How much does it cost to paint the exterior of a house?

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Exterior Painting Cost Guide

Updated: Jul 29, 2021

Reviewed by Karen Otto remodeling expert. Written by

A fresh coat of paint can give your home a completely new look without the complexity of a full-scale remodel. It can transform an exterior, highlight architectural details, or help brighten and freshen a tired-looking façade. It is possible to paint any siding material, from wood and vinyl to fiber cement, and doing so can help improve your home’s curb appeal and update its appearance. There are many cost factors that go into determining the total cost of your painting project, including the home size, siding and trim amount, architectural style, material your home is clad in, and paint type. With the rising cost of materials and inflation, many paint suppliers have increased costs or plan to increase prices in 2023 by 12% to 30% for paint, impacting project costs, although most painters have not yet increased their labor costs.

The average cost to paint the outdoor of a house ranges from $3,750 to $9,750, with most homeowners spending {{AVERAGE_COST}} to paint the exterior of a home with 2,500 sq.ft. of wood siding, along with trim and prep-work. This project’s low cost is {{LOW_COST}} for repainting a smaller home of 1,500 sq.ft with minor prepwork. The high cost is {{HIGH_COST}} for repainting a 2,500 sq.ft. more intricately trimmed home.

House Exterior Painting Cost

Average Cost to Paint a House Exterior
National average cost{{AVERAGE_COST}}
Average range$3,750-$9,750

Exterior Painting Cost Estimator

Exterior House Painting Cost per Square Foot

It’s important to note that when you calculate the square footage of your home, the amount of exterior siding you have to paint does not necessarily equal your interior square footage. Each wall of siding should be calculated separately, multiplying the height and width to find the square footage of that wall, and adding the walls together to get your total. Gables, dormers, and other features should be added into the total separately. Keep in mind that the exterior painting price per square foot can also change depending on the material of the siding you are painting and the complexity of the job. An average range for outdoor house painting costs per square foot is between $1.50 and $4 and can be higher or lower depending on your location and the condition of your home.

Cost to paint an 800, 1,000, 1,200, 1,500, 1,600, 2,000, and 2,500 sq.ft. house exterior (mobile)

800 sq.ft.$1,200 - $3,000
1,000 sq.ft.$1,500 - $4,000
1,200 sq.ft.$1,800 - $4,800
1,500 sq.ft.$2,250 - $6,000
1,600 sq.ft.$2,400 - $6,400
2,000 sq.ft.$3,000 - $8,000
2,500 sq.ft.$3,750 - $10,000

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Average Cost to Paint a House Exterior by Number of Stories

It makes sense that it is more expensive to paint a two or three-story house versus a single-story house. Climbing a ladder, repositioning the ladder, and refilling the sprayer or tray adds several hours and increases the risk of a fall or spill. A home with a lower-pitched roofline is easier to paint than one with a tall roofline. This is true of homes regardless of the number of stories, meaning you can have a wide range of costs. Homes with partial second stories, towers, turrets, vaulted ceilings, and other things that impact your home’s height and roofline, regardless of the number of stories, affect the total cost.

Cost to paint the exterior of a one, two, and three-story house (mobile)

Number of StoriesAverage Cost
One Story$1,000 - $5,800
Two Stories$4,500 - $10,000
Three Stories$7,000 - $13,000

Cost to Paint a House Exterior by Project

While many homeowners think primarily about siding when considering exterior painting, this project often includes many other aspects. Painting the exterior of a house involves painting many elements outdoors to create an aesthetically pleasing appearance for the entire outside. While not all areas require painting, most are painted at the same time for an ideal appearance. The following table highlights elements you can paint outdoors and the associated costs of each project.

Cost to paint a house exterior by project: downspouts, gutters, trim, eaves, siding, porch, shutters... (mobile)

ProjectAverage Cost
Downspouts$1 - $4/linear foot
Gutters$1 - $4/linear foot
Trim$1 - $6/linear foot
Eaves$2- $6/linear foot
Siding$1 - $5/sq.ft.
Porch$2 - $3/sq.ft.
Shutters$45 - $85/each
Exterior Door$150 - $350/each
Deck$550 - $850/each
Detached Garage$1,500 - $3,000/each

Paint Downspouts

Your downspouts are made of the same material as your gutters and have the same cost to paint, between $1 and $4 per linear foot, depending on the material. Because downspouts come in many lengths, costs vary. The downspout, located at the end of the gutter, transports water from the gutter to the ground. These handy pieces keep rain from pooling in areas that could cause problems down the line.

Paint Gutters

Gutters are integral to many homes, installed at the roofline to direct water from the foundation. They come in many materials, and while most are designed to be low-maintenance, you can have them painted to match your house or trim if desired. This pricing includes the average labor cost only, excluding the paint.

Labor Cost per Linear Foot to Paint Aluminum, Steel, Copper, Wood, and Vinyl/PVC Gutters (mobile)

Gutter MaterialCost per Linear Foot (Labor Only)
Aluminum$1 - $1.50
Steel$1 - $1.50
Copper$2 - $3
Wood$2 - $3
Vinyl/PVC$3 - $4

Paint Exterior Trim

The cost to paint trim is between $1 and $6 per linear foot. Many homes also have trim around the doors, at the end of siding runs, and sometimes between different styles or colors of siding. You may have decorative trim on some parts. The more decorative the trim, the more costly it is to paint. If you have a home that sees color changes on the trim, such as a Victorian or Queen Anne, your costs per linear foot are higher than for a home like a ranch with simple trim painted in one color. Window trim also impacts costs. The average home has 9 windows, with around 40 linear feet of trim, but some homes can have as many as 20 or 30 windows, creating more trim to paint. It is common to paint the trim on your home with your siding. Window trim, which frames out the windows on your home, can be painted with the rest of the trim or separately.

Paint Eaves

Eaves should also be treated like trim, with an average cost to paint of $2 to $6 per linear foot. Your eaves are covered by the fascia board, where the gutters attach below your roofline. The soffit is beneath your eaves and projects them. Having exposed eaves not covered by a soffit is uncommon but can be found. Fascia and soffit are considered part of your home’s trim and are usually color-matched, but they may be painted a different color to help the eaves stand out. Painting the eaves can be awkward because the roof’s underside juts out from the house. Some painters may use a sprayer or roller rather than a brush for this area.

Paint Siding

One of the biggest factors determining the cost of painting siding is the siding material. Different materials require more costly preparation, more labor to complete, or more expensive paints. Aluminum is growing in popularity but may require painting due to fading. It has a smooth, non-porous surface, requiring less paint but special types of paint and primer. Steel siding is similar to aluminum siding but more durable. It is designed not to require painting but can be painted if desired. Wood is also a popular siding option because it is easy and cost-effective to paint, as is engineered wood, which often comes pre-primed to make the initial painting faster. Concrete is more rare but chosen by some homeowners due to its durability. It requires more labor to paint than other sidings and so do brick siding and stone veneer, which may have higher costs.

Fiber cement siding often comes pre-painted or pre-primed, and most have paint that lasts more than 10 years before it needs retouching. The surface is not porous, allowing this siding to be painted using less paint. Vinyl siding is one of the most common siding options in many areas because it often does not require painting. However, you can change the viny’s color if you use the appropriate paints to prevent peeling. Below are the average costs to paint siding per square foot, based on the material.

Cost per sq.ft. to paint siding by material: vinyl, engineered wood, wood, metal/aluminum, steel, fiber cement... (mobile)

Siding MaterialCost per Sq.Ft.
Engineered Wood$1 - $2
Wood$1 - $3
Metal/Aluminum$1 - $5
Steel$1 - $5
Fiber Cement$1.25 - $3.25
Vinyl$1.50 - $4
Concrete$1.50 - $4
Stucco$1.50 - $4
Stone$2.40 - $5
Brick$2.50 - $5

Paint a Porch

With the right color, an ordinary porch can be transformed into a welcoming and inviting greeting area. Porches have a square foot painting cost of between $2 and $3 per sq.ft., so the larger the porch the higher the overall cost to paint. Your costs could also be higher if you have a lot of decorative trim on your porch or railings. The cost to paint a more detailed porch railing could add $1 to $2 more per sq.ft. Porches are usually painted at the same time as the rest of your exterior, and they frequently are painted to match the trim on the rest of the home.

Paint Shutters

Shutters cost $45 to $85 to paint. They generally should also be painted with the house or trim to keep them looking their best, or they can be painted separately. It is often easier for the painter to remove the shutters, apply the paint, and reattach due to the proximity of the house paint, which is a different color. Shutters may match the trim color, door color, or be a separate color altogether, depending on the home style.

Paint an Exterior Door

The average cost to paint an exterior door is around $150 to $350 per door. It’s common to have your doors painted at the same time as the rest of your exterior, particularly when going for a completely new color scheme. Interestingly enough, many homeowners opt to have the exterior door a completely different but complementary color to the exterior paint and trim. For example, a white house with black trim might have a brightly colored Robin Egg Blue front door!

Stain a Deck

The cost to have a deck painted or stained is between $550 and $850, depending on the deck size. If you have a deck on your home, you will likely need to paint or stain it regularly. Before staining or painting, the deck needs to be cleaned and possibly stripped, depending on the product used initially. After the deck is finished, a waterproofing product needs to be applied. Decks can be made of several materials, so the ultimate cost to paint the deck depends on its condition and material. If the deck needs repairs before it can be painted, the costs can be higher than if it is in good condition and you only want to refresh its color.

Paint a Garage Exterior

The average cost to paint a detached 2-car garage is $1,500 to $3,000. If your garage is attached to the house, it is included in the total cost to paint the siding. Garages are usually clad in the same materials as the home. This is true even of detached garages because it can make the property more cohesive and unified. For this reason, detached garages are generally painted in the same color as the home. When painting your home, consider painting the garage with it to help the buildings match.

Labor Cost to Paint House Exterior

While some people think painting a home is easy, it is a time-consuming job that is best done by a professional. A professional painter tapes and protects specified areas, cleans the exterior and preps before painting, and knows the correct paint type and amount for the job. They also know when to use primer and how many coats of paint may be necessary for a particular siding.

Most painters charge for their services per painter by the hour. The average rate is $25 to $100 per hour and painter. If you have two painters, expect to pay $50 to $200 per hour, while three painters cost $75 to $300 per hour. The more painters you have, the faster they can get the work done, reducing the total hours on the job. The labor varies for homes depending on many factors, including the siding’s condition, paint type, number of coats, and whether this is existing or new siding. New siding may need to be primed first, but some may come pre-primed, cutting costs. Existing siding needs to be inspected, pressure washed, and have loose paint removed. It may also need minor repairs, which can add to the time. For priming and painting the complete exterior of a 1,500 sq.ft. home, including the siding and trim, the total hours needed is 16 to 32 for a two-person team. This makes the labor portion $1,600 to $3,200 of the $2,250 to $6,000 total. If there is no need for priming, labor costs can be cut by half. Costs fall into similar ranges for painting an existing home because some homes may only need pressure washing and new paint, while others may require repairs, priming, and more than one coat of new paint, dramatically increasing costs.

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Exterior Paint Cost by Type

Several paint types are used for exterior painting projects, including latex, acrylic latex, and oil. Your painter may prefer working with one over another, or the siding type you have may require a particular paint type. Most painters use water-based latex paint because this is the easiest to clean and environmentally friendly. It also lasts longer than oil paint and is less likely to crack or yellow. Oil paint is falling out of favor, as it is no longer legal in many areas. It has been banned in several Mid-Atlantic states since 2005, and states like California have partial bans or bans in certain counties. Other states have restrictions on its use, so always check before using it. Because it tends to crack and takes longer to dry, many people choose not to use it, preferring water-based latex. Acrylic paints are used most commonly on vinyl, which requires acrylic paint and an adhesive primer to look its best and not peel. For most other surfaces, water-based latex is the most recommended material. There are different prices to consider in addition to the region you live in and which paint holds best in your environment. Below are the average costs per gallon for the different paint types. Different brands, finishes, and features, such as mildew resistance, impact the paint’s final cost.

Cost per gallon of acrylic latex, latex, and oil exterior painting (mobile)

Type of PaintCost per Gallon (Materials Only)
Acrylic Latex$30 - $80
Latex$30 - $80
Oil$36 - $100

Exterior Primer Paint Price by Type

Most surfaces that are being painted for the first time or that are making a significant color change need to be primed before they can be painted. Primer helps the paint adhere better to the surface, so it will last longer and it does not soak into the surface, not requiring extra coats. In some cases, primer can also help prevent discoloration of the paint, such as is the case when painting cedar; cedar sap can bleed through paint in a condition known as cedar bleed. Priming blocks this sap discoloration so the paint job stays looking fresh longer. If you are making a significant color change, from light to dark or dark to light, primer can help bridge the gap more easily, cutting down on the number of finished coats of paint.

Priming is also necessary if you are switching paint types, such as going from a latex paint to an oil-based paint. In most cases, you should use the same type of primer as the type of paint that you are using. For example, if you are using an oil-based paint, then an oil-based primer is needed.

Cost per gallon of latex, oil, shellac, and adhesive exterior primer (mobile)

Type of PrimerCost per Gallon (Materials Only)
Latex$15 - $60
Oil$25 - $70
Shellac$30 - $80
Adhesive$30 - $85

Exterior Paint Cost per Gallon

Many factors influence the cost of paint, including the color, brand, and location. The amount of paint or number of gallons your home needs for coverage can be influenced by several things, such as the siding’s condition, project size, and material. As a general rule, non-porous materials require less paint than porous materials, and materials in good condition require less paint than damaged materials. Because different paint types have varying costs, you can have a wide range of project costs. For example, flat paints cost less than glossy, and latex costs less than oil. Lower VOC paints and paints with features like faster drying or smoother coverage may cost more. Typical costs per gallon range from $15 to $115, depending on the brand and type. Below are the average costs for the paint needed to cover varying amounts of siding and the number of gallons needed.

Number of gallons of paint and average cost of paint for an 800, 1,000, 1,200, 1,500, 2,000, and 2,500 sq.ft. siding (mobile)

Amount of SidingGallons of PaintCost of Paint (Materials Only)
800 sq.ft.4$60 - $460
1,000 sq.ft.6$90 - $690
1,200 sq.ft.8$120 - $920
1,500 sq.ft.10$150 - $1,150
2,000 sq.ft.12$180 - $1,380
2,500 sq.ft.15$225 - $1,725

Exterior Paint Cost by Type of Finish

Paint has different finishes, ranging from extremely flat or matte to high-gloss finishes. Not every finish works on every exterior. The most commonly used finish on exterior homes is eggshell, which has a light sheen rather than completely flat or high gloss. Glossy paints last longer, while flatter paints last less but cover better. Flat paints absorb almost all light and have no sheen or reflection. They are harder to clean and more likely to show imperfections but spread easier and cover larger areas. Eggshell has a light sheen, so it is easier to clean and more likely to hide imperfections than flat paint, while satin has a slightly higher sheen. Semi-gloss is more likely to be used on trim because it reflects more light, draws attention, and is more likely to hide imperfections in the siding or trim. Glossy paints are almost exclusively used on trims, doors, shutters, and other accent areas. They reflect the most light and are the easiest to clean, but they can also be more difficult to work with. Each paint type has a range of costs based on other features, such as VOCs, material, brand, and durability. Below are the average costs per gallon of paint, depending on the finish.

Cost per gallon of flat, eggshell, high-gloss, satin, and semi-gloss exterior paint (mobile)

Type of FinishCost per Gallon of Paint (Materials Only)
Flat$15 - $100
Eggshell$20 - $105
High-Gloss$25 - $100
Satin$25 - $115
Semi-Gloss$25 - $115

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Exterior Paint Cost by Brand

When it comes to painting your exterior, you may not put too much thought into the brand of paint. However, different brands offer different things for paint. Some focus on environmentally friendly paints with lower VOCs. Others offer greater durability and long-lasting colors. Each brand also has a set of costs. Some brands like Glidden or Valspar are known for affordability, and some are considered higher-end paints with a higher price tag but may be more easily applied or offer superior coverage in one coat. Some also offer features like mildew and mold resistance, making them a good choice for exteriors. Below are the most common brands of paint for exterior use and their costs per gallon for the different finishes they offer.

Cost per gallon and type of Valspar, Glidden, PPG, Behr, Benjamin Moore, and Sherwin-Williams exterior paint (mobile)

Valspar Exterior Paint

Valspar is a Lowe’s-exclusive paint and offers most exterior finishes ranging from $15 to $100 per gallon. All their paints are easy to apply with a roller because it is much thinner. However, that means you may need to apply more than one coat to protect your home properly. Valspar paints resist mildew due to their high-quality fillers, but it does not resist dirt with the same success. Valspar dries quickly because the paint is thin. This can be good, but it also can cause streaks.

Type of PaintCost per Gallon (Materials Only)
Flat$15 - $55
Eggshell$21 - $60
Satin$25 - $70
Semi-Gloss$25 - $80
High-Gloss$25 - $100

Glidden Exterior Paint

Glidden is a less expensive paint alternative that can be found at most Walmart stores across the country. Their paints range in price from $18 and $55 per gallon. Despite its lower price point and less recognizable name, Glidden is still known for offering high-quality paints appreciated by homeowners and painting contractors alike. Most of their paints are mildew-resistant, which makes them a great choice for exterior applications.

Type of PaintCost per Gallon (Materials Only)
Flat$18 - $40
Eggshell$20 - $50
Satin$26 - $55
Semi-Gloss$26 - $55
High-Gloss$30 - $55

PPG Exterior Paint

PPG exterior paints range from $20 to $100 per gallon, depending on the finish. The brand has over 135 years of experience and is a global supplier of premium exterior paints. PPG paints are useful for painting older homes because they easily cover blemishes and imperfections, depending on the finish. They offer various colors, metallics, and wood stain colors.

Type of PaintCost per Gallon (Materials Only)
Flat$20 - $60
Eggshell$22 - $100
Satin$25 - $100
Semi-Gloss$25 - $100
High-Gloss$30 - $70

Behr Exterior Paint

Behr has been Home Depot’s house paint brand since 1978 and offers a range of paints for interior and exterior applications. Their pricing ranges from basic to premium paints, falling between $30 and $60 per gallon. Behr paints are durable and do not crack or fade easily. It can be applied easily with a paint sprayer and provides excellent coverage, but it can be tricky to apply with a paint roller. It is also suggested to use at least two coats on your exterior.

Type of PaintCost per Gallon (Materials Only)
Flat$30 - $40
Eggshell$30 - $60
Satin$40 - $60
Semi-Gloss$40 - $60
High-Gloss$50 - $60

Benjamin Moore Exterior Paint

Benjamin Moore paints offer high quality at a mid-range price, ranging from $41 to $100 per gallon. Every store across the country is locally owned, so if you are looking for a trustworthy and family-centric brand, Benjamin Moore is right for you. They offer higher-end options and some affordable paints with good quality. When you choose Benjamin Moore paints, you can select your choice of color and finish from many options.

Type of PaintCost per Gallon (Materials Only)
Flat$41 - $65
Eggshell$45 - $80
Satin$45 - $80
Semi-Gloss$45 - $80
High-Gloss$45 - $100

Sherwin-Williams Exterior Paint

Sherwin-Williams is one of the top paint brands on the market, meaning their paints are priced higher, ranging from $42 to $115 per gallon, depending on the finish. However, they still offer many affordable options. Their exterior paints cost more than interior paint because they are made with special properties to withstand the outside elements without chipping, fading, or discoloration. Sherwin-Williams has stores across the nation and offers a range of products, including basic and self-priming exterior paints. Their paint is thinner and dries much quicker. However, you may need to apply multiple coats, impacting your project’s cost.

Type of PaintCost per Gallon (Materials Only)
Flat$42 - $100
Eggshell$46 - $105
Satin$50 - $115
Semi-Gloss$70 - $115
High-Gloss$80 - $90

House Exterior Painting Cost Factors

There are many types and styles of home and architecture and different types of siding and paint. The exact amount you pay to paint your home is influenced by many factors, including the wall heights, number of gables and dormers, siding type and material, siding condition, number of windows and doors, paint type, and number of coats.

Some siding types like brick need less paint, while poorly kept wood siding may require more paint. So, homes of the same shape and size could have different costs. Making a dramatic color change could require additional primer or paint to make the change, resulting in more labor and additional material costs.

The square footage of your home impacts your project’s cost, but so can the building’s height. Painting a home with only a ground level is much easier to paint than one with two or three floors. This is because your painting contractors must maneuver taller ladders or scaffolds, meaning the project takes longer. Plus, the higher you go, the more things can potentially get in the way like tree branches and power lines. Also, consider how much of the ground must be blocked to protect passersby from falling objects. Prices generally rise by $0.10 to $0.25 per foot once you exceed ten feet. While a ground-level 2,500 sq.ft. home costs $3,750 to $9,750, the same 2,500 sq.ft. with two stories costs $5,000 to $13,000.

The weather also impacts the overall cost of your exterior painting project. High winds, rain, or snow make conditions nearly impossible for painting. Even if your painting contractors can paint in inclement weather, it does not mean they should. Extra moisture can cause the paint to streak when drying, ruining your exterior appearance. The best time to paint is on a temperate day with low winds and intermittent sun.

Cost to Repaint a House Exterior

When repainting a home that has been painted before, your costs can range depending on the siding condition. It should be pressure washed first to remove loose paint. If necessary, repairs may also need to be made to the existing siding or surface material, and older caulk may need to be replaced around windows and doors. Depending on the siding’s condition and if you make a significant color change, you may also need to prime this siding before painting. This can mean repainting results in higher costs, but this comes down to the siding’s quality.

Repainting siding may have lower costs than painting new siding that requires a primer but may have higher costs than painting pre-primed new siding. Expect costs to range from $3,750 to $9,750 for most homes, including painting all siding and trim after pressure washing and making necessary repairs. Costs vary depending on your location, climate, and the siding condition and type, whether new or existing.

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New Construction House Exterior Painting

If a house is being painted for the first time, it can have a range of costs depending on several factors. Some materials like fiber cement and engineered wood may come pre-primed and ready for painting. This can cut labor costs in half, with total costs averaging $1,400 to $4,200 for a 1,500 sq.ft. home. However, if you need to prime the home first, your costs average $2,250 to $5,800 for a 1,500 sq.ft. home. It is very common for builders to use materials that are pre-primed and ready for painting or already painted or otherwise finished when building a new home. This cuts the costs of the new construction and the total labor and time needed to finish the exterior. However, if you want a custom color or choose a material that is not available pre-finished, it requires painting before move-in.

House painter painting the exterior of a house with a roller

Home Exterior Paint Prep

Before homes can be painted, a lot of prep work needs to go into the project. In most cases, much of this prep work is factored into the hourly rate for the painters. This includes pressure washing, removing loose paint, taping windows, doors, and light fixtures, sanding, removing old caulk, patching small holes, priming, and priming stains.

Most painters charge by the hour, and the more work there is, the higher the overall costs. However, if your home needs more extensive work, such as making significant repairs to the siding or stucco, or if delicate trim must be worked around, you could have higher costs. So, while the above prep work is usually included in the hourly cost per painter, expect costs to climb per hour per painter for work like repairing or patching holes, repairing or replacing trim, and installing new caulk or putty around windows and doors.

What Color Should I Paint My House Exterior?

Every home is unique, meaning every home’s color and appearance varies. Choosing the right color for your exterior depends on more than your personal preferences. Exterior colors may be influenced by the architecture of your home and region, with some areas like the South preferring darker colors and New England preferring tones of white and gray. It is also important to consider your neighborhood because you ideally do not want your home to stand out. If the bulk of the homes in the neighborhood are neutral, a neutral color is likely your best choice. However, if most of the homes have more saturated shades, you may want to consider this. The architecture plays a role, with homes like Victorians using “somber” colors that have black mixed with multiple color changes and Craftsmans using nature-inspired colors.

If the sale of your home is on the horizon, consider which colors attract potential buyers. Repainting a home’s exterior is an expense most new homeowners do not want. Whites, natural woods, and tan colors are the best way to go, with white topping the list of exterior paint colors that attract buyers. These colors provide the exterior of your home with a fresh, clean, and updated look, no matter its age, making it more attractive to potential buyers.

Painter painting the trim and shutters of a home

How Often Should You Paint Your House Exterior?

Many factors impact how often you should paint your home’s exterior. It depends on the type of siding that you have, the climate that you live in, and the quality of the paint. The average homeowner will have anywhere from five to ten years between paint jobs, but unique surfaces require different time between paint jobs.

Wood siding should be repainted every three to seven years, while aluminum and stucco can last between five and six. On the other hand, newer materials like cement fiberboard can go between ten and fifteen years without a paint job. Brick can last twenty years.

As a general rule of thumb, you should always repaint before noticing visible signs of wear and tear. Otherwise, you will have to spend a lot more on preparing your exterior and fixing damages before the painting can even begin.

Spray vs Roller Exterior Paint

Many professional painters use paint sprayers to quickly and efficiently over the exterior of the home. While these sprayers have higher upfront costs for the painter, they cut down significantly on the amount of labor that they need to perform to evenly coat your home with paint.

While for some areas, such as trim, the paint should still be applied manually, to cover large areas in a relatively short amount of time, the sprayer will save time and therefore money for you and the pro. A job that may take 4-6 days with rollers could be accomplished in 2-3 days with a sprayer. Because painters charge by the hour, this can be a significant saving for large jobs. For small, detailed jobs, however, a roller will often do the best work. This does vary by painter, as some prefer to use brushes and rollers, especially in high wind areas, and some prefer to use the sprayer. In general, rolling will cost between $40 and $60 per hour and painter, while spraying can cost $30 to $50 per hour and painter.

ApplicationCost per Hour
Spray$30 - $50
Roller$40 - $60

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Enhancement and Improvement Costs

Mold Remediation

You may find mold when you paint your exterior. You may need to hire a mold remediation team to take care of it. Mold remediation costs $1,500 to $9,000, depending on how large the issue is. If you live in an area where mold is common or that sees heavy moisture, you may want to use a paint with mold or mildew resistance because this prevents mold from returning.

Repair Siding

Your siding may be in such poor condition that some of it needs to be repaired before painting. In this case, expect costs of $100 to $1,700. Wood and vinyl siding are especially susceptible to foundational movements and harsh weather conditions. That is why it is so important to inspect your exterior before you paint. A professional can fix loose siding by nailing it back into place and securing everything.

Window Caulking

Exterior caulk around windows must be replaced if it begins to crack or fail. This costs $75 to $150. Caulk seals cracks or gaps in surfaces efficiently, extends the life of your exterior paint, and keeps your interior comfortable. It prevents leaks and pests from making their way into your home via exterior windows. Caulk should be inspected yearly to catch cracks or gaps before they impact your energy efficiency. It can be a good idea to update the caulk when you paint if it is getting old.

Lead Paint Removal

If your home was built before 1978, it may have lead paint still on the siding. If you believe this to be the case, you may need to pay for testing and removal to safely paint the home. This costs $10,000 to $30,000. While most homes have had their lead paint removed by this point, many others may have had the paint “encapsulated” or surrounded by a thicker paint material. This may fail and must be removed with the lead paint. If you suspect this is the case, do not attempt to disturb the paint, but have it tested to be sure.

Additional Considerations and Costs

  • Permits. Painting the exterior of your home does not require a permit. However, if you are replacing some of your siding before painting, you may require a permit, depending on the job scope. Permit costs for this start at $300 to $800. If you have a permit pulled, you need to have the job inspected. If this is done, you may have additional fees of $100 to $200, depending on local rules.
  • DIY. While not recommended, it is possible to paint your home yourself. Make sure the siding is clean and scrape off any old, loose paint. Use a primer meant for the material, and always use the best quality paint you can afford.
  • Time of the year. Most types of exterior paint require an ambient temperature of around 50 degrees in order to cure properly. For this reason, the best times to have your home painted are usually in the spring and fall, but hot climates may do best in the winter.
  • Compare estimates. Make sure you confirm all details of the job in writing before the work begins. Always get at least three estimates before hiring your painter in order to compare prices and scope of work. If you are doubting between a couple of contractors, asking for references may be useful, as well as taking a look at some of their previous projects. Driving by homes they have painted or asking for pictures may also be a good idea.
  • Check city ordinances. Make sure to check your local city ordinances when deciding to paint. You may not be able to paint your house in a specific color, especially in historic districts.
  • Color consultation. If you are unsure of the color that you want your house to be painted, you can get a color consultation from a professional. This would be a great financial investment because you can make sure the color choice is right first time, avoiding having to have your house repainted.
  • Maintenance. You can help keep your exterior looking its best between paint jobs by performing some basic cleaning and maintenance as needed. This includes inspecting your exterior yearly for signs of damage, wood rot, insect activity, or mold. Addressing these issues quickly can help prevent them from getting worse. You can clean and remove dirt, debris, and moss from your siding using a pressure washer as needed.
  • Travel fees. Depending on where you live and how far your home is from their location, your painter may charge you a travel fee. This can be up to $50 in some instances, depending on time and distance.


  • How long does it take to paint the exterior of a house?

This depends on the size and layout of the home and the number of painters on the job. On average, it can take three to four days to paint the average 2,500 square foot home with a team of two or three painters.

  • What kind of paint do you use to paint outside of a house?

You can use oil, latex, or acrylic latex paint that is made for exterior use. Paints made with 100% acrylic resins will be your best bet for exterior paint jobs because they are the most flexible, breathable, and durable.

  • How many coats of paint does the exterior of a house need?

This will depend on whether you are using a primer, what the existing color is, and what the final color will be. It can also vary by the condition of the siding. One to three coats may be needed.

  • Is it better to roll or spray exterior paint?

Many professionals spray because it is faster and easier, providing better coverage. However, some paint brands are better applied with a roller.

  • What is the best finish for exterior house paint?

The most popular finish for exterior house paint is eggshell. This is because it isn’t too dull like a flat or matte finish but also not too shiny like a high-gloss finish. Eggshell paint is easy to wash and can hold its own against seasonal weather changes. It is also easy to apply and won’t show streaks once dry.

  • How much does it cost to paint a mobile home exterior?

The cost to paint a mobile home exterior averages about $2,750 to $4,000, depending on the size of the house. You’ll most likely want to use either oil-based or latex-based paints that are made specifically for exterior applications. You may also need to use a primer beforehand to get the paint to stick.

  • How do you calculate exterior paint?

Several factors calculate exterior paint. Ideally, you need the square footage of the exterior - the height and width of each side of the home multiplied together and added for the total. You also need to determine your paint finish, material, and your siding’s condition. Poor siding needs more paint than siding in good condition. Check to see the coverage on the paint type, add 25% for poor siding, and you can find the number of gallons needed to cover your square footage.

  • What paint holds up best outside?

Any paint designed for exterior use holds up well. Use water-based latex paint if you paint on wood or acrylic-based paint or fiber cement if you paint on vinyl because these do not yellow or crack.