How to Estimate a Commercial Painting Job

Eddie Shekari
January 20, 2023

Commercial buildings undergo renovations and refreshing paint jobs to present a clean corporate image—a welcoming business identity. However, these large types of projects can be challenging to take on. Executing a successful commercial painting job for your business’s space requires detailed planning, especially if your project calls for a large team and various materials. You may even wonder how to estimate a commercial painting job, an essential part of putting your plan together.

In this blog, we’ll look at the various factors that go into your commercial painting job and what you can expect as you plan for your business renovation. 

What is a Commercial Painting Job?

Commercial painting jobs refer to painting commercial establishments and businesses, like restaurants, factories, and large residential complexes. This project is usually considered large-scaled and focused on the functional aspect of the paint job. Commercial paint jobs aren’t aesthetic projects but they can be helpful in visually attracting clients and customers.

Factors to Consider

Amount of Paint

The surface area of what you plan to paint is a vital part to estimating the amount of paint needed and the paint costs. A larger and tall building—anything beyond 15 feet—will need scaffolding,increasing the time needed to complete the paint job and the overhead. To calculate the size of the area that will be painted, you must multiply the height and width of each wall to determine the total square footage.

Height x Width = Wall A

Wall A + Wall B + Wall C +Wall D = Total Square Feet 

Surface Material

The type of painting project makes a great impact on how much paint is needed and the equipment required. Commercial properties will have a diverse set of surfaces that professional painters will put into consideration in their painter charge, such as metal, stucco, and brick exteriors. Depending on the surface material that will be painted, your price estimate may vary per square footage. 

calculating cost

Calculating the Cost

Material Cost

It’s important to keep in mind that each gallon of paint can cover about 300 square feet on textured surfaces, and on smooth surfaces, a gallon can accomplish around 400 feet. The high-quality exterior paint costs range between $50 to $75 per gallon. Beyond the gallons of paint, you may need to consider costs of the primer, brushes, roller paint trays, and drop cloths for this paint job. The materials your professional painters may need can be placed in a detailed, itemized list for your reference. 

Labor Cost

Knowing how many hours a worker may need to complete the job is essential to calculating labor costs. Because commercial painting jobs are generally large-scale, the labor cost will include a large team of painters with the experience and skill level needed to complete the task. Hiring a crew that can execute a neat and precise job in a timely manner can make a significant difference on your commercial building in comparison to the result of a DIY job. 

Wall preparation tasks—washing, scraping, caulking, applying primer—should be in consideration as you think about how many hours the paint job will take. These additional tasks will require time to ensure your commercial space is refined and well-painted. In most paint jobs, several coats of paint would be needed to fully coat the surface area. Professional painters can usually complete about 150 to 200 square feet an hour with a standard hourly rate of $50 to $100. 

Your rough estimate of the labor cost is calculated by multiplying the hourly rate by the total square footage of the surface that will be painted. Depending on the paint job, whether it’s an interior or exterior painting, the labor cost will include the prep, detail, and cleanup work, increasing more of the time needed to complete your job. It is recommended to determine the highest and lowest rate to understand the labor costs best. 

The Total Costs

Your final step would be adding the material and labor costs together to estimate your commercial paint job. For a general rule of thumb, professional painters set their painter charge based on the square footage. Factors, such as intricate trim details, prep work, safety tasks, and outdoor obstructions, can impact the paint job itself and the cost. 

commercial painting professional

Commercial Painting by the Pros

There are many factors that go into estimating your commercial painting job, and it can become a difficult task to complete if you don’t account for the size, substrate, and team equipped with the experience you need. However, you can always trust your friendly neighbors to help you so you know how to estimate a commercial painting job. Pro Painters provides a free estimate and a team of experts for your commercial painting needs.

Pro Painters has strived to provide high-quality residential and commercial painting services for the last 27 years in the Greater Houston area, offering a variety of skilled techniques and reliable experience for your commercial space. We’re proud of our team’s quality workmanship and eager to bring your business to the next level. Visit our website or call the Pros at (832) 838-4984 today.

Free Estimate

Eddie Shekari

Eddie founded Pro Painters in 1995 to meet the growing need for high-quality residential and commercial painting needs in Houston. In nearly 20 years, Pro Painters has exponentially grown our client base, serving residents across the greater Houston area. Our core principles have helped us achieve the highest standard of workmanship and customer satisfaction. Our years of experience have allowed us to become an extension to our customers as the all-in-one solution for home makeovers.