How Much Money Does a Painting Contractor Make?

how much money does a painting contractor make

Despite their long hours and physically demanding labor, painting contractors typically earn $15 an hour. Even established painting contractors usually walk away with well under $100,000 a year. Most painters are plagued by poor business decisions that directly affect their income.

If you are struggling to break the cycle of ineffective sales, poor marketing choices, and low earnings, there are proven strategies that can help you get back on your feet. In order to have a bank account that reflects your work ethic, you must avoid common mistakes. As a painting contractor, your income is directly related to your ability to implement the following strategies.

Put Energy into Growing Your Business

Many painters make the mistake of putting all their time into painting. However, to grow your business and expand your customer base, you must put time aside for business development. Not only is spending too much time painting a bad business decision, but it’s also a poor economic choice.

When you’re painting all day, you’ll typically only walk away with a rate of $15–20 per hour. To increase your income, you should hire an employee a couple of days a week. On the days when you have someone in the field, you can focus on acquiring more clients. Spending your time securing more jobs is worth exponentially more than a $15 hourly rate.

Keep Track of Your Marketing Efforts

It is essential for painting contractors to implement marketing strategies and track the effectiveness of their efforts. Marketing is crucial to growing your income and profits. Properly tracking your marketing efforts will help you allocate your budget to areas where you are seeing the best results. In the beginning, it is a good idea to try several different outlets for lead generation. Once you evaluate the effectiveness of different platforms, you can direct energy to the most profitable sources.

Don’t Set Your Prices Too Low

Painting is a competitive industry. To secure jobs, many painting contractors set low prices. However, homeowners usually don’t pick low bids. In fact, a bid that is much lower than the market price is usually a red flag to potential clients. While people want to pay low prices, they don’t want to hire people that will do a bad job. When you set your price too low, it can send a false signal to homeowners that your services might not be up to par.

Instead of undercutting your profits, your price should reflect the value and quality of your work. Set a price that delivers a high-quality service to the homeowner but leaves you with a sizeable profit for your hard work.

Be Strategic About Your Paint Store Trips

Many painters make the mistake of taking multiple trips to the paint store a day. This is inefficient and bad for the bottom line. Spending excessive amounts of time in hardware or paint stores takes away from time you could be spending obtaining new clients or creating marketing plans. Delegating paint store visits to your crew is a great way to focus your energy on more important tasks.

Take the Time to Hire Good Employees

You can put all the time aside to invest in your business, but if you don’t have trusted employees in the field, none of it will pay off. Many painting contractors fail to hire reliable employees, and they pay the price. In order to create a successful business, it is important to take the time to hire a good crew.

Painter’s Academy Provides Essential Resources for Painting Contractors

Many painting contractors fail to sustain a lucrative business. However, there are proven strategies painters can implement to increase their profits. At Painter’s Academy, we are dedicated to helping painting contractors achieve financial success. With more than 13 years of experience implementing effective marketing plans for small businesses, our team has the skills and experience to help you earn the income you deserve. To speak with one of our marketing professionals, call today at (423) 800-0520, or fill out our online contact form.

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The 5 Keys for Success in ANY Economy


Discover the key to unlocking the hidden income potential in your painting business.

George Hamby
4 months ago
I have been watching multiple videos over the past two or three years. As I watch these videos I get inspired to try to step my...
Jose Ortez
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Brandon has great insight and content in the painting industry. He definitely has the pulse on the industry. His insights has helped me tremendously in...
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I first met Brandon several years ago at the Sherwin Willliams Pro Show. My "take away"... I was sitting up front, second row, and he asked...
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The 5 Keys for Success in ANY Economy

Discover the key to unlocking the hidden income potential in your painting business.