Do You Know: How Much Do Painters Make? (Learn It Now!)

Painters work in a variety of fields; they may be construction painters who typically work with erection projects, or they can own their business and have some employees to help them with their duties.

A painter from any field must be proficient in these following tasks:

  • Painting properties involving interior and exterior areas.
  • Perform tasks including varnishing and other surfaces covering
  • Carry out post-project tasks such as cleaning up areas, painting supplies and equipment
  • Prepare pre-painting such as scraping, patching, and sanding.

So how much a painter could be paid with all those assignments, it’s all shown fully in the next part.

How Much does a Painter Make?

What Made up a Painter’s Average Hourly Wage

The median wage for a Painter is $16.50 per hour, while the lowest is $11.44 and the highest is $25.61 per hour.

The total payment might depend on many portions which are calculated for each painter. These are an hourly rate, hourly tips, overtime, etc.

The table below will show you how these portions contribute to the average annual salary of a painter.

Hourly rate $11.44 – $25.51
Hour tips $0.00 – $5.84
Overtime $15.58 – $37.11
Bonus $101 – $4,885
Commission $1,024
Profit sharing $10.30 – $25,209
Total pay $24,080 – $58,979

Hourly rate is the rate that all painters could receive when they make their effort on the painting of buildings, while hour tips virtually depend on the contractors or employers. That is to say that not all painters could have tips for their work.

Over time, bonus, commission or profit sharing are only paid for painters who work for companies, erection projects or the construction industry so of course, we don’t use that way to measure income for other painters who are self-employed.

There is a wider range of hourly rate for self-employed painters. The median pay for them is $19.83 per hour, though the highest is $29,90 and the lowest is $10,67 per hour.

These are the three main factors used for measuring their income.

Hourly rate $10.67 – $29.90
Hourly tips $1.43
Overtime $23.30
Total pay $22,567 – $61,944

Not only based on the employers, but wage ranges can also vary widely depending on many critical factors including education, certification, additional skills and the number of years they have spent with their occupation.

Experience Affects a Painter’s Salary

We all know, the more years of experience, the higher the salary paid. This fact should not be argued.

There are four levels of experience of a painter with the Average base salary and the Average Total Compensation which each level could be paid. The Total Compensation includes bonus, health, and retirement.

Average base salary Average Total Compensation
Entry Level (Less than 5 years) $36,844 $37,230
Mid-career (5 to 10 years) $42,149 $42,321
Experienced (10 to 20 years) $45,505 $45,719
Late-career (More than 20 years) $53,011 $53,103

As you can see, an Entry-level painter can expect to earn an Average Total Compensation of $37,230 while another with Mid-career experience might get $42,321 a year.

Being more efficient in the profession, an Experienced Painter can expect to earn $45,719, and the number for a Late-career is $53,103 per year.

The chart below will show you a positive trend of the payment by Experience.

Education Affects a Painter’s Salary

Education affects a painter salaryQualifications show how a painter was trained before they were accepted into any erection projects. Similar to the years of experience, a degree is also one of the factors determining the income of a painter.

For painting occupations, there are following levels of education: No Degree, HS/ Certificate, Associate’s, Bachelor’s, Master’s, and Doctorate.

For an Entry-level painter with an HS/ Certificate, $39,808 is their annual salary while if this person has an Associate’s degree, the salary will be up to $42,024 a year.

Follow other charts below to see the change in wages along with the variety of qualifications.

With a Mid-career painter, they might have a Bachelor’s degree so the highest income they could receive maybe $54,801 per year. However, they will get $49,347 per year with an HS/ Certificate and $51,102 per year with an Associate’s degree, $10,000 higher compared to entry-level painters.

For an Experienced painter who has an HS/ Certificate, the minimum income they could get is $50,822 a year, and the maximum wage might reach up to $60,455 a year if he has a Master’s degree.

A Late-career considered an expert with specialized professional skills, with a Doctorate could get an annual wage of $62,822. Also, Master’s and Bachelor’s degrees might bring them great money annually, $61,232 and $59,176 respectively.

In addition to the main factors, a painter can be paid more based on the skills that they acquired. The rate will depend on the projects or contractors. I will show you here some general measurements of the painter’s incomes based on their skills.

Skills Affect a Painter’s Salary

With these skills like Spraying, Maintenance, and Drywall, the payment for a painter will vary slightly. Have a look at the table below for further reference.

The lowest The median The highest
Painter with spraying skills (hourly pay) $12.68 $15.26 $24.47
Painter with Drywall skills (hourly pay) $12.49 $15.30 $28.78
Painter with Maintenance kills (hourly pay) $11.60 $16.70 $24.97

A painter with spraying skills getting bonus and overtime pay during the whole year would have a chance to earn from $26,010 to $56,653 annually.

However, if you only have drywall skills, you would not get any bonus pay so your Annual Average Wage might fluctuate between $22,647 and $58,631.

Besides, the painters with maintenance skills could take a lot of advantages with hourly tips, overtime, bonus, commission and profit sharing pay that leads to the fact that the Total Payment might vary from $24,285 to $55,916 per year.

The last contributor to a painter’s income is their working location. And next, I will show you the difference in some big cities in the U.S.

Location Affects a Painter’s Salary

Location affects a painter salaryDiversified living standards, as well as the demands of different regions, also influence the wages of painters. Here are some statistics in percentage which express the gaps between some certain areas and the national average income.

A painter will find a cushy salary in Minneapolis or enjoy an exceptional pay rate in Boston, about 42% above the national average. Also, New York (+33 percent) or Chicago (+24 percent) are the high-paying markets.

In contrast, Colorado Springs and Phoenix are regions that pay slightly less than the average.

Likewise, various types of painters will also receive dissimilar remunerations.

There are two common types of painters which are house painters and union painters. We now will have an insight into their income level.

How Much does a House Painter Make?

Interior or house painters that are employed by the construction companies have the primary responsibility for painting new houses, flats, and apartments. They also work with tenants or homeowners to complete remodeling tasks.

How much does a house painter makeA house painter has to do these following stages before painting: removing wall stains, repairing holes in the drywall, using sanders to smooth surfaces and wiring brushes then choosing and mixing paints.

Hourly Wages and Qualifications

The Department of Labor reports that the median annual income for an interior painter is $37,960. It’s equivalent to $18.35 per hour based on the 40-hour worksheet.

Most painters need high school diplomas. Many of them have completed three or four-year apprenticeship programs under the supervisor of expert painters. Some additional skills required for a house painter are decision-making, customer service, and supply management. They also have to be conscientious and able to work independently.

Regional Wages

There is a substantial variation of average wages for interiors painters depending on where you work in the United States.

The highest salary rate is $68,950 per year in Dutchess County-Putnam County in New York. Painters in the Kahului-Wailiku-Lahaina area of Hawaii also have the second-most at $63,080 per year. Painters in Fairbanks are among the highest earners at $59,810 per year.

Alaska is one of the regions where painters could be well-paid with an annual salary of $57,460. Columbia and Missouri round out the list of top five highest-paying states for painters with nearly $54,900 a year.

Contributing Factors

Location and years of experience will always influence the wages of painters.

As I mentioned in Regional Wages, painters in the different areas in the United States will receive different salaries. Painters in the high-paying states can earn between $43,030 and $57,460, while others in the low-paying ones might make only between $23,220 and $35,510.

Also, a contractor will consider the painters’ experience and determine how much money they could receive. Of course, a painter who is self-employed will earn more than who works for a contractor.

How Much does a Union Painter Make?

Union painters are the most qualified for industrial painting. They have to accomplish three or four-year training to get full-time jobs.

If they work for residential construction sites, they must be efficient in some tasks such as covering floor and furniture, removing door knobs, electric outlet, and other fixtures and applying primers and paints.

Nevertheless, they might also paint buildings, machinery, and bridges if they work for industrial, commercial or government employers.

Income and Qualifications

Income and QualificationsUnion painters’ wages are usually paid based on working hours, and they can make some extra money by working overtime.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average annual pay for union painters was $41,840 in 2017. If we count by hourly rate, this equates to $20,12 based on the 40-hour worksheet.

A union painter must be required high school diplomas or GED. Plus, they need also finish three or four-year apprenticeships under the instruction of professional union painters. During the program, they must complete 144-hour technical training and two 000-hour on-job training.

Other proficient obliged skills are physical stamina, attention to detail, customer service, and color recognition.

Income by Region

The average salaries for union painters vary in almost the U.S regions.

In the Midwest, they can earn on average $49,910 a year in Illinois, even though others who work in South Dakota earn only $33,620 a year.

Those in the West might earn on average $54,090 annually in Hawaii and $47,710 in California.

Union painters could be paid $39,090 in Vermont, but they might get $51,130 in New York, which are respectively the lowest and highest incomes in the Northeast.

In the South, they may make the most in Washington D.C, whereas the least in North Carolina, respectively $52,920 and $33,060 per year.

Contributing Factors

Contributing FactorsSome industries might be the factors that affect a union painters’ wages.

For example, painters would get the most significant incomes in electric power generation, transmission, and distribution industry, which is $71,880 in May 2017, according to BLS.

Similarly, those in the motion, as well as picture and video industries, could earn just a bit lower, at $71,420 per year.

The advantage of being a union painter is that you can work for a company as soon as you accomplish your training. Otherwise, employed by painting contractors, you would also get a high wage.

Job Outlook

Job OutlookJobs for painters are expected to increase by 6 percent through 2026 compared to the 7-percent national growth rate for all professionals according to the U.S Bureau of Labor Statistics. Most occupations will be spurred by the soared increase in new construction activities.

For the majority of in-house painters, the investors who sell or lease properties will hire them the most. However, the growth is slowed by homeowners who need to paint their houses.

Union painter positions might be rising due to an expanded demand in the industrial painting, for example, the painting factory equipment or steel tanks.

I hope that this article will bring you useful information and become one of the guides for your career.