How Long Does It Take To Paint A Room?

How long does it take to paint a room

One of the questions I am asked most by customers is: How long will it take to paint my room?

I completely understand why this is a question at the top of their minds. Whether they’re eager to settle into their new home, need to coordinate with other tradesmen, or simply want to work out whether our costs are worth it, it’s a common question that pops up in my emails.

That’s why I put this helpful guide together to discuss the factors that affect how long it takes to paint a room, the timeframe for each step involved, and how much you can expect to pay for a professional decorator to paint your room.

How Long Does It Take to Paint a Room?

So how long does it actually take to paint a room? Well, as with most things in life, it depends. It depends on several factors, including room size, condition, complexity, and the painter’s skill. We will look at each of these in more detail shortly.

However, your average professional painter can paint an average-sized room (10’x12′) in about 4-6 hours with a single coat of paint.

Factors That Affect How Long It Takes to Paint a Room

As I mentioned earlier, there are several factors that affect the time it takes to paint a room. These include:

  • Room size and complexity: The size and layout of your room will make a big difference in the time it takes to paint. Larger rooms will naturally take longer. Meanwhile, tricky-to-paint features, such as alcoves or vaulted ceilings, may require extra attention.
  • Wall condition: The condition of your walls directly affects the amount of prep work required before painting. For example, if your walls are in poor condition, you may have to spend extra time repairing cracks, sanding surfaces, and applying primers to get a smooth finish.
  • Paint colour and type: The colour of paint you choose will impact the time it takes to paint. For example, darker shades often require more coats for even coverage. Also, some paint, such as those with textured or metallic finishes, may need extra time to achieve the desired effect. 
  • Skill and experience: The painter’s expertise is an important factor. Experienced professionals can work quicker, resulting in faster completion times, while if you are a DIYer, you can expect it to take longer to paint your room.
  • What’s in the room: An empty room will be quicker to paint than a room with lots of furniture. That’s because you’ll have to move the items into the centre of the room and cover it with plastic sheeting, which is very time consuming. Also, you’ll spend more time putting the furniture back when the paint has dried.

Average Time to Paint a 12x12 Room:

To provide you with a concrete example, I will break down the average time required for each stage of painting a 12X12 room:

  1. Prep Work: Begin by clearing all the furniture and protecting all the surfaces in the room. Next, complete any necessary repairs, for example, filling any cracks or holes in the walls. On average, expect to spend around 2-3 hours preparing a room of this size.


  2. Painting Walls and Ceilings: Painting the walls and ceilings is the main task. For a 12×12 room, it typically takes approximately 4-6 hours to paint these surfaces, taking into account wall texture, number of coats, and paint drying time. First, paint the ceiling and then move onto the walls – this is the best order to paint a room.


  3. Painting Woodwork: If the room includes woodwork like doors, trims, and baseboards, allow for an extra 2-3 hours for painting these elements. Prepping the woodwork, applying paint, and allowing sufficient drying time are all necessary for a professional-looking finish.


  4. Clean Up: After the painting is complete, you need to clean up the room. Removing protective coverings, tidying up tools, and ensuring the room is clean and tidy usually takes 1-2 hours.

Average Cost for a Painter and Decorator To Paint a Room

Now that we have looked at how long it takes to paint a room, let’s see how much a professional painter and decorator will charge to paint your room.

On average, you can expect to pay around £30 to £60 per hour or £200 to £400 per day for professional painting services. Therefore, the cost to paint an average-sized room will vary between £400 – £800.

However, you can expect the cost to vary based on several factors, including location, complexity, and the experience of your decorator.


So, there you have it! When it comes to the question, “How long does it take to paint a room?” the answer is not a one-size-fits-all. It depends on several factors, including room size, complexity, wall condition, paint colour, and the painter’s skill. And now you know how much time you’ll need to set aside for this task, you can paint your room with total confidence.

However, it’s important to remember that these timeframes and costs are estimates, and the actual time and cost may vary. And, if you decide to hire a professional interior painter and decorator, it’s always a good idea to discuss specific details with them to obtain an accurate timeframe.