How Much Does It Cost To Remove Popcorn Ceiling Texture?


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Popcorn Ceiling Removal Costs

Professionals & Services Cost Guides      Painters      Popcorn Ceiling Removal Costs

Popcorn ceilings were a popular choice, decades ago, to add architectural detail to an otherwise neglected space and cover imperfections by creating texture. Also known as acoustic ceilings, these are no longer popular and many homeowners are looking to remove them and return to a traditional flat ceiling. The removal of these ceilings does involve some potential health risks. It can also be very time-consuming.

Popcorn ceiling removal involves scraping the textured treatment or paint off of the ceiling, sanding, and then repainting the ceiling to finish the job. If you desire, you can also choose to add another ceiling treatment instead of just painting. Other factors that will affect the cost of this project include whether the texture has been painted over and if there is asbestos present, the latter of which could increase costs significantly.

Popcorn ceiling removal: popcorn ceilings in a 1,500 square foot home.

Item Unit Cost Quantity Line Cost
Materials and supplies: topping compound, corner beads, seam tape, etc. $50-$150 per project 1 $50-$150
Asbestos abatement: optional. $3-$7 per sq.ft. 1,500 $4,500-$10,500
Re-finishing and painting $250-$300 per project 1 $250-$300
Labor (removal) $1-$2 per sq.ft. 1,500 $1,500-$2,000
Labor (waste disposal) $75-$125 per project 1 $75-$125
Total Cost $1.25-$8.72 per sq.ft. 1,500 $1,875-$13,075


Other considerations and costs

  • If you are only doing one or two rooms in your home, the costs will be significantly lower than what is shown in this estimate. To determine your costs, calculate the square footage that needs removal and multiply it by the unit cost of each item. Some single-room jobs are as cheap as $100-$200.
  • Popcorn ceiling removal creates a lot of dust and particles in the air. Removal should be done by trained professionals with proper breathing equipment, ventilation, and cleanup methods in place.
  • If asbestos abatement is required, you may have to vacate your home until all the asbestos has been safely removed, disposed of, and the home has been properly cleaned.

Check out our guide if you need a loan for your home improvement project.

DIY considerations

  • Removing popcorn ceilings may be something that a more skilled DIY homeowner can handle, but with the amount of dust and hassle involved, it’s better to leave it to the professionals.
  • Asbestos removal is never a DIY job. There are strict guidelines in place for proper abatement procedures and if you find asbestos in your popcorn ceilings, you need to contact a qualified removal specialist right away.


  • 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 remove popcorn ceiling texture in your city?
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Cost by city

  • New York, NY$12,000
  • Bronx, NY$9,860
  • Brooklyn, NY$8,218
  • Philadelphia, PA$10,252
  • Washington, DC$8,897
  • Atlanta, GA$8,049
  • Miami, FL$7,321
  • Fort Lauderdale, FL$7,668
  • Minneapolis, MN$8,996
  • Chicago, IL$10,481
  • Houston, TX$10,811
  • San Antonio, TX$7,257
  • Austin, TX$8,217
  • Denver, CO$6,943
  • Phoenix, AZ$7,325
  • Las Vegas, NV$8,040
  • Los Angeles, CA$9,059
  • San Diego, CA$8,220
  • San Jose, CA$9,929
  • Seattle, WA$7,269

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