinois Metropolitan Area.
Its been 14 years since we had any painting done, and it was $200 for
1 or 2 rooms then. I know about inflation, but still seemed high,
hence the post. It took him more than one day also....and he was over
estimate by about $100.
As for the flamer. I could come back at you with a bunch of swear
words, etc., for jumping to conclusions and being a donkey's behind
yourself. Oh, what the heck...I swear too WHEN ITS CALLED FOR ---YOU
ASSHOLE!!!! But you're not really worth the time.
So... to the others who replied...thank you for your time and your
candor. Maybe the info I have provided now will help someone give me
some positive feedback.
Either way... thanks for reading this.
It depends. Since he spent more than a day, figure 2 days @ $325.day. Since
he likely has to waste a day's work estimating and selling to get a day's
work, each day pays about $160./day. Since more than 1/3 of each paid $ goes
to taxes, insurance, etc., figure $100./ day. If he was skilled and you are
reasonably assured of a job that will last (unlike an amateur job that could
peel next year), consider yourself to have paid a fair price for a fair job.
Remember, anyone who is hired then has to worry about future lawsuits and
problem customers, so the price, overall, is reasonable.
Those overhead costs are not free. The alternative is do it yourself, save
the estimating and selling costs, sacrifice the skill and experience, risk
the paint peeling in a year, and buy without recourse if it turns out to be
a disaster job.
But if you don't want that, pay up.
Sounds like he did a good job. It may be a tad high, but if you figure $325
for a day, minus , truck, insurance, and other overhead he is making a good
living, but will not be in the top ten billionaires category.
For a room that size, with you providing the paint, $650 sounds a tad on the
high side to me. On the other hand, you live in the Chicago Metro area so
you're in a higher priced market. The fact that he went into two days is
also an important factor.
Offhand, I would expect to pay around $350-$450 for a room that size here if
it took 2 days of work. Up there I would figure it to go closer to
$500-$600. Figure $325 a day is roughly $40/hour -- that's not terribly
unreasonable. I'm curious why it took 2 days to complete the job though --
maybe it was the 3 coats, maybe the fill-in work, both.... Did he give a
specific reason? The 2nd day of labor is likely a major factor in the final
ticket and depending on the amount of fill-in work (repair work) that may be
In all honesty, anything anyone on this group might say is pure
conjecture -- without seeing the room and all it's difficult to get any
closer than a ballpark figure. To get a better idea, the easy solution is
to just call around to a few local painters in your area and ask them for a
rough estimate. Some will give it over the phone -- just tell them the size
of the room, the number and size of windows & closets, etc.. I typically do
this before planning a project that will involve contractors, just to get a
rough idea of where I'm looking in costs.
In the end, I wouldn't sweat it -- you had a professional job done, it looks
good and serves the purpose. Even at $650 you weren't rooked -- now if
there was another digit in that number, THEN I'd say you have a problem. :)
FWIW, just my .02. :)
It sounds a bit high to me, but three coats will drive up the cost.
Personally, I'd do it for $250. Professional painters around here get
$15 an hour. Did you ask for an estimate before the job? Better yet
get three estimates. Painting is very much a do-it-yourself job,
often a family project.
On 30 Aug 2003 20:20:07 -0700, email@example.com
On 30 Aug 2003 20:20:07 -0700, firstname.lastname@example.org
Can you now see why your first question was pretty much lame?! lol
IMHO...ya done good! You got a VERY good price...especially if yer
happy with the result.
You didn't have a room painted...as you said in your original post.
You had a room painted THREE TIMES!!! QUITE a difference! And he
even supplied some of the paint...and the other supplies, of
course...brushes, cleaning material, trimout supplies, etc.
And closets can be a bitch! The smaller they are...the TOUGHER they
I think ya done good. It sounds like yer kinda picky...and even YER
happy with the job. So I'd say he's an excellent contractor.
Good luck with the new room!
Have a nice Labor Day weekend...
Proud member of the Roy Rogers fan club!
If it was actually 3 coats and he also painted the ceiling, that doesn't
sound too unreasonable. My question is what color did he paint and what
color did he paint over? I would never use the homeowner's paint unless
absolutely necessary. Maybe it was cheap paint and actually required 3
coats. Personally, I use expensive paint that in most cases goes on nicely
in one coat, becaues it's less expensive that way.
I see no reason to be off on an estimate for a single room like that, but
again he used your paint, which he shouldn't have. If it took 3 coats, I
can see how it could have taken more than 8 hours if he did a good job.
$200 could be for one room with one coat and no ceiling.
Good point. Cheap paint is always very expensive in labor.
Maybe the homeowner insisted on the painter using their paint, and that
drove the cost of the labor involved in using cheap paint through the
I forgot to add that the painter DID move the furniture himself and
one reason we didn't do it ourselves was we have cats in the home and
its a small home and we were concerned about an accidental spillage of
paint or something while we would be doing the work. With a stanger in
the house, the cats all stay in hiding anyway.
Another reason for hiring a contractor was the clean-up.
And again...I never said the painter didn't earn his money and I'm not
comparing it to an amateur job by myself or anyone else. I just feel I
paid a lot more than necessary, and was hoping to get a very
unscientific idea of what some other people recently paid for one room
without a lot of fancy ornate trim, but with some minor repair work to
the walls (no major cracks though).
For a 12 x 11 foot room $650 is extremely high priced. You said he used three
coats. If he was using latex over latex and the new color was close to the same
color or shade he would only need one coat and two at the most for one thing.
Moving the furniture could add a little more but in one room I bet thta was
less an hour of work so it shouldn't have upped the price but maybe $50 at the
very most. I have worked with a lot of sub contractors including painters and I
have done quite a bit of painting myself. For three coats (if he even needed to
do that), plus furniture moving a fair price would be around $300 to $350 at
the most right now. Hon, make sure you shop around before you hire subs from
now on OK? write me and ask if you wish also. I have been in GC and Engineering
most of my life and I am 45 now. I do not mind Hon.
Thank you. You confirmed what I thought, but did so in a much nicer
way than some others. Time is money and being extremely short on time,
I decided that paying for the job would be less of a headache than
doing it myself. And I STILL believe that. However, I believed the job
would cost something between $300-400...not peanuts, but not a
lot---though its a lot of money for me anyway.
My wife chose this person because he did some other work for us and
she thought it was good, high quality work and I thought that was very
high too. Not because I'm a cheapskate, but because it seemed
I am not a penny-pincher, and do not believe in going with the
cheapest ...especially when its a small percentage of the price. I
wasn't trying to save $100 or $200 even. If I was charged $650 and an
average cost for a similar room was something in the neighborhood of
about $450-550, I would NOT be unhappy. I was merely trying to find
out average cost, no matter how much a guess it would be. Next time
I'll call friends and let them rake me over the coals in their own
manner, rather than put up with the brutality in this group.
I was merely concerned that I paid 2 or 3 times what it should have
cost. To me...it should have cost between $200-400. From that level,
$650 is quite a jump. Course the first estimate was around $550.
That's not that far from $400, so I didn't like it, but I let my wife
go with it since she had confidence in this person's work and that
was/is important to me. But!!!! $650 is a long way from $400 and an
even longer way from $200, and so I'm sitting here with a severe case
of buyer's remorse and with no recourse ----other than to not use this
contractor again if I think he's high.
He actually took 2 and 1/2 days to complete the job. Slow and
methodical and thorough? Or just slow? In the end, I paid 3 times what
my low estimate of the cost was and 50% more than my high estimate.
Admittedly my estimates were based on old data and not much experiece,
which is why I came here now...for the next time and for maybe some
re-assurance that I got more value than it feels like right now.
The thing is, if he is NOT too high, or there is good reason for his
high rate, then I would like to know that too. I don't know when we'll
need more work done, but at these rates, I will have to become a
slum-landlord to my own family...not fixing or upgrading anything
until its absolutely necessary.
Oh...by the way....I was merely disappointed in some of the more
brutal posts, but understand now that there are probably some painters
IN the group and they are probably concerned ---understandably so--
that quoting a lower price here would lower the price people woule
expect to pay to them for their work. Maybe a bit paranoid, maybe not.
But I understand that now. I THOUGHT I was talking to some
knowledgeable consumers only. I was not trying to influence the going
rate for paint jobs.
As for the flaming and my retaliatory remarks.... they were aimed only
at one person....Mark Ransley. Who now appears to have slinked away
after making an ASS out of himself, not the others in this group.
To everyone but him, whether your answers were supportive or not,
thank you for replying. And to Candice especially. Thank you for
saying much the same as the others, but in a much more
email@example.com (CLSSM00X7) wrote in message
$30 to $40 per hour is too much for a painter. I don't care how good they
are or the room to be painted. It ain't rocket science.
But when wifey makes the decision, the best thing to say is, "Nice choice,
You're right, it AIN'T rocket science, but still somehow you don't get it.
$30 an hour for a self employed contractor is COMPLETELY DIFFERENT than $30
an hour for someone working for a wage for someone else. It's apples and
oranges. $30 an hour for a good painter is CHEAP.
He moved furniture...plus drying time between coats...plus the closet
To the OP...
There's only one thing worse than an expensive, professional paint
job...and that's an inexpensive, amateur one! lol
Try THAT next time.
Your wife is a wise woman. There's more important things in life to
worry about than trying to cut a few slivers off a $600 bill!
Hope you had a nice Labor Day weekend...
Proud member of the Roy Rogers fan club!
Now it's 2 1/2 rather than 1 1/2 days :0[
That seems a bit extreme if nothing special was happening. Frankly, it
sounds like the guy was an employee killing time and doing as little work as
possible. If so, that would also explain the price, with all the overhead
involved in hiring/insuring/etc.
If I did a job like that I'd likely charge half as much, use my own paint,
and be done in less than a day. But, many, if not most, employees don't care
about productivity, only work avoidance.
Next time, hire a race horse. Get someone who works for themself and who is
ambitious. If I could make $250. (after paying $75. for materials) for part
of a day's work, especially in cash, I'd jump on it. But if I had to hire
workers, the $650. is where I'd have to come in because of all the lame
nonsense involved in being an employer.
HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here.
All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.