Wall Mural Painting Cost

How much does it cost to paint a wall mural?

A wall mural is a decorative painting on a wall. It’s a fun way to add personality and fun to your home. This cost guide looks at a painted wall mural in a home. The largest factor in wall mural costs is the quality and cost of an artist. This cost guide will look at the costs for 200 sq.ft. of a mural.

Cost breakdown

  • Labor and Material Costs: professional artists typically charge between $35-$50 per hour to paint murals on site. Labor and material costs are typically wrapped into total costs and put forward as a cost per square foot for the mural itself. An average artist takes 4 hours per 20 sq.ft. of low intricacy mural.
    • $10 per sq.ft. (low intricacy)
    • $15 per sq.ft. (medium intricacy)
    • $20 per sq.ft. (high intricacy)
  • Sketching fee: most artists charge a sketching fee to formulate an artistic vision and sketch of your desired mural. Expected cost: $600-$1,500 flat rate.
  • Variations:
    • Size: most artists request a minimum of 100-160 sq.ft. mural to get started. The larger the size of the mural, the greater discount your artist will provide in your cost per sq.ft.
      • A small 160 sq.ft. low intricacy mural will take around 32 hours and will cost $1,120-$1,600.
      • A 200 sq.ft. low intricacy mural will take 40 hours and will cost $1,400-$2,000.
      • A 400 sq.ft. low intricacy mural will take 80 hours and will cost $2,800-$4,000.
    • Intricacy: adding colors, design elements, and features to a design increases the design’s intricacy. Each artist has their own threshold for intricacy but you can expect to see price increases as follows:
      • Mid range intricacy: it doubles or triples the price.
        • 160 sq.ft. mid range intricacy mural will take around 64-96 hours and will cost $2,240-$4,800.
        • A 200 sq.ft. mid range intricacy mural will take 80-120 hours and will cost $2,800-$6,400.
        • A 400 sq.ft. mid range intricacy mural will take 80 hours and will cost $2,800-$4,000.
      • High intricacy: it typically increases the price five-fold. Work hours are normally split between artists. Even very intricate designs should take less than 1-2 weeks to paint.
        • A small 160 sq.ft. high intricacy mural will take around 160 hours and will cost $5,600-$8,000.
        • A 200 sq.ft. high intricacy mural will take 200 hours and will cost $7,000-$10,000.
        • A 400 sq. ft. high intricacy mural will take 400 hours and will cost $14,000 - $20,000.

Enhancement and improvement costs

  • Add a stylish trompe l'oeil painting, which is a style of painting in which things are painted in a way that makes them look like real objects. This would be billed as a high intricacy mural and will cost 5 times more than a basic mural.
  • Apply a sealant or protective coating to preserve the mural as long as possible. This is often wrapped into an artist’s charge, however, adding this feature should be less than $100.

Additional considerations and costs

  • Work done that requires a ladder including ceiling work, will increase the cost. Expect at least an extra $2-$4 per sq.ft.
  • Any base work that needs to be done will be charged separately, including the base color paint, hole filling, spackle 1 or furniture moving. This is often a line item, and can be avoided by preparing the area for the artist before hand. This is typically charged between $100-$200 or more depending on how much work is needed to prepare for the work.
  • A mural can be added to any prepared wall surface although work done outside may take longer and cost more due to weather concerns.
  • A mural creates a highly personalised home, but rarely increases the value of the home.
  • No permits are required.
  • Consulting an interior designer is a helpful way to ensure the look is exactly what you want. Interior designers typically charge $50-$200/hr.
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Remodeling Terms Cheat Sheet

Definitions in laymen's terms, cost considerations, pictures and things you need to know.
See full cheat sheet.
1 Spackle: A paste, composed of gypsum plaster, glue, and water, used to repair holes and cracks in plaster before painting or wallpapering

Cost to paint a wall mural varies greatly by region (and even by zip code). To get free estimates from local contractors, please indicate yours.

Labor cost by city and zip code

Compared to national average
Albuquerque, NM
-14%
Allen Park, MI
+16%
Athens, GA
-9%
Atlanta, GA
+24%
Augusta, GA
-13%
Austin, TX
+13%
Bakersfield, CA
-6%
Baltimore, MD
+12%
Brooklyn, NY
+16%
Charlotte, NC
+6%
Chicago, IL
+40%
Chula Vista, CA
+8%
Cincinnati, OH
+6%
Cleveland, OH
+7%
Columbus, OH
+5%
Dallas, TX
+10%
Dayton, OH
-7%
Denver, CO
+1%
Folsom, CA
+6%
Fort Worth, TX
+6%
Fresno, CA
-6%
Gadsden, AL
-23%
Glendale, AZ
-2%
Grand Rapids, MI
+7%
Greenwich, CT
+59%
Halethorpe, MD
+9%
Hallandale, FL
0%
Hoopeston, IL
-25%
Houston, TX
+24%
Indianapolis, IN
+6%
Jacksonville, FL
-1%
Jamestown, ND
-29%
Jersey City, NJ
+23%
Key West, FL
-24%
Kingman, AZ
-35%
Kissimmee, FL
-20%
Las Vegas, NV
+7%
Liberal, KS
-44%
Los Angeles, CA
+11%
Louisville, KY
-7%
Miami, FL
+1%
Nashua, NH
+33%
Nashville, TN
+21%
New Orleans, LA
+35%
New York, NY
+77%
Oakland, CA
+36%
Omaha, NE
-10%
Orlando, FL
+2%
Oxnard, CA
-1%
Philadelphia, PA
+40%

Labor cost in your zip code

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Methodology and sources