How much does it cost to paint exterior stucco?
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Stucco Painting Cost Guide
Updated: August 18, 2022
Painting your home’s exterior is a great way to enhance your curb appeal, improve your property’s value, and give your space a revitalizing and fresh look. If you have a stucco exterior, there are a few things you should consider before you begin. For starters, painting stucco takes a practiced hand, which is why it’s always wise to have professional painters on your side. A handful of things impact your painting project's cost, including the size of your home, the current state of the stucco, the type of paint you choose, and more.
On average, the cost to paint a stucco home costs between $3,000 and $5,000. The average homeowner pays $4,000 to paint an average two-story 2,000 sq.ft. home with a masonry paint and a flat or satin finish. However, prices can get as low as $2,250 to paint a single story 1,500 sq.ft. home with an acrylic paint and a flat sheen and can go as high as $10,000 to paint a three-story 2,500 sq.ft. home with an elastomeric paint and a satin finish.
Cost to Paint Stucco Exterior
|Average Cost to Paint Stucco House|
|National average cost||$4,000|
Stucco Paint Cost per Square Foot
When it comes to planning an exterior paint job, the size of your home is a crucial factor in the price of your project. When calculating the square footage of your home, it is important to remember that the amount of siding you have will not always be the same as your interior square footage. The best way to measure is to calculate each exterior wall separately by multiplying the length and the height and add them all together. Afterward, you can add gables, doors, and other features to the total. The total price to paint exterior stucco, including labor and materials, ranges from $1.50 to $4. Depending on how much siding your home has, you can expect to pay between $1,200 and $10,000. Let’s take a closer look below.
|Amount of Siding||Average Cost (Labor Included)|
|800 sq.ft.||$1,200 - $3,200|
|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|
Cost to Paint Stucco House by Number of Stories
In addition to the size of your home, the number of stories it has will factor into the overall costs of your exterior stucco paint job. Additional stories often mean more square footage. It also adds complexity and potential risk as your painting contractors must maneuver taller ladders or scaffolds to reach every part of your home’s exterior. Furthermore, the higher up they have to climb, the more things that can get in the way, namely tree branches and powerlines. If your painters have to work up off the ground, you must consider how much of the space below needs to be blocked off to protect people from falling tools and other objects. After ten feet, you can expect prices to rise by $0.10 to $0.25 per foot. Depending on the number of stories your home has, you can expect to pay between $2,000 and $8,000 to paint the average 2,000 to 2,500 sq.ft. home with each number of stories.
|Number of Stories||Average Cost (Labor Included)|
|Ranch||$1,000 - $3,000|
|Single Story||$2,000 - $4,000|
|Two-Story||$3,000 - $5,000|
|Three-Story||$4,500 - $8,000|
Stucco Paint Price by Type of Paint
When painting a stucco exterior, you should use three types of paint, acrylic, masonry, and elastomeric. Under no circumstances should you ever use an oil-based paint. This is because stucco naturally draws the moisture out of the paint, leading to a “burning effect” in which the paint will look faded and uneven across the surface. Depending on which of the three recommended paint types you choose for your stucco home, you can expect to pay between $20 and $115 per gallon of paint.
|Type of Paint||Average Cost per Gallon (Materials Only)|
|Acrylic||$20 - $60|
|Masonry||$25 - $80|
|Elastomeric||$35 - $115|
Acrylic Paint for Stucco
A gallon of acrylic paint costs between $20 and $60. This is often the preferred type of paint for stucco because it is extremely durable but breathable, too. It is also the most affordable option. However, it will not last as long as masonry or elastomeric paints, which means it will have to be repainted more often. Furthermore, it will not hide imperfections on your stucco walls as well as other paint types. There are plenty of color options when it comes to using acrylic paint. In fact, they offer the most diverse choices when compared to masonry paint and elastomeric paint.
Masonry Stucco Paint
Typically, it costs between $25 and $80 for a gallon of masonry paint. This type of paint is ideal because it is specifically made for stucco surfaces. It bonds extremely well to the surface and offers superior mold and mildew resistance. Furthermore, it is priced fairly when compared to elastomeric alternatives. On the downside, many manufacturers offer limited color options. Plus, they have a lower permeability rating than acrylic paints, which means your stucco walls won’t be able to breathe as much.
A gallon of elastomeric paint costs between $35 and $115 per gallon. This type of paint is one of the best choices for a stucco exterior due to its durability, density, and flexibility. Elastomeric paints hold strong for ten years or more and are thicker than regular paints. They provide a watertight seal that protects your exterior from moisture and water damage. Elastomeric paints are bendable, so they can shift with the walls as they settle and change with the climate. On the downside, these paints are the most expensive. When using elastomeric paints, you will still have a fair share of flexibility in color choices. You’ll be able to choose more than you would with masonry paints, but not as much as acrylic alternatives.
Cost of Exterior Paint Sheen for Stucco by Type
One of the most important decisions you must make when painting your exterior stucco is choosing the correct paint sheen. As a general rule of thumb, you should always use a flat or matte paint finish for a stucco surface. Though eggshell, satin, and semi-gloss finishes do not hold up to a flat finish aesthetically, they are viable options in terms of durability. This is because these sheens are more water-resistant, which is ideal for any exterior surface.
When it comes to painting stucco, you do not want to use high-gloss paint. Glossy finishes, when paired with the porous surface of stucco, cause shadowing to occur. This is a phenomenon where the reflection of light forms dark splotches on the stucco, making it seem like the paint is inconsistent. Depending on the type of finish you choose, you can expect to pay between $15 and $70.
|Type of Finish||Average Cost per Gallon (Materials Only)|
|Flat||$15 - $40|
|Eggshell||$30 - $50|
|Satin||$30 - $50|
|Semi-Gloss||$40 - $60|
Stucco Paint Cost by Brand
Many different paint brands are available to choose from for your exterior stucco paints. Each one comes with its own unique benefits and setbacks. Each paint brand generally offers three types of exterior paints suitable for stucco, including masonry, acrylic, and elastomeric. Depending on which brand of paint you choose and what type of paint you get, you can expect to pay between $20 and $115 per gallon of paint.
|Paint Brands||Average Cost per Gallon (Materials Only)|
|Benjamin Moore||$15 - $60|
|Glidden||$20 - $60|
|Behr||$20 - $70|
|Valspar||$25 - $80|
|PPG||$35 - $90|
|Sherwin-Williams||$40 - $115|
Benjamin Moore Stucco Paint
On average, a gallon of Benjamin Moore stucco paint costs between $15 and $60. Their acrylic paints generally cost between $15 and $30, their masonry paints range from $25 to $40, and their elastomeric paints cost approximately $35 to $60. Benjamin Moore has been in business since 1883 and has been providing a variety of paints, coatings, and finishes for residential and commercial projects. Their paints are known for being moisture-resistant, durable, and customizable, making them a great choice for a wide range of applications. Benjamin Moore offers a standard satisfaction guarantee to ensure you like your exterior stucco paint.
Glidden Stucco Paint
Glidden first opened their doors in 1875 and is now a successful paint brand underneath PPG Industries. A gallon of Glidden stucco paint costs between $20 and $60. Their acrylic paints are the least expensive, with average prices ranging from $20 to $35, masonry paints costing between $25 and $45, and their elastomeric paints ranging from $35 to $60. All three of their stucco paint options are durable and water-resistant, making them a great choice for your home’s exterior. All of Glidden’s exterior paints are backed by a protective 15-year warranty.
Behr Stucco Paint
On average, Behr stucco paints cost between $20 and $70 per gallon, with acrylic paints ranging from $20 to $30, masonry paints ranging from $25 to $40, and elastomeric paints ranging from $35 to $70. Behr was founded in 1947 and is now one of the largest paint and primer manufacturers in the United States, Canada, and Mexico. Their exterior stucco paints are known for their durability, flexibility, and weather resistance. For additional protection, Behr protects their exterior stucco paints with a lifetime limited warranty that guarantees a waterproof application and a shield against existing hairline cracks in the surface of your stucco.
Valspar Stucco Paint
A gallon of Valspar stucco paint generally costs between $25 and $80. They offer a wide range of options, including acrylic, masonry, and elastomeric options. Their acrylic paints cost between $25 and $40, while their masonry paints range from $30 to $50, and their elastomeric paints range from $40 to $80. Valspar first opened its doors in 1806 and is an industry-leading provider of paint and coatings that work under the Sherwin-Williams umbrella. Their exterior stucco paints are weather-resistant, durable, flexible, and aesthetically pleasing. Valspar offers a 100% satisfaction guarantee. If you end up not liking your paint color, they will replace it for free.
PPG Stucco Paint
When using PPG stucco paints, you can expect to pay between $35 and $90 per gallon. Their acrylic paints have average prices between $35 and $50, their masonry paints cost between $40 and $70, and their elastomeric paints range from $60 to $90. PPG has been a global paint and coatings manufacturer since 1883. They offer a wide range of quality paints that match any style preference. Furthermore, their paints are durable, flexible, and long-lasting. PPG offers a limited lifetime warranty on the performance of their paint when applied correctly so that you can have additional peace of mind.
Stucco Paint Sherwin-Williams
Typically, Sherwin-Williams stucco paints cost between $40 and $115 per gallon. Their acrylic paints are the most cost effective, with average prices between $40 and $60. Their masonry paints cost between $60 and $80, and their elastomeric paints range from $80 to $115. Sherwin-Williams was founded in 1866 and has grown into a global leader of residential and commercial paints and coatings. Their paints are highly durable and flexible, but they are the most expensive option on the market. Sherwin-Williams offers a lifetime warranty on all their exterior paints so that you can feel confident in your home’s exterior.
Labor Cost to Paint Exterior Stucco House
Stucco is a rather particular material, which is why it’s a wise decision to hire a painting contractor to get the job done right. Your painters will have to thoroughly clean the surface and let it dry completely before they begin any painting. From there, they will decide whether to use a sprayer or a roller to paint the surface of your home. Stucco ranges from smooth to rough in texture. The smoother it is, the easier it is to paint. However, even smooth stucco needs to be treated with a professional hand.
Generally, painters charge for their projects in a few different ways, per sq.ft., hour, or project. Overall costs depend on where you live, how far your painters have to travel, the size of your home, and the state of your stucco. These additional costs are included in the final price. Not including the time it takes for your stucco to cure, the actual painting process for the average 2,000 sq.ft. house will generally take three to five days.
|Type of Labor Cost||Average Rate (Labor Included)|
|Per sq.ft.||$1.50 - $4|
|Per Hour||$25 - $100|
Stucco Paint Primer Cost
Since stucco will naturally try to absorb the moisture in your paints, your contractor needs to add a protective layer of acrylic primer before beginning any painting. On average, it costs between $15 and $60 per gallon for acrylic primers. Acrylic is the best choice for stucco services because it can easily adhere to even the roughest stucco surfaces. Your contractor will most likely apply two thin coats rather than one thick one to avoid paint pooling in crevices and paint drips. This takes a bit more time as they will have to wait for the primer to dry between layers.
Cost to Repaint Stucco House
Typically, it costs between $5,600 and $12,000 to repaint the average 2,000 sq.ft. stucco house. Regardless of what color you are repainting your stucco exterior, your contractors will have to strip the old paint before applying any new coatings. This requires sandblasting, which is often quite costly, ranging from $1.30 to $3.50 per sq.ft. Then, the stucco will have to be coated with a new layer of primer, and then finally, the paint coatings.
Stucco Repair and Painting Cost
Stucco is one of the top materials for home exteriors because it is durable, UV-resistant, and weather-resistant. However, it can begin to show signs of deterioration as it continues to be exposed to the elements. Over time, you may begin to see cracks, stains, mildew, chipping, water damage, and more. A single coat of paint by itself will not be enough to fix these issues. Before your contractors begin painting, they may need to complete some repairs. These will include taking care of water damage, mold, and mildew growth, filling hairline cracks, fixing large holes, and more. On average, you can expect to pay between $600 and $1,700 to repair your stucco exterior, which will have to be included in the overall cost of the paint job.
How Much Paint Do I Need for Exterior Stucco?
The amount of paint you need to paint your exterior stucco depends on the size of your home. Generally, a gallon of paint covers between 250 to 400 sq.ft. On paper, you can expect to need between 10 and 15 gallons of paint for the average 2,000 sq.ft. home. However, you must keep in mind that unpainted stucco will most likely absorb the paint more than other types, so you should probably get a bit more to make sure your surface will be fully covered. For this reason, we suggest buying about 10% more paint, so between 11 and 17 gallons.
The texture of your stucco exterior impacts how much paint you need. Rougher surfaces require more paint to cover the surface, while smoother ones need less. The paint will not go on as evenly on a rougher surface and needs to be spread on in larger amounts to fill in the divots. Additionally, painters will need to use different tools depending on the texture. Here are some common siding square footages for different homes throughout the United States and the amount of paint you will need for each.
|Amount of Siding||Gallons Needed to Cover Surface|
|800 sq.ft.||2 - 3.5|
|1,000 sq.ft.||2.5 - 4|
|1,200 sq.ft.||3 - 5|
|1,500 sq.ft.||4 - 6|
|1,800 sq.ft.||4.5 - 7|
|2,000 sq.ft.||5 - 8|
|2,500 sq.ft.||6 - 10|
How to Prepare Stucco for Painting
Before any painting can begin, your painters will have to do a handful of things to prepare your stucco exterior. First, they will have to clean the exterior thoroughly to get rid of any dirt and dust. They may be able to get away with just using a stiff brush or push broom, but stubborn dirt may need to be removed with a pressure washer, which generally costs between $450 and $800. After pressure washing, they will have to wait about a day for the surface to dry completely.
Next, they will deal with any repairs that may need to be made. This includes filling cracks with masonry caulk, patching large holes, removing loose stucco, and more. They will check for mold and mildew growth and perform any mold remediation services that are needed, which costs between $1,500 and $3,500. Finally, your home will be ready to prime and paint.
Painting Stucco Pros and Cons
Stucco is a very particular material, which means painting comes with both advantages and setbacks. On the plus side, painting your stucco exterior makes it more durable overall, which is ideal no matter what climate you live in. Using the correct paints, acrylic, elastomeric, and masonry, ensures your exterior is protected from moisture and water damage. It will fill in any cracks in the surface and keep it safe for many years to come. On an aesthetic front, painting allows you to completely customize your home’s style, which enhances your curb appeal and increases your home’s value.
With stucco, you must be sure you’re using the right type of paint. Even when using the right paint, it needs to be painted the right way, or else it won’t set correctly and will blister and peel. Therefore, you should always hire a professional to take care of the job. Furthermore, stucco needs to be repainted frequently in humid climates, which means you’ll have to deal with planning those projects more often.
How Often Does Stucco Need to Be Painted?
You should paint your exterior stucco every five to ten years, depending on environmental factors and wear and tear. It’s imperative to keep up with this maintenance to keep your home looking its best. It also prevents hairline cracks from getting any larger over time. Stucco does not hold up well in climates with high levels of moisture and precipitation. It may need to be painted more often if it is constantly exposed to water. In more arid climates, on the other hand, stucco lasts much longer, which means you can get away with waiting closer to ten years before needing to paint it again.
Waterproof Stucco Paint
Stucco is naturally a water-resistant material, but any cracks in the surface can let water in, which will cause more problems if left unchecked. One of the best ways to ensure your stucco is completely waterproof is to use a sealant on top of it. Elastomeric, acrylic, and masonry paint all work well against moisture, which means your exterior can stay in top shape through every season.
Most exterior paints are naturally water-resistant, but these three are the best choices because of the nature of stucco. This material draws water out of most types of paint, which causes it to burn and fade away. Elastomeric, acrylic, and masonry paints are all made to avoid that issue and add an extra waterproof layer.
Can You Paint Synthetic Stucco?
You can paint synthetic stucco. This material, also known as exterior insulation finish systems (EIFS), is created with layers of foam insulating board, fiberglass mesh, and a top layer of synthetic stucco. When painting synthetic stucco, it is best to use a water-based paint, which helps prevent moisture from seeping into the material and getting trapped. If it gets on the surface, it will evaporate instead. You will have to paint your synthetic stucco every five to seven years for it to stay in top shape.
What Color Should I Paint My Stucco House?
Depending on your preferred aesthetic, there are plenty of color schemes you can choose for your exterior stucco. If you’re going for a modern twist on a classic look, tans and earthy tones are the way to go. Stark whites give your home a Mediterranean and coastal feel. On the opposite end of the spectrum, you can paint your exterior all black. This requires more upkeep than lighter colors, but it definitely makes your home stand out. Another popular option is a rustic green. This gives your property a vintage look that will stand out. There are many more colors, from charming and playful to contemporary and fresh, including blues, light pinks, and grays.
Stucco Paint vs Fog Coat Stucco Cost
When updating your exterior stucco, there are a couple of different ways you can go about it. The first option is to paint it. For the average 2,000 sq.ft. home, you can expect to pay between $3,000 and $5,000. It can usually be applied with a roller or a sprayer. With stucco paint, you can choose from a wide range of colors, so you can completely customize your home’s exterior. Plus, new paint provides additional protection against dirt and pollutants, making it an ideal solution for home exteriors.
The other option is to use a stucco fog coating. The stucco color coat cost ranges from $3,500 to $6,000. This is a type of coating that can be applied to even out the color of the stucco. It is usually applied with a sprayer, although you can use a brush for smaller areas. According to Hunker, a fog coating is more like a stain than a paint because it actually sinks into the stucco itself rather than sitting on top. Since there is a maximum ratio of pigment to fog coatings, there are fewer color options from which to choose. If you are just looking to revitalize the original color of your stucco, a fog coating is the way to go.
|Exterior Painting Type||Average Cost for 2,000 Sq.Ft. (Labor Included)|
|Painting||$3,000 - $5,000|
|Fog Coating||$3,500 - $6,000|
Painting New vs Old Stucco
When it comes to painting new stucco versus old stucco, there are a few things you should keep in mind. Although the processes are fairly similar, there are a few key differences that your painter will have to consider. New stucco takes about 30 days to cure, so you can’t paint it right away. Experts recommend waiting that long for the best results. However, your painters can start painting after about a week. This allows the new stucco to gain its strength, and most shrinkage will have already occurred. However, having new stucco means it doesn’t need to be cleaned beforehand, which is a big plus. Stucco that has already been installed may need to be cleaned or even repaired, adding to your painting cost. First, your painting team will use a push broom to try to brush away the dirt. After that, your exterior may need a once over with a power washer for stubborn grime. Pressure washing costs between $50 and $150 per hour.
Enhancement and Improvement Costs
When painting exterior shutters, you can expect to pay between $40 and $70 per shutter. To keep things easy, your shutters should be painted when you paint the rest of your exterior. However, they can always be painted separately. Most of the time, your hired painting team will remove the shutters from your exterior and reattach them after they are painted and dried.
Painting exterior trim costs between $1 and $6 per linear foot. Many homes feature trim around the doors, siding runs, windows, and decorative trim on other parts of the exterior. While it seems like a minor detail compared to your exterior as a whole, the right color makes a big difference in aesthetics.
Paint Exterior Door
Typically, it costs between $150 and $350 to prime and paint an exterior door. Painting your front door is a great way to enhance your curb appeal and give your home a new look. A few different things impact the overall cost of your project, including the size and current state of your door, the type of paint you use, and how your painting contractor usually charges. Depending on your aesthetic, there are countless colors you can choose to paint your exterior doors, from light and subtle to dark and bold.
Paint Gutters and Downspouts
It costs between $1 and $4 per linear foot to paint gutters and downspouts. Your gutters are one of the most important aspects of your exterior’s style and performance. While they won’t often be the central focus on your curb appeal, it goes a long way to have them match the rest of your exterior. Your downspouts will most likely be made out of the same material as your gutters, which is why they cost the same amount per linear foot to paint. Since this feature runs down the side of your home, it is equally as important for it to look its best.
Additional Considerations and Costs
- Permits. The majority of paint jobs do not require any special permits or licensing, but you should always do your due diligence and double check. When working with a professional painter, they will determine if a permit is needed for you.
- HOA guidelines. If you are a part of a Homeowners Association, do not start any exterior paint job without checking their regulations. Typically, HOAs place restrictions on how your home can appear from the street.
- Lead paint. Although lead paint was banned in the United States, you can still find it in many older homes. If your exterior has lead paint and you’re getting ready to repaint, there are several actions you can take, and both are best left to a professional. Your painting contractor will tell you what’s the best road to take, but they may be able to remove the lead paint, which requires precision due to its toxic nature. The average cost to remove lead paint from your home costs between $8,000 to $15,000.
- Weather conditions. When painting your exterior, be sure to keep an eye on the forecast before you hire your contractor. It is best to choose a moderate day with little to no humidity to avoid any issues with the paint application process. Temperatures between 50 and 90 degrees Fahrenheit are the most ideal.
- DIY. It is possible to paint stucco yourself, but it takes more time than with a professional crew. You’ll need to make sure you have the right amount of paint for your project, and you’ll also need to make sure you have the right rollers, painter’s tape, and ladders to get the job done. If you have a very tall house, you may need to hire outside help because they will likely have commercial ladders and equipment for getting the job done. If you’re not comfortable repairing stucco, you may also want to consider outsourcing that step and then doing the painting yourself.
- Hiring professionals. Choose a contractor who is experienced in painting and repairing stucco. They should have the right tools, including power washing equipment and masonry repair materials. A good contractor will provide you with references from completed projects. They should have insurance to back up any work they do and protect their workers and your property.
- Research. While you may be tempted to hire the first crew you speak to, it’s best to get multiple quotes before deciding. The lowest quote is not always going to guarantee the best work, which is why you should also request references in addition to price quotes. Speaking to multiple contractors gives you a better idea of their services and what will work best for your home.
- Can you paint over stucco?
Yes, much like any other material, stucco can be painted, so you can alter your exterior to enhance your curb appeal and match your preferred aesthetic. Be sure your painters use a high-quality primer and paint to get the job done correctly.
- Do I need to prime stucco before painting?
Yes, before your painters begin painting, it is wise to prime the surface beforehand with an alkali-resistant primer. This stops the stucco from drawing too much moisture out of the paint and ensures better coverage and overall performance.
- Should you wet stucco before painting?
Yes, stucco is a hydrophobic material, which means it naturally repels moisture. Without hydration, the pH balance of the stucco surface will be too high when paint is applied. This leads to a “burning” effect in which the stucco will drain the moisture out of the paint and make it look dull, ultimately deteriorating it over time. Wetting the surface beforehand and allowing it to absorb the moisture helps avoid this problem.
- How long does painted stucco last?
A single paint application on stucco lasts between five and ten years, which means you can plan to repaint every decade or so. A handful of things can affect its durability, inducing climate conditions and overall wear and tear.
- What kind of paint do you use on stucco?
For best results, use 100% acrylic latex paint on stucco exteriors. It adheres to the surface best and lasts the longest. However, you can also use elastomeric paint and masonry paint. As a general rule of thumb, never use oil-based paints on stucco walls.
- How much does it cost to paint a stucco house?
For the average 2,000 sq.ft. home, you can expect to pay between $3,000 and $5,000 to paint the stucco exterior. Prices range as low as $2,250 for a smaller 1,500 sq.ft. home and can get as high as $10,000 for a larger 2,500 sq.ft. home.
- How do you paint a stucco house?
Painting a stucco house can be done with either a roller or an airless sprayer, depending on the size of the job. For best results on larger projects, your painters may use a sprayer to get the paint onto the surface and then go over everything with a roller to work the paint into the surface. No matter the size of the project, it is not recommended to use brushes.
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