Posted in: Homeowner tips

How long does it take to paint a room? 4 key factors

Homeowner painting a wall

Key insights:

  • Painting a room is one of the most cost-effective ways to add value to your home, or simply to change the mood.
  • It’s important to consider all the factors that will affect the length of the project, and plan accordingly.
  • While you may wish to be efficient in your painting, make sure to take your time to do as thorough a job as possible.

How long does it take to paint a room? 4 key factors

Bland, boring walls can be such an eyesore, but how long does it take to paint a room?. We’re here to walk you through how to minimize the disruption of what can feel like a major project, and add life to your walls in the most painless way possible.

The result will be a room that adds exactly the vibe you’re looking for in your home, be it vibrancy and color or more of a cool, peaceful feeling. And whether you’re selling soon or plan to stay put for the long haul, the value you add by increasing the appeal of your home is sure to pay off.

Factors in how long it takes to paint a room

One of the first things to understand about painting any room in your house is that you’re going to have to look at the work you’ve done every day for a long time to come, so fully commit to the project! It’s important to do the absolute best, most thorough and careful work you possibly can. This won’t be a one-layer-and-done-situation.

If you’re trying to figure out just how long the job is going to take, consider these factors:

  • The size of the room
  • The number of areas being painted
  • Preparation and clean-up
  • How much experience you have painting walls

Size of room

Different room sizes will demand different amounts of your time, but also different amounts of supplies like paint, tape, drop cloths and rollers. Larger rooms are likely to have more tight surfaces, where you may have to have specialized equipment or apply more tape, and of course the act of painting the walls themselves will vary depending on the size of the room. Smaller rooms such as bathrooms can be painted much more quickly.

How long does it take to paint a bedroom?

The typical 12-foot-by-12-foot bedroom, if the ceilings are at 8 feet, will have about 384 total square feet of wall area in need of paint. Most experts estimate somewhere between four to six hours as the average time to paint a room of this size, when you account for the amount of preparation, the painting itself, and the cleanup. And don’t forget to buy the right amount of paint! For this many square feet, for instance, two gallons would be necessary.

How long does it take to paint a living room?

Living rooms tend to be larger than bedrooms and will typically take longer to paint. A 12-by-18 living room would also have significantly more wall surface to paint and may require more paint than your bedroom, and many living rooms are even larger than that. So how much time should you set aside for the work? Most experts say anywhere from five to 10 hours.

Number of areas being painted

Of course, it’s important to plan for how many rooms you will paint. Are you just painting one part of your home, or is this a larger project? The more rooms you’re looking at, the more time you should set aside. The same can be said for the number of helpers you’ll have, and don’t forget that paint will need to dry for a four to six hours between coats!

Prep and clean-up

No work is without its preparation and clean-up time. Just like you wouldn’t walk into the room with a brush and start painting, you wouldn’t leave everything on the walls and resume life as normal! Give yourself time to properly tape off corners, trim and windows with painter’s tape, and thoroughly lay your drop cloths to avoid dripping paint on your floor. The more obstructions and obstacles on your walls, the longer you should plan to take. And give yourself anywhere from 15 to 45 minutes to get everything picked up and put away once your paint is dry.

Experience in painting

Being a well-practiced home painter will make the entire process go much faster. Whether it’s because you know more about the techniques you’ll use to paint, are an expert at room preparation or will need fewer breaks to review your favorite how-to articles, the more experience you have, the faster your job will be finished. Hired professionals may even be able to save several hours off a typical painting project, and should be considered if you have walls in especially poor condition.

Can you paint a room in one day?

It’s absolutely possible! Many rooms are small enough that the process from set-up to clean-up could take your typical work day or less, but that should never be your priority. Remember: These walls are going to surround you (or the next owner of the house) for a long time to come, so you’ll want to make sure you do a thorough job you can be proud of. And if you can’t tear everything down and be finished after one day, don’t worry! Doing good work is certainly worth the extra time and effort.

5 reasons to paint a room

As you can tell, the decision to paint a room brings on quite a bit of work and can disrupt your normal routine for a day or two. So it’s important to be sure you really want the change before you get started. It’s also important to consider whether other decorating choices might be preferable. Some great reasons to bring a new color to your home’s walls might include:

  • To change the mood
    • Whether you want to make a room more relaxing by painting your walls a cooler color, or add a vibrant twist, paint is one of the fastest ways to make your home feel different.
  • Protect your home from damage
    • The materials in your walls soak up moisture over time. However, many paints are designed to seal off moisture and help prevent wear and tear for longer.
  • Cover up past mistakes
    • Maybe your toddler took a Sharpie to the wall. Maybe your last color didn’t turn out as expected. Either way, a new coat of paint can cover up mistakes and start you with a clean slate!
  • Improve the air quality
    • The science behind paint is only getting better. Newer blends come with fewer volatile organic compounds (VOCs). New paint can also help reduce dust in the air.

Get the most out of selling your newly painted home with Edina Realty

You have to look at your walls every day you’re in your home, shouldn’t you like what you see? With the right amount of careful planning and hard work, we’re confident you can make your walls into your greatest masterpiece. And if you’re planning to sell, we can help you with everything from painting to choosing which renovation projects to tackle.

If you’re ready to move forward in another way, to a new, freshly-painted home somewhere else, get in touch! Our customer care team would be happy to set you up with an Edina Realty agent who can help you make the most of your sales process, whether you’re looking for the perfect listing price strategy or advice about how to renovate your home before you sell.

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