2020 Cost to Paint the Ceiling: Estimate Painting Price Per Square Foot

Average Costs For:
Most Homeowners Spent Between: Most People Spent: $2,875 - $3,646 (for 1600 sq. ft.)
Low End
$2,642
Average
$3,183
High End
$3,978

See costs in your area Start Here - Enter Your Zip Code


The average cost of painting a ceiling is $150-300 in a standard size 10×12 room.

If your ceiling has small cracks and other signs of aging, painting it is an inexpensive way to update the look and feel of the entire room.

Painting a ceiling is a lot more challenging and time consuming than painting walls. That’s why we recommend leaving this project to the pros.


Cost of Interior Painting
Low End
$2,138
Average
$2,709
High End
$3,197

See costs in your area Start Here - Enter Your Zip Code


Painting Cost Per Square Foot

Homeowners across US report spending about $150-350 to paint a ceiling in a single room. This is the equivalent of $1 -2 per square foot. This estimate does not include any repairs or painting around skylights.

The final cost depends of three factors:

1. Total square footage: you can save 10-15% on the total cost of the job, if you have more ceilings painted. Covering a larger area will allow you to save more per sq.ft.

2. Quality of paint used: typically ceiling paint costs about 10-15% more than regular paint. You can get good quality ceiling paint starting at about $27/gallon by brands, such as BEHR.

3. Ceiling height: most ceilings are 8 ft tall. However, if your ceilings are higher, you should add about 9-10% to the total cost for each additional foot of ceiling height.

Expect to pay at least a 50% premium for cathedral and vaulted ceilings as they are significantly more difficult and time consuming to paint.

If you have skylights, it will cost $100-150 to paint the trim of one skylight. If they are very high, it will cost 10-20% more.

Keep in mind that labor rates vary greatly from region to region. For example, in large cities where the standard of living is higher, contractors will charge 20-30% more than in less affluent areas.

This is why it is so important to get 3-4 price quotes from local contractors, so that you know what the rates are where you live.



Ceiling Repair

The most common repair that needs to be done on the ceiling is to patch the cracks. If these are just cosmetics you can expect to pay between $250-400, depending on the size and number of cracks.

However, if the contractor discovers water damage or mold under the peeling cracks, or a structural problem, the cost will go up significantly. Depending on what the problem is, you can expect to pay anywhere from $1,000 and up to fix the underlying issue.

Textured Popcorn Ceiling

textured ceiling design

If you are looking to add more visual interest to your room, this can be done by creating a textured ceiling.

Pros can use different techniques and materials, such as textured paint or drywall mud, to construct custom textures and designs on your ceiling. However, popcorn is the most popular and budget-friendly option that most homeowners choose.

Depending on what type of look you have in mind, you should expect to pay an extra $0.5-2.00 per sq.ft. of texture.

Keep in mind that textured ceilings can be harder to clean and they also absorb more light. Therefore, they are not recommended in smaller rooms that don’t get a lot of light.



Ceiling Paint vs Wall Paint

One factor that may impact your total cost is the quality of paint. Most ceiling paint comes in shades of white and is flat. Consequently, it may be tempting to save money and use regular wall paint that is white and flat on the ceiling. However, it is best NOT to do this and actually get paint that is specifically made for the ceiling.

This is because real ceiling paint has a different viscosity than regular paint. It is thicker and as a result it does not drip as much as regular paint, during the application process. As you can imagine, less drips from the top make the job go a lot faster and easier.

Additionally, this paint is formulated to better cover and protect against mold and stains, compared to regular paint. Consequently, this can be especially critical in poorly ventilated areas, such as the bathroom, where mold can become an issue.

Cost of Interior Painting
Low End
$2,138
Average
$2,709
High End
$3,197

See costs in your area Start Here - Enter Your Zip Code



About Yelena G

Yelena G. has been working in the remodeling and construction industry for over 15 years. Her focus is on construction planning and design as well as project cost estimating. Yelena also has a personal interest in interior design, as well as in unique DIY remodeling projects. Read more about Yelena

Leave a Reply