How Much Does It Cost To Paint Walls With Decorative Finish?


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Paint Decorative Finish Wall Costs

Professionals & Services Cost Guides      Painters      Paint Decorative Finish Wall Costs

There are the average costs to hire a painter for indoor and outdoor work, and those fees will address what might be called standard processes that range from prepping and painting interior spaces to tackling the ladder work and time-consuming processes used to paint the outside of the house or other structure. This is often priced by the square foot and by the hour (materials and labor). Some painters also offer unique finishes and specialty treatments to walls and ceilings.

Typically, this is going to be in addition to standard paint treatment. For example, the painter will prepare and apply a basic coat or essential undercoating for the type of decorative finish, and then tackle whatever texture or look is desired.

Painting a decorative finish wall: 12’x16’

Item Cost Quantity Line Cost
Prep work: including sanding, wallpaper removal, etc. $1-$1.38 per sq.ft. 192 $192-$264.96
Priming $6.25 per sq.ft. 192 $1,200
Other materials: tape, paint brushes, rollers, trays, and related materials. $55-$205 per job 1 $55-$205
Labor (painter) $50 per hour 10-20 $500-$1,000
Labor (basic decorative finish) $2-$4 per sq.ft. 192 $384-$768
Total Cost $12.14-$17.91 per sq.ft. 192 $2,331-$3,437.96


Other considerations and costs

  • There are some decorative finishes that take a great deal more time and effort and will greatly increase the costs. For example, a basic marble finish or faux detail is far less expensive than textured plaster or stencil work.
  • Finishing the walls with glazing treatments is going to increase the cost of any project by at least $4 per square foot.
  • If a home or room has a great deal of complex molding that requires hand-painted brushwork or if there are a lot of areas to tape and protect, it is going to extend the amount of time spent on labor and increase the overall price.
  • Don’t neglect the additional fees assigned to such tasks as emptying a room of furniture to facilitate ladders or scaffolding, which can be at least $100 or more.
  • It is often possible to get a discount on the price to paint a decorative finish wall if that same finish is applied to an entire floor or series of rooms, with some professionals extending such substantial percentage discounts as 10% or more.

DIY considerations

  • It is possible to learn how to do unique finishes to walls and ceilings, but the volume of the work may require days and days of effort and the outcome may not be even close to the quality a professional delivers.
  • You can, however, do DIY furniture moving and some prep work like wallpaper removal, cleaning and other tasks that will lower the price of the work.


  • Craftsman Estimator Costbook, complete series year 2019.
  • Latest prices found on Home Depot and other vendor Web sites.
  • Literature review of DIY Web sites.
How much does it cost to paint walls with decorative finish in your city?
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Cost by city

  • New York, NY$4,610
  • Bronx, NY$3,788
  • Brooklyn, NY$3,157
  • Philadelphia, PA$3,939
  • Washington, DC$3,418
  • Atlanta, GA$3,093
  • Miami, FL$2,813
  • Fort Lauderdale, FL$2,946
  • Minneapolis, MN$3,456
  • Chicago, IL$4,027
  • Houston, TX$4,154
  • San Antonio, TX$2,788
  • Austin, TX$3,157
  • Denver, CO$2,667
  • Phoenix, AZ$2,814
  • Las Vegas, NV$3,089
  • Los Angeles, CA$3,480
  • San Diego, CA$3,158
  • San Jose, CA$3,815
  • Seattle, WA$2,793

Local costs have been calculated by accounting for labor and material cost differences across different cities. To get accurate cost estimates, indicate yours: