How much will it cost to paint the interior of my home in 2019?

Sometimes designing your best life truly calls for a paint brush, home décor, and a vision!

I’ve had my heart set on trendy light gray walls and bright white trim since we moved into our builder’s-special greige home in 2016. We budgeted and saved enough to hire a local designer and the first thing I requested was a whole house paint refresh!

I’ve never had anything professionally painted, so I underestimated the cost quite a bit! I also didn’t realize how much work goes into painting a home. I Googled my hopeful heart out trying to estimate the cost but came up empty. Here is some current information on collecting and receiving bids, and our progress so far.

Project Details:

It’s helpful to know how our home stacks up to yours if you’re trying to estimate what your cost might be.

  • Home size: 1,600 square foot – 3 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms
  • Colors requested: 5 – Flat white ceilings, semi-gloss white trim and cabinets, two eggshell wall colors for all rooms, and satin interior doors
  • Scope – All ceilings, walls, baseboards, crown molding (living room, master bedroom, master bathroom), fireplace, window sills, interior doors and frames, and the cabinets.

Scheduling Bids

You want to get at least 3 bids when having work done in your home. This helps ensure you receive a fair price and the right individual or team to do the work. We ended up requesting 5 bids because the first 3 were so far out of my price range that I was getting discouraged.

I scheduled all bids to be done in a single week. Bids took anywhere from 20-90 minutes depending on their level of detail and how chatty the specialist was. You walk them through your home and describe your project. They take their measurements and ask questions along the way. Most companies provided a printed or emailed bid before leaving. One company went back to their office to finalize before sending it a couple days later.

Painting tip: Some companies offered free color consultation if you selected them. So, if you lack home design skills (like me), this may be a great option!

How much did it cost?

The short answer: $5,150-$10,270

The bids came in at:

  • $9,667 ($6,979 house and $2,688 cabinets)
  • $10,270 ($8,050 house and $2,220 cabinets)
  • $8,794 ($6,808 house and $1,986 cabinets)
  • $5,150 ($3,950 house and $1,200 cabinets)
  • $0 (They didn’t show up or call, easy decision!)

Some bids provided detailed estimates by room. The ranges were so varied! Of the 3 higher quotes for example, our master bedroom and bath would cost between $986-$2,188 to paint. I was unclear why the significant variance, but honestly, we weren’t prepared to go with either company, so I didn’t ask.

Our Decision

In making your decision, you’ll need to consider:

  • Cost
  • Estimated start date and completion time
  • References

There’s usually a scale with any service. The more expensive route usually is very quick, efficient, and they can charge more because they do high quality work. The lower cost options may have smaller teams, more flexible hours, take longer, and be difficult to track down references to verify quality.

We decided on the lowest cost option, $5,150. Based on our budget, this is the only option I felt comfortable with financially. A colleague of mine used them to also paint the walls of her home and she said she was very pleased.

I recommend asking around for recommendations on any service. Friends, family, co-workers, neighborhood or local area Facebook page, church, etc.

Project Update

We are 6 business days into the project. The ceilings and trim work are complete, and walls were started yesterday. The lines between the ceilings and the walls don’t seem to be “HGTV” perfect but I’ll hold out hope that their final step is to touch everything up. My husband thinks we may have sacrificed a little on quality because we focused so much on the budget, which is a trade off we knew was possible.

The original timeline they gave us was 2-2.5 weeks and we’re on schedule. It’s two brothers who also happen to be from Wisconsin (small world!) who are completing the work. They’ve been doing this for nearly 20-years and are very kind and professional. They seem to work from about 9am straight through to 3-4pm. Not a bad schedule if you ask me!

We’ve paid $1,500 for the first week of work and materials. This has me hopeful that it may even come in under budget after all is said and done!


Please let me know if you have any questions below and I’ll answer them ASAP. I had the hardest time finding information about this beforehand and wish I had been more prepared.

This will absolutely be part of a design series when all is said and done. I’ve learned so much through the process and found so little online to give me guidance, so I’ll put it all here.

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